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HBO Cancels ‘Luck’ after Third Horse Dies
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The horse-racing drama on HBO, ‘Luck,’ has been canceled by the network after a third horse died during production of the show on Tuesday. The show was only in the middle of its first season when the cancellation notice came from the network. The following statement was released by HBO regarding the death of the horses and the cancellation of the show:

“It is with heartbreak that executive producers David Milch and Michael Mann together with HBO have decided to cease all future production on the series LUCK.

  
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Safety is always of paramount concern. We maintained the highest safety standards throughout production, higher in fact than any protocols existing in horseracing anywhere with many fewer incidents than occur in racing or than befall horses normally in barns at night or pastures. While we maintained the highest safety standards possible, accidents unfortunately happen and it is impossible to guarantee they won’t in the future. Accordingly, we have reached this difficult decision.

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We are immensely proud of this series, the writing, the acting, the filmmaking, the celebration of the culture of horses, and everyone involved in its creation.



Quote from Michael Mann and David Milch: “The two of us loved this series, loved the cast, crew and writers. This has been a tremendous collaboration and one that we plan to continue in the future.””

The series was renewed for a second season in January by HBO after only a couple of episodes aired on the network and it stars Dustin Hoffman. There were only 1.1 million viewers of the show for the premiere episode and it struggled since the pilot to acquire even 500,000 viewers per episode. The majority of the criticism of the show came from behind the scenes because one horse broke its leg and needed to be euthanized during the filming of the premiere episode. Not long after that, a second horse had to be euthanized.

In an article on January 27, PETA criticized the show. The article was titled “Nothing But Bad Luck for Horses in ‘Luck.’”

“While filming the show’s pilot, a horse suffered a severe fracture after falling during a race sequence and was euthanized,” PETA stated. “Another horse was killed while filming a later episode. Two horses died for a couple of hours of television! PETA repeatedly reached out to series creator David Milch and others associated with the HBO production before shooting began, but our efforts were rebuffed.”



 

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