With each new year it seems comes at least one new live-action Disney remake. As animals often star in these films, that means work opportunities for talented animal actors. Parker the Dalmatian is one of those lucky stars.
Parker appears in the latest Disney movie, a live-action telling of the story of Cruella de Vil from the 1961 animated classic 101 Dalmatians. He plays one of three Dalmatians owned by Emma Thompson’s character the Baroness von Hellman.
According to his rescuer and trainer, Jennifer Mohr, he earned the part easily.
“So they love him, they loved his look, they cast-typed him right away. They say they loved him and we want him for the movie!”
Evidently, Parker both looks the regal part and acts the loyal companion well. His main job in the film is to accompany and protect Thompson’s character.
“A lot of the scenes she’s in, they were in too, either just kind of hanging out by her side, walking them through a lot of the parties.”
Cruella is still only available online via Disney+ premier access, but soon it will be available for regular streaming on the app. You could also see it the old-fashioned way in select theaters (though post-pandemic availability may vary.)
From Rescued To Movie Star
As is the case with many purebred dogs, Parker originally came from a breeder, but Mohr took him in as a rescue dog from the Missouri family who originally adopted him.
“I drove up there and I got to meet him and as soon as I met him, I was like, he’s the one! I want to take him home, love on him and train him and work with him, and there he is!”
Mohr lives in Central Florida and works for a company that trains animals and runs a show at Universal Studios. Due to their skills, these animals often get scouted by production companies.
In fact, this isn’t even Parker’s first movie role. The 4-year-old Dalmatian also played a small role in Disney’s live-action version of ‘Lady and the Tramp.’
In the three years Mohr has had Parker, the rescue pup has really come into his own. It’s hard to believe this once shy dog is now a movie star!
“From when I picked him up, from this timid, shy, kind of nervous-about-everything dog, to this dog that came out of his shell, was able to go into a major production and do really well, everyone loved him – of course, I’m proud of him!”
Though Dalmatians became popular in the 60s and again in the late 90s due to their depiction in the Disney movies, they’re actually considered high-maintenance dogs and aren’t recommended for inexperienced owners. Still, you can’t deny how gorgeous their coats look on screen and how smart the breed is. It’s no wonder they make great movie stars.
H/T: Fox 35
Featured Image: Instagram