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Carole Baskin on Nicolas Cage Playing Tiger King, Plus: Does She Think Joe Exotic Will Watch ‘DWTS’?

Carole Baskin on Nicolas Cage Playing Tiger King, Plus: Does She Think Joe Exotic Will Watch ‘DWTS’?

Carole Baskin is ready to hit the dance floor on “Dancing with the Stars”! “Extra’s” Jenn Lahmers caught up with Baskin, who dished on rehearsing for the show, whether she thinks Joe Exotic will be watching, and her thoughts on all the latest “Tiger King” headlines.

Baskin, the founder of Big Cat Rescue in Florida, wore her signature animal-print clothing, telling Jenn she would like it to be incorporated into her “DWTS” look. “I told them they could just go wild with the costuming,” she said.

Baskin confided that she is also hoping her stint on the show will soften her image from “Tiger King,” which led to accusations and speculation about the death of her first husband, all of which she has denied. Sharing what she wants people to see from her, she said, “For me, it’s not what people think about me from ‘Tiger King,’ even though I was grossly misportrayed as a villain, but what I am hoping people get from this is the message of what was missed in ‘Tiger King,’ that the animals are being exploited and abused — and we need to stop that.”

Her “Tiger King” nemesis Joe Exotic aka Joseph Maldonado-Passage is serving 22 years in prison on several charges, including hiring a hitman to kill Baskin. Does she think he will be watching from prison? “I sincerely doubt it,” she said. Jenn also asked about the plea for President Trump to pardon Joe. Carole commented, “I just can’t imagine that would be good for anybody’s political campaign.”

Carole also shared how she feels about Tara Reid playing her in the highly anticipated “Tiger King” movie, giving the casting her blessings. “I think it’s wonderful," she said. She isn't as enthusiastic about Nicolas Cage playing Joe Exotic, noting, “He is such a favorite actor of mine, and I just don’t know if I can even watch him after seeing that role.”

You can see Carole make her “DWTS” debut on Monday on ABC. She is enjoying rehearsals so far, she told Jenn, adding, “They have been going great. The pros are such pros!"