Tuesday, July 25, 2006


Mars - From marked Mutt to movie star!

Mars - From marked Mutt to movie star!

Mars is one lucky pup. According to the Humane Society of the United States, an estimated 3 to 4 million cats and dogs are euthanized in U.S. shelters every year. And Mars was about to become one of them - until Hollywood came calling.

Actor David Hewlett had just been cast as one of the leads on the hit TV series Stargate Atlantis. Wanting to share his good fortune, he and his girlfriend, producer, Jane loughman, decided to help out at the local animal shelter by volunteering to walk dogs. But Mars nosed his way in their plans.

“He came straight up to us and sat on my foot!” says David, “how could we resist?” The eager but fragile rottweiler-terrier mutt was scheduled to be destroyed. at the tender age of eleven months, he’d been diagnosed with severe hip dysplasia and could only take 10 minute walks. Nobody was willing to take on such a great responsibility and potential expense. The couple felt differently. How perfect – a big dog with a small dog exercise regimen! David and Jane couldn’t wait to take him home…

After two weeks with his new foster family, Mars was not only happier, his health had literally improved in leaps and bounds. So the couple took Mars to another vet for a second opinion and he was given a clean bill of health. According to vet number two, Mars’ mixed-up heritage had resulted in some bizarre bone structure – and a “supermodel” wiggle! Supplements, lots of exercise and a decent diet have kept him bouncing ever since.

So when David and Jane’s pet project – the comedy feature film “A Dog’s Breakfast” – went into production later that same year, it was obvious who would take the title role. “Mars was the quintessential star” says jane, “he loved being on set, made friends with all the crew, did just what we needed, when we needed it… and all for cookies and a tickle behind the ears!”

If you’d like to see a clip from the upcoming film visit:


“A Dog’s Breakfast” is David Hewlett’s directorial debut, in which he also stars alongside his sister, Kate Hewlett, and fellow Stargate star, Paul McGillion. A nice, clean, family murder, the film reaches out to a potential US audience of over 10 million Stargate fans and 65 million pet owners – of whom 18 % have adopted their pet from a shelter, just like Mars. So as well as being happy and healthy, it looks like Mars may just have a Hollywood hit on his paws.

Mars is a cutie! Can't wait to see his film debut. You are kind people to give him a home.

I'm on my second rescue: a black lab named Madison who was rescued from a puppy mill.

Teaching a 3-year-old to be housetrained. Not so easy....
I'm glad to see a filmmaker taking advantage of the internet to spread the word. It's a route that has been very successful for Kevin Smith and Peter Jackson (and they get to the avoid the cloying studio "filtering").

I've done my part as a fan and added a link to this site from my blog, but I don't think that it will get you much traffic :-) You probably already know this stuff, but I'd recommend looking into getting listed on the following sites:

Rotten Tomatoes

Submitting a film is straightforward, as long as it is listed on IMDB. Go to the FAQ link at the bottom of the page for more info.


Click the contact link at the bottom of the page, really easy to submit film info.

Upcoming movies list on Yahoo

The maintainer of this page can be contacted via the link below "Also Inside" on the left hand side of the page, about half way down.

You can also try the following, but they are not nearly as popular as the above sites:


Use the email link at the bottom of the page


Have to create a free user account to submit info.


To get listed on this site, you need to send a press kit to a physical address, more info about this process is listed in their FAQ, which oddly, is what you get when you click on the "contact" link at the bottom of the page.

You might also want to consider turning on the sitefeed for your blog. Most people aren't going to be interested, but webmasters interested in getting automated updates from you will appreciate it.
On the Blogger dashboard, go to the settings tab, then sitefeed. You will need to publish a link to the xml file that is then generated.

Good luck with the film :-)

For other fans, rent/buy the film "Nothing", David Hewlett shares the writing credit for it, and it's absolutely hilarious (brainy intelligent humor!) "Nothing" is readily available on Amazon.
I have a dog too and have worked in a animal shelter. It´s sadly, what some peoples are doing with her pets. Thank you all peoples which to help the dogs and cats without family and to aid the animal protection.

Mars is a very nice name, but why this name?
He's adorable - all six cats and three dogs at our house (known as Chez Hairball) are rescues. It's great to see someone very successful taking the time to spread the word.
Mars is absolutely adorable!

We didn't rescue our dog from an animal shelter per se, but we found out that her owners were giving her up, and we decided to give her a home :)

I'm hoping to get another dog in the near future, and it'll either be from the shelter or be a retired greyhound.

I'll be adding a link to this blog when I finish redesigning my website!
Hi ! Lucky dog and lucky people... love at first sight does not exist between humans only. So I understand Mars is the pet star of the movie, and not a certain penguin with antlers (if this is the word - i'm not a native speaker) ;-)
I just hope this movie will be released in France as well.
My smartest and best dog, Elliott, came from the pound after choosing us. Mars looks like fun, and he knows a couple of suckers when he sees them, as all intelligent dogs do!

The movie looks like fun, too, and we're always up for a good clean family murder! I hope we will soon be seeing news on releases and/ or festivals.
I can't wait to see this movie. From what I've seen on Youtube, it looks like it has a "Galaxy Quest" feel to it. God knows I don't need any more movie lines added to my everyday dialogue "it exploded"...

My second cat adopted me three months after I got my first. At the time I worked at an eye doctor that was located next to a vet's office. I was helping the vet fit a bandage contact lens on a very ill doggie who had a corneal ulcer that would not heal due to chemotherapy.
I went to the office every day for two weeks and each time there was little ball of fur purring at me. It got to the point where I couldn't physically leave without him. BobaCatt and Zuckuss have been with us for five years and are the best boys.

How great are you!? Thanks for all "webbly" the advice...now just need to find the time to figure it out and do something about it!


Hi h0rrid,

I just added an annoucement and a link to this blog on my Paul McGillion Fan Site.
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no problem :-) I'm an aspiring screenwriter, so I know that bringing an independent film to market is a total act of love. So yeah, take advantage of the internet as much as you can.

I also think it's admirable that you're sharing Mars' story. But people also need be aware of the responsibilty involved in acquiring animal friends.

When I was a kid, my family occasionally raised purebreds, and even though we screened our buyers, one of our pups ended up severely abused and neglected. It was really awful because he had a very gentle disposition, though no animal deserves to be treated that way. Fortunately, we were able to buy him back, and after a couple of months of rehabilitation, we gave him to a trusted friend and he had a happy life.

Too many animals end up in shelters because people can't give the attention, patience, and love that's needed.

take care,
We got our dog from a shelter and it is the best dog we've ever had. She has the sweetest temperament and is so loving.
All the Stargate fans I know (including myself!) are bouncing on their toes waiting for this movie to come out. It looks hilarious in a clever and original way, and Mars is such a perfect leading dog. Just be careful he doesn't outshine the rest of you! ;)
Dogs are man's best friend; Virus is mine now...He is the craziest male labrador i've ever seen and i can't see my life without him. really, dogs are the only species that will love someone forever. it's just sad people aren't half that good!

Now, a little question: Is there an official poster (playbill? sorry, there's still vocabulary i do not have!) for the film? And if so, is Mars the main character on it?

Thank you again for the blog... ;-)
they sound like very good ppl to take such good care of max!

we have 13 kitties and they were all strays and rescueds and abandoneds.

and i hope lots that david and jane are keeping max and are his forever family and not only his foster family!

A mix between a Rottweiler and a terrier.

Forgive me if that didn't conjure up a terrifying mental image of your pup's conception...

** shudder **

I loved Nothing, and because I'm a doe-eyed fan, I attributed all the lines I liked to you and your writerly talents. Nothing at all against the Andrews... erm, Andrei... um... whatever, but I chose to think that saying "We can't be dead-- we have cable" was YOUR idea.

As a result of this, be it truth or self-delusion, I'm looking forward to seeing more of your writing in A Dog's Breakfast, even more now that I know the dog who's breakfasting is such a cutie. All of my pets have been rescues (even the goldfish, though that's a long and elaborate story), and I tip my hat to anyone who's willing to give an animal a second chance at life.

In short, for your writing, and your (and Jane's) kind-heartedness-- may you never lack for praise or chocolate!
It's very sad that people can't seem to give the love and care a pet requires - whatever size or species!

Mars is so cute. I assume that's Mars on the couch in the clip?

Any ideas when the film will get to the UK? Anyone? Please?
I have a shelter kitty! Her name is Pillow and she had some health problems too -- earmites and a pronounced heart murmur that makes her pant like a little dog sometimes. But she's seven years old now (earmites gone but still with the heart issue) and doing well (i.e. very spoiled). I hope for Mars a long and happy life too! Sounds like he has a good and loving home.
Chris, the Dog of Devastating Cuteness +3, is a rescued dog. He's quite the character. And yay Mars!
It's awesome that a) the animal was adopted a shelter (they really do get the short end of the stick, especially at kill shelters) but mostly b) that all three were able to become a family. Pets have a way of making humbling anyone. I worked at a vet/boarding kennel and there are a lot more animals being adopted if that was any indication. Most of us there had adopted our "kids" (A very intellectually-stunted kitten is my contribution of helping out, but she's my little idiot, so it's all love. I mean this is the cat that slides into doors in order to catch a ball and doesn't bat an eye.) and a lot of the clients. Heck, we even would help rehome pets before the shelter was an option.

Working there made me love Rotts even more, though. Such sweet dogs if treated right, and makes me heart ache when they get taken to shelters because the people getting the dogs are unwilling to rearrange certain aspects to create a happy home. Er, that would be my way saying I'm just extremely jealous of Mars (Great name too! Very unique). I want a Rott/Rott mix but it'll be awhile. But! Now I can see the movie *and* get my puppy fix at the same time. See that is just efficiency at its best.
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I already added you to my blogroll over at my main blog, The Oubliette. I'll pimp your site in a separate post, too, help get the word out.

Hope you don't mind us crazy cat people, because that's who will be heading over from my site.
As a newly addicted SGA and David Hewlett fan. I for one can hardly wait until this movie is available for viewing. The teaser looks wonderfully funny. I think I can see a little McKay in Patrick. He seems to have the snarky comments going, which is what I love the most about McKay.
I love the dog and the fact that it was rescued from a shelter makes it even more special. I wish more people would consider a visit to their local shelter before chosing a pet. Unfortunately, the last time I rescued a cat I was attacked by it on the way to the door at my house and had to pay a visit to the ER for a shot and antibotics. Apparently it did not want to meet my 2 dogs. Needless to say, we were allowed to exchange that kitty for a younger, nicer one that was more 'dog friendly'.

Keep up the wonderful work.
God Bless!

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I also have a "supermodel" shelter dog. With her it wasn't her hips, but her picky eating. If she doesn't like the food, she'll starve rather than eat it, and we therefore dubbed her "Supermodel Waif Dog." (Although her name is actually Jaye.) She was quite thin when we got her from the Denver Dumb Friends League. She's filled out since then, but still is a rather picky thing. Hope that the movie makes it to Denver!
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One can find the best and most caring animals in shelters. That's where we got our Bassett/Beagle mix Molly and my cat, Riley. Both were very close to being euthanized. Riley was a day a way (he was only given THIRTY DAYS!!!) and Molly, we're not sure, but she had been previously adopted by two different families, both of whom decided to bring her back to the shelter.

Good for Jane and yourself for getting an animal from a shelter!

And Mars is terribly adorable. He has a cute smile. :)
Lovely dog.

Grew up with a dog that had severe hip dysplasia (giant schnauzer) and the arthritis was pronounced in his old age but he was pretty happy and normal ... well, not normal, not in our family.

Things that helped his aches: hot water bottle on cold days, a big old sweatshirt he stone from my sibling and a hand-held massager, one of the ones for scalp massage.

He looooooooooved getting the massager.

My dog adopted me too! I'd just posted our story on your blog.

As a dog lover and a DH fan, I'll be there wherever they show your film.
This is so cool!!
I also have a street dog (sorry, ex-street dog) her name is “Pulga” (it means “Flea” cause she use to be such a tinny dog *sight*).

I rescue her mother from the street and found her a home, and now my puppy is the cutest of her first litter.
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