Big pat for collie in Palm Dog awards

'Highly competitive year' for canines in Cannes

by Richard Mowe

Border collie Snoop nabs top prize in the Palm Dog awards
Border collie Snoop nabs top prize in the Palm Dog awards Photo: Le Pacte
Never mind the glittering Cannes Film Festival main prizes to be revealed this evening, the gongs for canine performances - the Palm Dog Awards - already have been announced in a year in which the judges have been spoilt for choice.

The top prize has gone to Messi, a border collie who plays Snoop in Justine Triet’s Anatomy of a Fall. Triet has said that the character of Snoop “was not just another character or some animal running around [but] as much a part of the film’s ensemble as any of the other actors”.

Founder of the awards Toby Rose said it had been “a highly competitive” year. The jury had created three new categories - The Mutt Moment for best dog cameo (won by a canine who appears in Alice Rohrwacher’s La Chimera); a highly commended award for the dog in Stéphan Castang’s Vincent Must Die and a lifetime achievement award for Ken Loach for celebrating “the bond between human and animals and for canines in particular”. In Loach’s The Oak Tree the antics of a mongrel called Lola caught the judges’ attention.

Four-legged Alma in Aki Kaurismäki‘s Fallen Leaves took the Grand Jury prize.

Meanwhile animal lover and activist Isabella Rossellini (a co-star of La Chimera), received this year’s Palm Dogmanitarian award for her activist work on behalf of canines.

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