About Dog Days + Movie Review
I recently had the opportunity to see a press screening of Dog Days, a new family film starring Vanessa Hudgens, Eva Longoria, Adam Pally, Rob Corddry, Nina Dobrev, Tig Notaro, and Tone Bell (to name just a few of the fantastic ensemble cast). Just from the cast list alone, you can tell you’re in for a treat when you go to see this film. The feel-good, family film genre has always been my favorite. I went into the screening of Dog Days hoping it would fit the bill, and it exceeded my expectations! Dog Days is that rare combination of family-friendly, feel good, humor, while also having a lot of heart and addressing real life family, relationship (and pet relationship) dynamics.
The premise of the film follows five storylines, each concerning different dogs in different ways. Some are family relationships, romantic relationships, and friendships. By the end of the film, the five stories connect and intertwine with each other in incredibly touching ways, truly showcasing the meaningfulness dogs have in our lives. Dog Days balances the five storylines well, bringing out some very thoughtful elements as they crisscrossed against each other. And with all the adorable dogs on screen, this is definitely a film that kids will enjoy, along with the whole family! It’s one of the best family films I’ve seen in recent years, I highly recommend seeing it for the perfect family movie night! The film releases in theaters August 8th. You can find tickets for it here.
Interviews With the Director + Cast of Dog Days
At the Four Seasons in Beverly Hills, myself and other fellow entertainment bloggers had the honor of getting to interview some of the cast of Dog Days! In attendance was director Ken Marino, and actors Vanessa Hudgens, Eva Longoria, Nina Dobrev, Adam Pally, and Tone Bell.
Q: Did working on this film increase your affinity for dogs?
Tone Bell: I definitely fell more in love with the furry friends through the process and then thereafter. Maverick [Nina Dobrev’s dog] was on set everyday…Maverick is like my niece now!
Q: What was the most challenging part about working with all the dogs?
Vanessa Hudgens: Not being distracted and wanting to cuddle them all day! They’re just so cute and well-behaved and smart. In between set-ups I would try to sneak away and play with the dogs.
Q: There was great chemistry all around – was there anything you did on set to create that dynamic chemistry between the different story lines?
Ken Marino: To get the best performances, I let the actors do their thing and I step in every once in a while. It’s just about letting people follow their instincts and do their thing, and just peel and cut.
Eva Longoria (on working with Ken Marino): It’s so great to have an actor/director since they speak your language. There’s so many directors who can’t articulate what they want. I love Ken’s funny, it’s my kind of funny. So I knew we would be in good hands.
Nina Dobrev on becoming a part of Dog Days: I had just rescued Maverick three weeks before I got the script and saw “dog” in the title and said “yes!” Then I actually read it and was like “Oh, this is cute!” I absolutely love the story and I wanted to work with dogs, and I knew Ken was really talented. And that was all accurate – I was really happy to be part of this film.
Q: [To Ken Marino] Why is it important for you to direct family friendly films?
Ken Marino on Making Dog Days: I wanted to do a movie I could share with my children. This movie came along and I really liked all the relationships in it. And as we said earlier I’m a big dog lover and my kids have two rescues at home, so I thought it was a good time to do it. And right now, it’s important to have movies where you can just bring your whole family and escape the madness out there, and watch a movie that’s funny, will maybe make you cry once or twice. And the fact that it’s for adults and kids. My friend described it as a Pixar movie, there’s jokes in it for adults and stuff for kids in there. And that’s the hope, that it’s for everybody and everybody enjoys it.