In an interview with the The Vulture, Luck executive producers David Milch and Michael Mann answered charges by People for the Ethical Treatment of Animal that the critically acclaimed HBO series used drugged, aging horses to film several racing sequences at Arcadia's Santa Anita Park.
The show, filmed at , was canceled March 14, The first two horses reportedly died during filming; the third death occurred as a handler was leading a horse to its stall when the animal startled, reared back and hit its head, causing fatal injuries.
Milch told Vulture that the production adhered strictly to the Arabian Horse Association guidelines in dealing with the horses.
"I was embarrassed for PETA when I read some of their statements, [of ] the savage ignorance of the realities of what we were doing ... They talked about 5-year olds being too old to race. A 5-year-old is in the absolute prime of his racing life! They [said] that the horses were found to have been medicated at necropsy [Editor's note: an autopsy performed on an animal]. Well, of course they were [found to have been] medicated at necropsy. They’d been medicated in the aftermath of being injured! This was beyond irresponsibility, the distortion that took place in order to make those accusations.
Asked where the plot was headed prior to the show's cancellation, Mann said , Ace Bernstein, would have been forced to deal with personal demons.
Ace had also elevated himself [beyond] his origins of maybe 30 years ago. In season two, Ace was gonna find himself brought back, right to the way he had been as a man at 30 or 40 years ago, right back into those dark places, with some of the actions he was gonna be compelled to have to do.