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Posted December 6, 2006

 

"Air Buddies" World Premiere!

The Walt Disney Studio Goes To The Dogs

By

William & Alexandria Kallay

 

Let's face it.  Disney can't resist cute, cuddly puppies, nor can we.  The Walt Disney Studios held a special premiere of the new DVD feature, "Air Buddies," on the famous lot where Walt himself produced a number of dog related animated features, cartoon shorts and live action films.  The screening was also for the Young Presidents' Organization (YPO) of which director Robert Vince is a member.

 

The "Air Bud" franchise has been a boon for Disney.  Carrying the tradition of canine capers like the original "101 Dalmatians" (1961), the "Air Bud" series of movies follows the adventures of a sports loving golden retriever who can play anything from basketball to soccer, while thwarting bad guys out to get him.  In this newest sequel, the puppies have taken over the mantle of cuteness and playful adventures.  This time, the puppies are on the run from two bumbling crooks (Paul Rae and Trevor Wright).  Unlike the previous films, these puppies talk through the magic of computer generated imagery (CGI).

 

For this premiere, many from the film's cast arrived on the red carpet including Richard Karn, Paul Rae, Trevor Wright, Tyler Guerrero, Christian Pikes, Sklyer Gisondo, director/writer/producer Robert Vince, composer Brahm Wenger and animal coordinators Anne Gordon and Georgina Murphy.  But the "real" stars of the film were the main attraction.  Only 2 months old, Budderball, B-Dawg, Rosebud, Bud-dha and Mudbud were allowed to be cuddled by guests.  The puppies were very behaved, though according to animal coordinator Gordon, they're not normally this quiet.

 

My daughter, Alexandria, was totally thrilled to join me for this premiere.  After all, she loves animals as much as any kid does, and since there were golden retriever puppies involved, she just had to go!  As you will see below in our photo gallery, she got to hold some of the puppies.

 

During the puppy playing and meeting the stars of the film, guests were invited into the famous Walt Disney Studio Commissary for dinner which included bite sized pigs-in-a-blanket, mac & cheese and a variety of delicious desserts.  The press was then invited into a conference with the stars and director before the film was screened in the studio theatre. 

  

"Air Buddies" is a fast paced film aimed at children ages 4-11.  The movie is perhaps the best of the series in that the story borrows from other Disney canine classics like "Lady And The Tramp" (1955) and the aforementioned "101 Dalmatians," while maintaining its own trademark of showing remarkable dogs in action.  Director Vince has an affection for these dogs and he keeps the film's action going with lots of chases and silly sight gags that will amuse children and their parents, as well.  Keep a lookout for voice cameos by the late Don Knotts, Michael Clarke Duncan, Tom Everett Scott, Molly Shannon and a hilarious cameo by Wallace Shawn.  Also featured in the film as the town sheriff is the late Patrick Cranshaw.

 

"Air Buddies" will be released on DVD December 12.

 

B-Dawg

Alexandria, B-Dawg and animal coordinator Georgina Murphy

Budderball is the football playing puppy

Richard Karn ("Patrick") and Alexandria

Mudbud

Alexandria holds Rosebud

Bud-dah

Paul Rae ("Denning") and Alexandria

Mickey Mouse topiary

Tyler Guerrero ("Bartleby Livingston") and Alexandria

Rae and Trevor Wright ("Grim")

Writer/Director/Producer of "Air Buddies," Robert Vince

Alexandria stands on the corner of Mickey Avenue & Dopey Drive

Special thanks to Mac McLean and Alexandria Kallay


All photos 2006 William Kallay.  All rights reserved.

 

 

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