Art & Entertainment | Book Reviews | Education | Entertainment Video | Health | Lifestyle | Sport | Sport Video | Search

 


'The Hobbit' Whistleblowers Report Dozens of Animals' Deaths

For Immediate Release:
20 November 2012


'The Hobbit' Whistleblowers Report Dozens of Animals' Deaths on Set

PETA Plans Protests at Premieres Around the World

Wellington – PETA US has alerted Peter Jackson, director of The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, to a slew of animal injuries and deaths on the production's New Zealand set. In its letter, PETA US details allegations from four whistleblowers who worked as wranglers that all these incidents – including the deaths of three horses and numerous sheep, goats and chickens – could have been prevented if Jackson's lead trainer and the head of production had fulfilled their duties and heeded the warnings of several wranglers.

"Two horses were run off embankments and sustained broken necks on the set of The Hobbit, at least one horse was left lying on the ground with his legs tied together for more than three hours, numerous goats and sheep used for the production died from worm infestations and from falling into sinkholes and a dozen unprotected chickens were killed by dogs", says PETA US Senior Vice President Lisa Lange. "Peter Jackson's films have been at the forefront of the special-effects revolution, but this production's decision to use numerous live animals and allow them to suffer needlessly and die takes the entertainment industry a giant and disgraceful step backwards."

Among the whistleblower allegations outlined in PETA US' letter are the following:
• Two horses were run off embankments by other horses in their paddocks and sustained broken necks. One was euthanised, and the other was found dead with her face submerged in a river.
• The production team also allegedly ignored wranglers' concerns over the danger that the animals were in. One wrangler was allegedly fired for expressing his concerns.
• A horse named Shanghai was hobbled (his legs were tied together so that he could not move) on set during a location shoot and left lying on the ground for more than three hours, reportedly because he was too active for his rider to handle. The rope burns on all of Shanghai's legs that resulted from the hobbling were covered up with make-up and fake feathers (long hair on the legs of some horses) for filming. Hobbling is a violation of the guidelines of the American Humane Association (AHA) and an inappropriate way to deal with an energetic horse.
• A horse named Zeppelin died, likely of colic, after his diet was suddenly and drastically changed. The head animal wrangler allegedly declined a necropsy, and Zeppelin was quickly buried on site.
• The production's AHA representative, whose expertise is reportedly in companion-animal medicine rather than equine care, was allegedly inappropriately friendly with the head animal wrangler and dismissive of the concerns of other wranglers. He was not present for many of the animal sequences.

PETA US' letter to Peter Jackson is available upon request. For more information, please visit PETA.org.

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Culture Headlines | Health Headlines | Education Headlines

 

"Not A Competition... A Quest": Chapman Tripp Theatre Award Winners

Big winners on the night were Equivocation (Promising Newcomer, Best Costume, Best Director and Production of the Year), Kiss the Fish (Best Music Composition, Outstanding New NZ Play and Best Supporting Actress), and Watch (Best Set, Best Sound Design and Outstanding Performance). More>>

ALSO:

Film Awards: The Dark Horse Scores Big

An inspirational film based on real life Gisborne speed-chess coach An inspirational film based on real life Gisborne speed-chess coach Genesis Potini, made all the right moves to take out top honours along with five other awards at the Rialto Channel New Zealand Film Awards - nicknamed The Moas. More>>

ALSO:

Theatre: Ralph McCubbin Howell Wins 2014 Bruce Mason Award

The Bruce Mason Playwriting Award was presented to Ralph McCubbin Howell at the Playmarket Accolades in Wellington on 23 November 2014. More>>

ALSO:

One Good Tern: Fairy Tern Crowned NZ Seabird Of The Year

The fairy tern and the Fiji petrel traded the lead in the poll several times. But a late surge saw it come out on top with 1882 votes. The Fiji petrel won 1801 votes, and 563 people voted for the little blue penguin. More>>

Music Awards: Lorde Reigns Supreme

Following a hugely successful year locally and internationally, Lorde has done it again taking out no less than six Tuis at the 49th annual Vodafone New Zealand Music Awards. More>>

ALSO:

EPMU: Fourth Pike River Anniversary

Representatives of the Engineering, Printing and Manufacturing Union are proud to stand with the Pike River families to mark four years since 29 men lost their lives. More>>

ALSO:

'Kindara': Unusual Ginger Coloured Kiwi Chick Released To Taupo Creche

A cute little kiwi chick with an unusual ginger tinge to its feathers has just been released to Wairakei Golf & Sanctuary Kiwi Creche in Taupo after hatching at Rainbow Springs' Kiwi Encounter. More>>

Get More From Scoop

 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
Culture
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news