Officials at PETA have fired off a letter to HBO chiefs urging them to rethink the use of animals after the ape featured in two episodes of the series following the network's recent work with elephants in "Westworld", a bear in "Silicon Valley", a tiger in "Vice Principals", and a lion in "The Leftovers".
PETA bosses are calling on the company's executives to enact a policy against using wild animals.
"Animals aren't looking for their '15 minutes of fame' - in fact, they're desperate to avoid it," says PETA Senior Manager of Animals in Film and Television Lauren Thomasson. "HBO knows this much is true, and PETA is calling on the purportedly progressive network to stop exploiting animals who are typically caged and beaten into submission off set, and to use CGI instead."
PETA points out that primates, such as capuchin monkeys, who are used for film and television are "typically taken away from their mothers prematurely and are frequently denied adequate psychological and social stimulation, proper exercise, and the opportunity to engage in natural behavior".
"As a result, they often develop neurotic behavior patterns, such as pacing, rocking, swaying, cage-biting, and self-mutilation," a statement reads. "Many suffer from debilitating loneliness and depression."