“It’s why I cannot abide being in all-male company.
I want to talk about things that matter.” It is no doubt one reason why his plays have depth as well as being entertaining.
After 24 years and more than 10,000 performances, the musical Blood Brothers will, on November 10, finally leave the West End stage.
It contracted papilloma virus, which produced wart-like patches on his skin.
Its fortunes changed in 1993 when it starred in Free Willy, about a boy fighting the unscrupulous owner of an oceanarium to liberate its star turn.
"Keiko proved a lot of naysayers wrong and that this can work, and that is a very powerful thing."Mr Phillips hopes that even in death Keiko will continue to aid whale research.
"My preference would be to bury him on land," he said.