Belfast Telegraph

Thursday 23 October 2014

Wag Uggie is Hollywood's top dog

Uggie, from the film The Artist, arrives at the first annual Golden Collar Awards in Los Angeles (AP)

It may be a bone of contention, but even four-legged actors can get awards in Tinseltown - and six top dogs duly collected prizes at the inaugural Golden Collar Awards.

The ceremony at the Hyatt Regency Century Plaza Hotel proceeded like a traditional Hollywood-style awards show, with actors including NCIS star Pauley Perrette and Hot In Cleveland star Wendie Malick presenting trophies for the best canine performances on the big and small screens.

Uggie, the four-legged star of The Artist, was named top dog in a movie. His owner-trainer Omar Von Muller was on hand to accept the award.

Von Muller said the Jack Russell terrier, who stole hearts in the silent film that is up for 10 Oscars, was a "great performer, but he's also a great family member", adding: "He sleeps with us."

The Golden Collar Awards, dreamed up by Alan Siskind of the website dognewsdaily.com, drew other stars of The Artist, including James Cromwell and Missi Pyle, as well as studio representatives and media outlets from around the world.

"I'm delighted to be here because I owe my career to a pig," said Cromwell, who played the farmer in Babe.

The ceremony walked a fine line between being a farce of an awards show and a meaningful recognition of dog and trainer achievements. Proceedings were broadcast online by the Hollywood Reporter, and Mr Siskind said he expected the ceremony to be televised next year.

Martin Scorsese, who wrote an editorial in the Los Angeles Times that inspired a write-in campaign for the doberman in his Oscar-nominated movie Hugo, appeared at the ceremony by video. His star dog Blackie lost out to Uggie, who was nominated twice in his category (for both The Artist and Water For Elephants.)

Other winners included French bulldog Brigitte, who plays Stella on TV's Modern Family, and Hercules of Pit Boss, who tied with Giggy of Real Housewives of Beverly Hills for best dog in a reality television series.

Shorty Rossi, star of Pit Boss, noted: "This is the first time a pit bull's been nominated for anything."

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Your Horoscopes by Russell Grant

Scorpio:

It's important to treat yourself well. Constantly deferring to others will deprive you of the finer things in life. Carve time out of your busy schedule to pamper yourself. Taking a nap, solitary walk or hot bath will revive your spirits. Get into the habit of spending more money on creature comforts. Treat such as gourmet food, beautiful clothes and intriguing books are investments in your happiness. Others may object at being put farther down on your list of priorities, but that's their problem.More