In late November of 2013, a startling report by The Hollywood Reporter revealed multiple counts of animal neglect and abuse in the entertainment industry – in cases where The American Humane Association (AHA) was supposedly looking out for the safety of the animals. The AHA was supposed to provide us comfort with their “no animals were harmed in the making of this film” designation, but after the report, how much faith can we have left in them?
Now, a new organization, the nonprofit Movie Animals Protected (MAP), is stepping up to challenge the AHA as the “leader” of safeguarding animals used in entertainment.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, the group is “MAP claims it will surpass many of the AHA’s protocols by creating special guidelines for live events and reality shows, conducting risk assessments of scripted animal stunts, immediately issuing statements when on-set animal deaths occur and posting results of its investigations (including necropsies) online. Its jurisdiction will include animal housing and transportation, which the AHA does not monitor … MAP will not offer an ‘absolute statement’ like the AHA’s main ‘No Animals Were Harmed’ credit regarding how animals are treated. Instead, it will acknowledge its participation on a production, referring viewers to its website for further explanation.”
However, MAP is formed of many former employees of the AHA and it will still charge a fee to productions for the use of their services. It certainly seems like MAP has the right intentions, and is trying to cover more ground when it comes to the animal’s welfare on set, but how can we as the public truly receive honesty and transparency from such an organization when it’s the movies and shows that are paying their checks?
Green Monsters: Tell us what you think about this issue and what you would propose to safeguard animals used in entertainment.
Image Source: Vancouver Film School