June 03, 2016 08:18 PM

Shark-lovers are asking Blake Lively to give back to the fish that is often misunderstood for its bite.

A Care2 petition is urging the actress, who plays a surfer in her upcoming movie The Shallows, to donate 1 percent of her salary from the film to shark conservation. So far the petition has received more than 20,000 signatures.

“With this film, Blake Lively has a major platform she can use to help educate about the devastating effects human activity has on sharks,” said Care2 petition author Valerie Faye. “Movies like Jaws may have instilled a great fear of sharks in Americans, but the reality is that shark attacks are quite rare. Blake Lively can help Americans understand the difference between entertainment and the reality facing shark populations by donating some of her salary to shark conservation.”

In the movie, premiering June 29, Lively plays Nancy, a young woman who decides to go surfing in an isolated area. She eventually finds herself stranded just yards from land, face-to-face with a shark swimming in the shallow waters.
The petition points out that humans pose a greater danger to sharks than sharks do to us, with fishing and the shark fin trade contributing to their decline worldwide. Actor Leonardo DiCaprio has been vocal on the issue, posting to Instagram in May that, “Every year, over 100 million sharks are killed as a result of human activity – often for their fins.”

It appears Lively has been studying up on the decline of the species, too. “Sharks are such majestic creatures that need to be protected,” she wrote on Instagram this week. “I’m grateful for my time with [shark expert] @mikerutzen and [shark attack survivor] @pauldegelder who have taught me so much about the importance and beauty of these sea wonders.”




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