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February 23, 2007

American Humane Gives Oscar Warning

From their website:

With all the excitement surrounding the upcoming Oscar awards, it is easy to overlook the animals that play such an important role in movies. Although animals are an integral part of some of the most acclaimed films, their well-being and safety are sometimes neglected. American Humane, the authority behind the “No Animals Were Harmed”® end credit disclaimer on film and TV productions, applauds those nominated movies that included animal-safety monitoring as part of their production process — but calls attention to those that did not.

The following Oscar-nominated films, which were not monitored by American Humane, contain animal action that appears to have put animals in jeopardy and, in some cases, may have caused an animal’s death:

  • Apocalypto
  • Babel
  • Blood Diamond
  • Borat
  • Marie Antoinette
  • Notes on a Scandal
  • The Last King of Scotland
  • The Queen

Most of these movies were filmed outside the United States, in locations that included England, Japan, Mexico, Morocco, South Africa and Uganda. Current funding restrictions for American Humane necessitates that, when filming outside the United States, productions pay a fee for the monitoring services as well as other travel-related expenses for American Humane’s Certified Animal Safety Representatives. The above productions either had prior knowledge of this standard process and declined American Humane’s services, or were foreign productions that were not familiar with American Humane.

American Humane is the only organization authorized to monitor and award the “No Animals Were Harmed"® end credit disclaimer, regardless of where a production is filmed. American Humane's International Program is designed for foreign productions and for U.S. productions filmed overseas. American Humane’s Film & Television Unit works early in the process with productions to advise on the use of animals in the production and to act as a credible witness to the humane treatment of the animal actors. American Humane’s services are provided free of charge for SAG domestic productions filmed in the United States.

American Humane has contacted distributors of the above-listed films in an effort to ascertain whether or not animals were harmed and for an explanation of the filmed action that depicts cruelty to animals. To date, American Humane has not received responses.

However, American Humane would like to applaud and congratulate those nominated films that incorporated our oversight of animal action. The following productions went over and above to ensure the safety of their animal actors by making American Humane a part of the production process. For more information on these productions and others, click the link to the Film and TV Unit for an inside look at the world of animals in filmed entertainment.

  • Click
  • The Departed
  • The Devil Wears Prada
  • Half Nelson
  • Little Children
  • Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest
  • The Prestige
  • Superman Returns

About the American Humane Association
Founded in 1877, the American Humane Association is the oldest national organization dedicated to protecting both children and animals. Through a network of child and animal protection agencies and individuals, American Humane develops policies, legislation, curricula and training programs to protect children and animals from abuse, neglect and exploitation. The nonprofit membership organization, headquartered in Denver, raises awareness about The Link® between animal abuse and other forms of violence, as well as the benefits derived from the human-animal bond. American Humane’s regional office in Los Angeles is the authority behind the “No Animals Were Harmed”® End Credit Disclaimer on film and TV productions, and American Humane’s office in Washington is an advocate for child and animal protection at the federal and state levels. American Humane meets the strong, comprehensive standards of the Better Business Bureau’s Wise Giving Alliance and has been awarded the Independent Charities of America "Best In America" Seal of Approval. Visit www.americanhumane.org to learn more.

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