Wendy Benchley is a marine and environmental conservation advocate, and former councilwoman from New Jersey. Her husband Peter Benchley was the famed author of JAWS, the classic suspense novel of shark versus man, which was made into the blockbuster Steven Spielberg movie. The Jaws phenomenon changed popular culture and continues to inspire a growing interest in sharks and the oceans today. Today Wendy Benchley joins our producer Pat Stango to discuss the legacy of JAWS, how its story still resonates in the events of today, and why ocean conservation is something she still fights for.
Jaws is a 1974 novel by American writer Peter Benchley. It tells the story of a great white shark that preys upon a small resort town and the voyage of three men trying to kill it. The novel grew out of Benchley’s interest in shark attacks after he learned about the exploits of shark fisherman Frank Mundus in 1964.