The US and world premiere of A Dog’s Purpose has been cancelled, after allegations of animal cruelty emerged online.
The film, which stars Dennis Quaid has been widely criticised by animal rights charities, including PETA who suggested a full boycott of the film, after footage emerged of a German Shepherd being tortured in a torrent of water. Both the director and the producer deny any knowledge of wrongdoing during the filming of the Canadian production.
In the video, a voice can be heard saying: ‘Don’t worry, it’s warm water at least. He ain’t going to calm down until he goes in the water. Just got to throw him in.’ The handler then throws Hercules (the German Shepherd) into the pool, clawing and struggling throughout.
The footage was posted online on the TMZ website. A statement from Amblin Entertainment and Universal Pictures called off the premiere event, and said they did: ‘not want anything to overshadow this film that celebrates the relationship between humans and animals.’
Director Lasse Hallstrom commented on Twitter, saying, ‘I am very disturbed by the video released today from the set of my film A Dog’s Purpose,’ before adding, ‘I have been promised that a thorough investigation into this situation is underway and that any wrongdoing will be reported and punished.’
A Dog’s Purpose was due to premiere this weekend. Check out the shocking footage below: