Hollywood's Biggest Animal Stars: Where Are They Now?
From Uggie ("The Artist") to Ted Nudegent ("Austin Powers"), THR catches up with six of the four-legged creatures who made a big impression on moviegoers.
Uggie from 2011’s The Artist
The Oscar-winning movie’s four-legged star is taking a break from Hollywood after years of training, following promotional travels to France and England for his autobiography Uggie: My Story. “He’s actually being a dog and going out for walks,” jokes owner Omar Von Muller. “The fame didn’t go to his head.”
Cosmo from 2010’s Beginners
Ewan McGregor’s Jack Russell terrier companion will be featured in Welcome to Me, set to begin shooting this month, as well as musical movie Lucky Stiff, expected to be released in 2014. “Cosmo works all the time,” trainer Mathilde DeCagny says. “He likes to stay busy.”
Clyde from 2008’s Marley & Me
The rowdy, furniture-wrecking pooch from the family film has recently wrapped on upcoming release Oculus. DeCagny (who also trains Cosmo) describes Clyde’s breakthrough role to be a close representation of his hyper off-screen personality. “His mind is all over the place,” she says. “He always needs to be put back into working mode.”
Popcorn Deelites from 2003’s Seabiscuit
The star has shifted gears from the racetrack to the paddock at Old Friends, a retirement home for thoroughbred racehorses. Old Friends founder Michael Blowen confesses that though Popcorn is a favorite among visitors, his stunts in the film were CGI’d: “Popcorn Deelites wasn’t a great racehorse, but he’s an actor.”
Ted Nudegent as Mr. Bigglesworth from 1997’s Austin Powers
Though Dr. Evil’s sidekick passed away a few years ago, his nephews, Hairless Potter and Skindiana Jones, are continuing the second generation of Sphynx cat actors and have been featured in FX’s American Horror Story and 2007’s I Know Who Killed Me. Trainer Tammy Maples expressed that contrary to their horrifying roles, Sphynx cats are an affectionate breed. “As long as they’re interacting with people, they’re happy,” she says.
Moonie as Bruiser from 2001’s Legally Blonde
With the exception of a few commercial features, the stylish Legally Blonde star has retreated from the big screen. “He’s kind of retired at this point, since he’s about 14 to 15 years old,” says trainer Sue Chipperton. Often seen decked out in sweaters and headgear in the comedy film, Moonie had to be trained to keep his hat on while cameras were rolling. Says Chipperton: Along with being fed treats, “it was part of his reward to have it taken off."