John Cadiz Klemack
A scathing report in The Hollywood Reporter claims that animals are being harmed and in some cases killed during television and movie production. An official in charge of animal actors' safety called the report sensational. John Cadiz Klemack reports from Studio City for the NBC4 News at 5 p.m. Nov. 25, 2013.
A report Monday in The Hollywood Reporter harshly criticized the American Humane Association, claiming safety regulations for animals during film and television productions are often overlooked.
Gary Baum, the author of the article, questions whether the “No Animals Were Harmed” disclaimer credit in some movies is truthful.
"Audience members want to believe, and the AHA wants everyone to believe, so they do whatever they can to make that happen," Baum said. “Everyone wants to trust it, and right now there’s no reason to do so."
Karen Rosa, the American Humane Association's senior advisor for the film and TV unit, believes the report is sensational, including a claim that the tiger in “Life of Pi” almost drowned during production.
"But the bottom line is that animal was not harmed. Did it have a troubling moment? Yes. Was a passionate rep over-exaggerating the situation? Possibly," Rosa said. "But the bottom line is no animal was harmed."
Dr. Kwane Stewart, a veterinarian and new director of the film and TV unit, said the culture of the AHA is changing under his watch.
"My job is to come in, break it down, implement new changes," Stewart said. "The focus will always be the animals. It will always be to give animals the voice and that's what I'll continue to do."
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