*Uh oh. This is definitely not a good look for Amblin Partners and Universal Pictures. The two gargantuan studios have teamed up for the highly anticipated movie, ‘A Dog’s Purpose,’ scheduled for a January 27 release, but with claims of animal abuse, the opening weekend may start off badly.
According to a report by TMZ, based on a video they received, one of five German Shepherds used as animal actors in the film is seen being forced into a pool of water. The terrified animal is said to be clawing at the edge of a pool as people off camera laugh and comment, “You just got to throw him in,” as a trainer tries to force the animal into rushing water.
TMZ reports that the scene was shot for the movie in Winnipeg, Canada, in November 2015.
The dog does eventually get in the water, but goes under almost immediately. An off camera person begins yelling “Cut it!” as crew members race toward the animal.
A part of the scene? No one off-set will ever know.
Of course the studios are now anxious. The last damn thing they need is for people to boycott their precious film, where a dog is the star…as PETA is encouraging filmgoers to do.
In a joint statement to TMZ, Amblin Partners, whose prime investor is Steven Spielberg, and Universal Studios writes…
In a statement to TMZ, Amblin Partners and Universal Pictures said, “Fostering a safe environment and ensuring the ethical treatment of our animal actors was of the utmost importance to those involved in making this film and we will look into the circumstances surrounding this video.”
PETA ‘s not buying it.
“PETA is calling on dog lovers to boycott the film in order to send the message that dogs and other animals should be treated humanely, not as movie props.”
The film is based on the book by W. Bruce Cameron, and it tells the soulful story of one dog’s journey to find the meaning of his own life through the lives of the humans he touches along the way.
See the official movie trailer directly below.