We had the movie shoot with Wyn for 6.5 hours Wednesday night – flew across the continent Thursday, flew back Saturday (arriving at 11 pm) and were back on location yesterday for 11 hours. Brody and Sampson as well as 2 of our cats were extras in yesterday’s scenes along with 4 good humoured Sheltland Sheepdogs, 2 Cocker Spaniels and a darling Jack Russell. All the animal cast were amazing. They barked when required and were largely quiet when required. Brody got a little whiny in the last shot – I presumed he was bored and tired when in fact he was just telling me he needed to pee! He was a good boy and waited to be sprung but I felt badly making him wait.
While I bet a great deal of the action ends up on the cutting room floor I was, again, astounded by Sally. She barked angrily when needed, came up to the front of her kennel when needed, was fine with Wyn being put in her crate take after take after take, stayed in her crate after being cuddled in a long shot that meant I couldn’t ask her to stay formally, worked on opening her crate without actually opening it (she did demonstrate her latch opening skill more than once though!).She did everything asked of her and a little more. Wyn (he plays 2 roles in the film) was perfect too, dozily wandering around on cue, being very sad and pathetic as required. This was Sampson’s acting debut and he was simply super too.
I asked Big T to work with me (thinking it was a half day shoot) and he was a super trooper too – keeping Sam stress free and happy is not always an easy task but Big T did a masterful job. I had other much valued sets of hand around to help too. I cannot emphasize the importance of an awesome support team for big complicated animal scenes; Big T, Shelly, Liz, and Kathryn all made sure the animals and the animal support teams were comfortable and looked after. Rick, Jean, Devon, Sue, Deb and family were just amazing to work with – they trusted us to take good care of their family – we did our best!