Target: Director Peter Jackson
Goal: To get Peter Jackson to promise to never use live animals in his movies again.
Animal wranglers working on the set of the new Peter Jackson film, The Hobbit, have claimed that 27 animals died during the production of the movie. Over a couple of months, three horses and numerous goats, sheep and chickens died on the New Zealand farm. The whistle-blowing wranglers stated that they had consistently complained to the production company that the land allocated to hold the animals was full of ‘death traps’. These ‘traps’ included bluffs, sinkholes and other faults. There is no history of animal abuse on other Peter Jackson films but this is an inexcusable mark against his record.
The violence and neglect felt by the 27 animals that died could have been avoided. According to People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, the American Humane Association representative for the film was often absent from film sites as well as the location where the animals were being held. The professional in charge of looking after the horses on the film was apparently not trained in equine care but rather general animal medicine. The original overseers of the horses resigned from their positions when they too became concerned with sinkholes and the general condition of the holding facility. They too voiced their concerns to the production company yet received no response.
Sign this petition to ask Peter Jackson to stop using actual animals in his films. Rather than allowing more animals to perish in order to film his movies, perhaps Mr. Jackson and his production company may find a less violent solution. Mr. Jackson has plenty of experience with computer graphics and could utilize this expertise in order to create what he needs. While it may not be as authentic looking in the long run, the cost of using actual horses, sheep, goats and chickens seems to be too high.
Dear Peter Jackson,
The recent report of the death of 27 animals during the production of your new film, The Hobbit, is quite disturbing. Equally disturbing is the information available regarding the lack of response from your production company when animal wranglers informed you of inadequate accommodations for the animals.
We ask that you stop using actual animals in your future films. Rather than allowing more animals to perish in order to film your movies, perhaps there is a less violent solution. With your history of using computer graphics in your movies, your production company should be set up to create any animals that you may need in your films. While the authenticity of the film may be damaged, I believe that is a better solution than allowing the deaths of so many innocent animals.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: foilman via Flickr