Date: 26th August 2000
The release of GUY RITCHIE's new film, Snatch, may be in trouble after animal welfare groups launched an investigation into claims that hares had been killed during filming.
The film - about a diamond heist that goes wrong - starring BRAD PITT and VINNIE JONES is due to be released this Friday (1AUG00) but the RSPCA has asked to see it amid allegations that several hares were torn to pieces by dogs in the making of the movie.
The British Board of Film Classification raised concerns about the hare coursing scene with Ritchie's film company, Ska, but film makers deny allegations that the hares were hurt.
Even if the claims are proved Ska might be able to justify the inclusion of the scene because of a loophole in the law which means that wild hares are not classified as `animals.'
A PR spokesperson for the film company says, "There's nothing cruel about it. The dogs don't catch the rabbit. The film company takes animal welfare very seriously."