The Hangover movies kind of run together in a blur in my head, but I saw both of them and I remember animals figuring prominently in each. There was that capuchin monkey in Hangover II (she has her own wiki page, did you know?) and there were chickens and a tiger in the first movie. Well it turns out there’s a damn giraffe in this one, and this is a spoiler warning, but it’s in trailer so I don’t feel any guilt about revealing it – the giraffe gets beheaded by a thruway overpass. Of course PETA is all up in arms over this, even though the giraffe beheading was all computer generated. A real giraffe was brought in for some scenes, and this was enough to draw PETA’s ire, even though they’re not doing anything to fix the issue of animals on film except complaining about it – constantly and loudly. Also, it’s worth noting that PETA timed this press release to coincide with the film’s release date, which is Friday. They could have bitched about it when we first saw the trailer with the decapitated giraffe, but no.
A decapitated giraffe. A smothered rooster. Dead dogs.
These are just a few of the incidents milked for laughs by Bradley Cooper, Ed Helms, Ken Jeong and Zach Galifianakis in the upcoming Hangover 3, and a rep for PETA tells RadarOnline.com that it’s simply unacceptable.
“We regret that unlike most Hollywood directors, [Hangover 3 director] Todd Philips remains insensitive to what animals are put through to make a film, and that despite evidence given to him about the abuse and stress inherent in training wild animals such as giraffes, monkeys and tigers, he is still including them in his movies,” a rep for PETA told RadarOnline.com.
Although the scene featured in the trailer of a giraffe being decapitated alongside Zach was computer-generated, PETA claims that they have knowledge a giraffe was used in a studio.
“Phillips filmed a real giraffe in the studio to create the character,” the rep says, “an entirely unnecessary stressor for the giraffe, given what is now possible with CGI.”
“Giraffes are extremely delicate creatures who are easily upset and become nervous in surroundings that are unfamiliar and therefore frightening to them,” the rep explained.
I checked the website for the Humane Society film and TV oversight board, No Animals Were Harmed, because they actually monitor films for animal treatment instead of just complaining after the fact. They didn’t supervise the animal scenes in Hangover II at all “due to the fact that it was filmed internationally and the production did not establish a contract for our oversight.” They were on set during a single scene with the monkey that was shot in the US, but they concluded that the “scene did not appear in the theatrical release.” So I would bet something similar happened with Hangover III. They don’t have an entry for that film at all yet.
At least one reviewer on Rotten Tomatoes pointed out the sheer amount of animal cruelty in the film while roundly trashing it. The Movie Waffler writes that the film contains “a copious amount of racism, homophobia, and a disturbing, and puzzling, amount of animal cruelty.” He also points us to Bradley Cooper’s character’s line “He killed a giraffe, who gives a f*k?” Hangover III currently has a 48% rating on Rotten Tomatoes. That’s better than Hangover II, but it’s early yet. At least they don’t use the same lost weekend premise. (Or so I’ve heard.)
Oh and in case you’re wondering if there are going to be any more Hangover movies to follow, in a recent press junket Bradley Cooper, Zach Galifianakis and Ed Helms basically said “no.” Ed Helms said “it’s over… it feels like the right time to wrap it up.” Bradley concluded that “in our minds it’s over, and I think Warner brothers too.” All the promotional materials claim it’s the “finale” too, although that doesn’t mean much.
Here’s the trailer. There’s cockfighting at 1:30, and the giraffe is at 1:50.