The chimp is out!
Producers of MASTERCHEF JUNIOR have agreed to axe a scene featuring a live chimpanzee from an upcoming episode amid concern from the animal rights group, PETA.
The organization sent a letter to celebrity chef Gordon Ramsay this week after getting wind of what we assume was intended to be an amusing gimmick on the family-friendly show.
“Someone posted a picture of the chimp with Gordon Ramsay on Facebook,” PETA spokesperson Lisa Lange tells TheTVPage.com.
“As soon as we saw it, we immediately wrote to Gordon and to Shine [the production company that makes the show].”
Lange contends that chimpanzees trained for public performance are often stolen from their mothers at a young age.
“To keep them in line, they are typically beaten by their trainers,” she says.
Within 24 hours of receiving their note, producers agreed to remove the primate from the episode.
Lange admits the whole thing was likely just an “honest mistake” on the show’s part.
“There is no way they could have known this, so we really appreciated that they took action immediately and agreed to remove the scene,” she said.
“When people do good things, you have to encourage it.”
A statement on behalf of the show’s producers acknowledges: “We did tape a segment with a properly supervised chimpanzee under the on-set supervision of the American Humane Association, but for creative reasons we do not plan to include any of that material in any of our episodes.”
MASTERCHEF JUNIOR airs Tuesdays at 8:00 PM on Fox.
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