April 19th, 2011
10:59 AM ET
Director Todd Phillips has landed in hot water after saying that he got Crystal the capuchin hooked on cigarettes.
“I wanted the monkey to smoke so we had to train her to," he told Total Film Magazine, according to Movieline. "Now I have PETA after me because the monkey's become addicted to cigarettes. She was just shooting Cameron Crowe's movie 'We Bought a Zoo.' And the monkey won't stop smoking."
After alarming animal lovers with his comments, Phillips made it clear that he was kidding.
"If you read the story, it doesn't even make sense. 'On the set of her new film, she won't stop smoking cigarettes.' Umm. Really? Maybe just take them away from her," Phillips told Movieline. "Or at least take her money away so she can't buy them any longer."
Phillips added that he told the story simply to switch things up after being asked the same questions by journalists.
"Obviously, the monkey in the film NEVER smoked a single cigarette. There are people on set whose sole job is to protect that monkey," he said. "Even if I wanted her to smoke it wouldn't be allowed. By the way, she also appears to do cocaine in the movie, but I guarantee you that she didn't do that either (I can't, however, comment on Ken Jeong's cocaine use in the film)."
"The Hangover Part II," starring Bradley Cooper, Zach Galifianakis, Ed Helms, and Justin Bartha, opens May 26.
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