Animal

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An animal is the legal term for any non-human terrestrial living creature working in Hollywood. This does not extend to aliens (which are not terrestrial) or mutants (which are officially classified under the law as hazardous materials). Many animals have developed human-level intelligence from decades of exposure to the film industry, which prizes the ability to perform tricks on cue from all living creatures, not just human beings.

Physiology

"What you need to understand, kid, is that animals in Hollywood? Two types: walking or talking. Anything else ends up as lunchmeat."

"Don't most animals walk?"

"Oh, la-di-dah! Looks like someone wants to show off his fancy college education."

– Howie Harland & Eli Spencer

Intelligent animals are further divided into two subgroups: anthropomorphic, where the animal in question has developed a physical build roughly on par for a human being of the same size and weight, and talking, where they have not.

Anthropomorphic animals (often shortened to anthros) are technically mutations, although since there is no clear defining cause of this mutation it gets widely ignored. Their broadly humanoid appearance is not just limited to a bipedal stance and opposable thumbs, it also includes a more expressive face. Anthropomorphic animals also can posses such peculiarities as the ability to grow facial hair, even if they already have fur. It is theorized that the ambient weirdness of Hollywood forces humanizing traits upon everything that resides there, to which some demographics are innately more receptive.

Talking animals (often shortened to talkers) are not completely biologically identical to their non-talking peers. Like anthros, they have more expressive faces, which may have been necessary to develop the capacity for speech. Many exhibit very human mannerisms when they talk, such as gesturing, although their gestures tend to be constrained by their inhuman shape. It is hard to snap one's fingers if one has no fingers, for example.

Culture

Animals in Hollywood did not gain any special rights until 1964, before which they were frequently exploited and underpaid by studios. "Working for hay" was a common expression, animals hired without pay but compensated by three meals a day, although usually of very cheap quality. Very few animals made it to the big time in early Hollywood, and even the rare exceptions still faced discrimination and prejudice throughout their careers.

Demographics of Hollywood
AliensAnimalsCryptidsDevilsHumansMutantsPuppetsRobotsToons