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While HBO Max’s genera+ion has yet to premiere, the show is already making headlines due to a very disturbing rumor that turned out to be true. The show’s executive producer, Lena Dunham, recently spoke out about the allegations that there was a scene that used dead cats for a high school biology dissection after HBO Max cut the scene from the upcoming teen drama.
Rumors of the show’s decision to use real dead cats spread on Twitter last week after a user wrote that a friend with knowledge of the show said they had brought in real dead kittens for background to dissect on set, that there was no warning and people had trauma responses. Lena Dunham, whose shows have pushed boundaries before, said in a statement to People that she wasn’t aware of the plans for the scene before it happened, but supports the decision to cut it out of the show. Dunham said:
I am committed in my life and work to the principled, humane and ethical treatment of animals. I don't use animal cadavers in any of my work, ever, and I was not on set or aware that they were used in a recently shot scene depicting a biology classroom assignment. I fully support the scene being edited out of the show.
Earlier this week, a spokesperson for HBO Max commented on the controversy, saying in a statement to Variety that the production filmed scenes depicting a biology classroom assignment involving dissection of animal specimens. They were ethically sourced in consultation with American Humane via a biological supply company that works with schools. Furthermore, the spokesperson said that two extras had decided to leave the series as a result of the scene.
Premiering on March 11, 2021, genera+ion tells the story about a group of high school students who explore their sexuality in a modern world, which tests their deeply entrenched beliefs about life, love and family in their conservative community. The series stars Goonies veteran Martha Plimpton, Justice Smith, Chloe East, Michael Johnston, Nava Mau, Haley Sanchez, Uly Schlesinger, Nathanya Alexander, Lukita Maxwell, Chase Sui Wonders and Nathan Stewart-Jarrett.
HBO Max’s upcoming series already being known as controversial is not a good sign. But with the Girls actress speaking out about what happened and how dedicated she is to making sure animals are being treated ethically and humanely, hopefully the streaming service won’t have that problem again. genera+ion premieres on HBO Max on March 11, 2021, releasing the first three episodes on that day. The show is created by Zelda and Daniel Barnz.