Peter Jackson is denying allegations claiming that the animals used for his upcoming film, The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, were mistreated.
According to Entertainment Weekly, the Associated Press talked to four of the animal wranglers. They said the farm that was used wasn’t suitable for horses due to bluffs, sinkholes and broken-down fencing.
The American Humane Association oversaw the welfare of the animals for the film and said no animals were harmed. Jackson has also released a statement in response to the claims of animal mistreatment.
“The producers of The Hobbit take the welfare of all animals very seriously and have always pursued the highest standard of care for animals in their charge. Any incidents that occurred that were brought to their attention as regards to this care were immediately investigated and appropriate action taken. This includes hundreds of thousands of dollars that were spent on upgrading housing and stable facilities in early 2011,” Jackson said in his statement as reported by The Huffington Post.
The director even confirmed that over fifty-five per cent of all the shots using animals in the film were computer generated.
“We regret that some of these accusations by wranglers who were dismissed from the film over a year ago are only now being brought to our attention. We are currently investigating these new allegations and are attempting to speak with all parties involved to establish the truth,” Jackson continued.
Entertainment Weekly reports that due to these allegations PETA announced that they plan to protest the film’s premieres.
The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey is set to be released on December 14.