No Animal Torture In Hellraiser: Judgment, Director Clarifies

Later this year, Hellraiser: Judgment will have the honor of becoming the 10th instalment in Dimension’s cult horror series, but allegations of animal cruelty have threatened to cast a shadow over the Gary J. Tunnicliffe-directed flick.

Ahead of its long-anticipated release, Tunnicliffe recently appeared on the latest episode of The Movie Crypt podcast to drum up Judgment‘s arrival, not to mention all of the brutal terrors that lie in wait – hell, one actress almost passed out because a scene was so intense.

That sequence in question reportedly involves a small dog, and while Tunnicliffe explicitly stated that the animal “doesn’t get hurt” whatsoever, a vocal minority misconstrued the director’s comments, before claiming that Hellraiser: Judgment contains scenes of animal torture. That couldn’t be further from the truth, though, according to Gary J. Tunnicliffe, who tackled those allegations in a new interview with Dread Central.

Well, as usual it’s a case of two plus two equals five. First of all, no animals were harmed or injured during shooting. And secondly, there is no animal torture in the film. Neither I or the producers would do or be interested in such a thing.

Starring Heather Langenkamp, Randy Wayne, Rheagan Wallace and Paul T. Taylor as the all-new Pinhead, Hellraiser: Judgment has been shrouded in secrecy for months, though with a release date seemingly imminent, Gary J. Tunnicliffe is beginning to do more and more press to raise the film’s profile.

But first, that involves setting the record straight:

I know how sensitive Adam Green is about his dog, and as a pet owner I know that some people are as sensitive about their animals as they are about their children. This is a device used by the serial killer in Judgment to teach a lesson, and while I can’t explain too much without giving it away, I would say it’s more akin to something like the horse sequence in The Cell in terms of tone, but nowhere near as graphic, and the animal survives unscathed. And at the end of the day, it is make believe and it is a movie and it is something being perpetrated by a fictitious psychopath. The day that what happens in Hellraiser: Judgment happens in real life, I’ll be the first to apologize.

If nothing else, this is another example of the Internet jumping the gun and wrongly accusing Gary J. Tunnicliffe of animal cruelty. As the director himself said, he’d be the first to walk away from a project if it ever included scenes of cruelty, so let’s chalk this up as one big misunderstanding.

Still no word on Hellraiser: Judgment‘s due date, but keep your peepers peeled for more.