15 August 2022
There is nothing more brilliant than an adorable dog as the main character or sidekick in a film. The bond between dogs and humans is often celebrated in movies, whether it’s in classic cartoons or iconic musicals. Here are 8 of our favorite famous pooches from movies to TV.
Breed: Jack Russell Terrier
Eddie, whose real name is Moose, is an essential character on Frasier. His portrayal as the annoyance to Frasier’s perfect (overly so) harmony endears him to us all. We’re all pretty sure he’s annoying Frasier on purpose. Eddie is Frasier’s dad’s (Martin Crane’s) dog. Eddie’s character matches that of Frasier’s dad. In true Jack Russel Terrier form, Eddie is energetic, lovable, tricky, sneaky, annoying, and endearing all at once.
Toto’s specific breed of terrier has varied over time and in different movies. In the books, he was regarded as “a small terrier”. There is debate over which terrier species he is. Toto is perhaps the most famous movie dog in the world. Everyone knows the story of The Wizard of Oz and the names Dorothy and Toto. The catchphrases “We’re not in Kansas anymore” and “don’t pay any attention to the man behind the curtain” are so common they are now standards in the American English language. Toto provides an essential character for Dorothy to talk to, revealing her inner narrative. He also represents home in this unfamiliar land. It is hard to imagine the Wizard of Oz without him.
Breed: Jack Russell Terrier
Milo is played by Max. Max is a Jack Russel Terrier and, like all dogs of this breed, is lovable, intelligent, sneaky, and tricky. Max is a perfect dog representation of Jim Carrey’s character Stanley Ipkiss. Both of them have sweet gentle personalities concealing a witty wild fun-loving side. When they wear the mask their true qualities as pranksters and tricksters come out. This is perfect for Jack Russel’s as they have a sneaky side under their sweet adorable exterior. Milo is completely loyal to Stanley and the two are a fantastic and clever team.
Bruiser’s real name is Moonie or Moondoggie. He was Elle Wood’s (Reese Witherspoon’s) purse doggie in Legally Blonde. I think this dog may have spawned the valley girl purse doggie craze which is still going on. Bruiser adds to Elle’s fish out of water appeal and gives her a confidant to talk to allowing us to better understand her character’s feelings. Bruiser’s cuteness matches that of Elle and provides a bonding agent when Elle later meets Paulette Bonafonté (Jennifer Coolidge) the nail salon technician whose ex took her dog, Rufus, an English Bulldog. Their love for their canine friends creates an instant bond between them.
Breed: Rough Collie
Lassie is a time immemorial dog who is a friend to all and a problem solver for the people around her. Lassie personifies, or rather dogifies, the commmon phrase “man’s best friend”. The original Lassie was played by a dog named Pal. Following the popularity of “Lassie Come Home” Pal was granted the name Lassie legally from the studio and set off on a career being Lassie at rodeos and fairs. Pal’s descendants continued the Lassie tradition and are today still portraying the Lassie character.
Breed: Pembroke Welsh Corgi
Ein is the super cute comic relief and ongoing mystery in Cowboy Beebop, a Netflix movie version of the popular anime series. Ein is played by twin corgies Charlie and Harry from New Zealand. I think my favorite scene in season one was when Ed (Daniella Pineda) steals Spike’s (John Cho) personal transport with Ein on her lap. It’s adorable. In an interview, the actors said that keeping the Corgies’ attention was difficult so they would bribe them with food to keep them engaged. No price for such cuteness is too high.
Gidget is famous for doing Taco Bell commercials in the late 1990s and early 2000s. Her cuteness made the catchphrase “Yo quiero Taco Bell” (I want Taco Bell) an English language standard in the United States. Ironically the voice provided to Gidget was that of a male, Carlos Alazraqui. Gidget lived with Moonie (Bruiser) from Legally Blonde mentioned above. She played Bruiser’s mom in Legally Blonde 2 and appeared in GEICO insurance commercials as well. The dogs who affect human language are especially significant and Gidget is certainly one of those dogs.
Breed: French Mastiff
Hooch (real name Beasley) was the slovenly counterpart to Turner’s (Tom Hanks) neat fetish. Basically “The Odd Couple” but this time with a dog and human. Hooch cutely makes messes, acts disgusting, and slobers all over everything. Tom Hanks’s reactions are hilarious. The two hate each other at first but grow to form a bond and become inseparable buddies. The movie is made real and elevated to something more than comedy when Hooch heroically saves Turner and later dies as a result. This death after endearing you with Hooch’s character is hard to take and bonds Hooch even closer to the heart.