April 11, 2012 at 10:21 AM ET
This isn't the PETA Jennifer Lawrence wants to be messing around with.
The animal-rights organization was rather annoyed by the actress saying "screw PETA" in response to Rolling Stone's questions about the infamous squirrel-skinning scene in her breakout film, "Winter's Bone."
"I should say it wasn't real, for PETA -- but screw PETA," joked Lawrence, whose fake hunting skills also took center stage in "The Hunger Games."
But now People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals is out to remind her that even just the idea of killing furry creatures is no laughing matter.
"She's young and the plight of animals somehow hasn't yet touched her heart," PETA president Ingrid Newkirk said in a statement Tuesday.
"As Henry David Thoreau said,'The squirrel you kill in jest, dies in earnest.' When people kill animals, it is the animals who are 'screwed,' not PETA, and one day I hope she will try to make up for any pain she might cause any animal who did nothing but try to eke out a humble existence in nature."
But Lawrence, who did have to learn how to realistically skin a squirrel for "Winter's Bone" and ended up with an Oscar nomination, didn't enjoy it or anything.
The Kentucky native told E! News in June 2010 that a friend of her brother's demonstrated the icky skill for her. "He cut it open and then I went and cried in the house and let him finish," she said.
But maybe PETA has already decided not to go to war with the hottest young star around....
"That was just a throw-away remark," Newkirk added later in the day to E! News, "and we have our bet on Jennifer ending up joining the ranks of other young celebrities like Natalie Portman, Lea Michele, and Kellan Lutz who are using their influence to help animals."