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PETA calls for boycott of ‘A Dog’s Purpose,’ Universal, Amblin cancel premiere

20 January 2017 Entertainment News

Fourth Estate Staff

Los Angeles, CA, United States (4E) – After a video showing a German Shepherd forced into turbulent waters for a scene for the movie “A Dog’s Purpose,” People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals ( PETA ) called for the boycott of the movie and now Universal Pictures and Amblin Entertainment cancelled the premiere of the flick.

The premiere of “A Dog’s Purpose” was supposed to take place this weekend in Los Angeles. PETA also called on the director of Amblin production, Lasse Hallstrom , and their producer, Gavin Polone , to pledge that they will never use animals in their films again. PETA also called on them to rescue the dogs from Birds & Animals Unlimited, which is the training and handling facility that provided the dogs for the movie.

Both Universal Pictures and Amblin Entertainment said in a statement: "Because Amblin's review into the edited video released yesterday is still ongoing, distributor Universal Pictures has decided it is in the best interest of A Dog's Purpose to cancel this weekend's premiere and press junket. Amblin and Universal do not want anything to overshadow this film that celebrates the relationship between humans and animals.”

They added that although the video was disheartening and the animal was clearly in distress, Hercules, the German Shepherd, was not harmed during the filmmaking. They added that they will continue to support the film and they are very proud of it. It will still be released nationwide next week.

“A Dog’s Purpose” stars Josh Gad, who voiced the dog named Bailey, and he said in a statement on Wednesday regarding the video that he signed for a movie that stands out as one of the most beautiful love letters to animals. He noted that he did not know details regarding the video but he found it disturbing. He added, “As a proud dog owner and a fervent supporter of organizations like PETA , I have reached out to the production team and studio to ask for an explanation.”

“A Dog’s Purpose” will be out for a wide release this January 27.

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