Though no animals were harmed during production, the American Humane Association, which oversees animal welfare on the films, says it was the treatment of the animals while being housed and trained for the film that led to so many deaths. According to The Associated Press
director Peter Jackson's spokesperson Matt Dravitzki acknowledged the deaths of the animals, but added that some of them were from natural causes. Over 150 animals were being housed at a Wellington farm and included horses, chickens, goats and one sheep.
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