There's a classic production adage that says never work with children or animals because they can both be difficult to work with. Well, this week we broke that rule by bringing in a dog, pony and monkey into GP Studios.
When DP Brad Hinton told me we were doing a 'dog and pony' shoot in the studios I thought he was talking about a marketing presentation. No, he literally meant a 'dog and pony' shoot.
Filmed as part of an internal marketing presentation, the miniature pony and dog were a great on screen gag. I can't tell you exactly what the project was or how they were used, but suffice it to say, when that little pony rears up on it's hind legs, it's an impressive sight!
Then came the monkey. For such a tiny little animal, it has the loudest shriek I've ever heard. I was out in the loading bay about a hundred yards away when he started shrieking from Studio A and it hurt my ears!
Turns out this was the monkey's first filming project so the combination of a strange location, cameras, lights and a lot of people made him a bit nervous at first. But once he got the hang of the place and tons of attention from the crew, he settled right in and did an amazing job. All in all, I found that yes, we CAN work with animals on set because even if they do flub their marks a few times, they're just so darn cute to have around. They make everyone smile.