“Not a single animal in the production was hurt or harmed. Or in any other production I’ve worked on in the last 30 years.”
Michael Bay may be known for his on-screen explosions, but a Bay-helmeted behind-the-scenes action sequence could land the director in court.
The “Transformers” director is currently facing charges in Italy in connection with the killing of a homing pigeon during the production of Netflix’s 2018 film 6 Underground in Rome in 2018. The packaging It reported that Bay has repeatedly tried to clear his name with Italian authorities and has repeatedly denied the allegations.
“I am a well-known animal lover and a big animal activist,” Bay said in a statement to the publisher. “The animal involved in the production is not harmed or harmed. Or any other production I’ve worked on in the last 30 years.”
Bay continued: “We have clear video evidence, numerous witnesses and a security officer to exonerate us from these allegations. And it disproves their only paparazzi photo — which tells a false story.”
He added: “The Italian authorities offered me an opportunity to settle this case by paying a small fine, but I refused because I plead not guilty to harming an animal. There is an ongoing court case so I can’t go into the details, but I’m sure we’ll win when I have my day in court.”
An insider told The Wrap that a dolly allegedly killed a homing pigeon mid-take. A member of the series claims to have witnessed the accident and sent a photo of the scene to the Italian authorities. Since Bay was the director of the film during production, he is held responsible.
Pigeons are a protected species in Italy under national laws that make it illegal to kill, harm or capture wild birds; the EU bird protection directive also protects the species.
6 Underground starred Ryan Reynolds as a billionaire who fakes his death and forms a vigilante squad of five others, played by Manuel Garcia-Rulfo, Dave Franco, Adria Arjona, Ben Hardy and Corey Hawkins. The film was written and produced by “Deadpool” co-writers Rhett Reese and Paul Wernick. Principal photography began on July 30, 2018, and took place in Rome, Florence, Sienna, and Taranto, and was completed on December 5, 2018.
Netflix announced in July 2021 that the expensive, $150 million action film would not receive a sequel. The streamer’s head of original movies, Scott Stuber, said: “We didn’t feel like we got there creatively. It was a nice blow, but at the end of the day we didn’t feel like we fought back. There just wasn’t that deep love for the characters or the world.”
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