MOVIE NEWS – The dog in Prey was an inexperienced, “high-energy” dog that sometimes made filming difficult, but the cast and crew loved him anyway.
There are plenty of indigenous actors in the film, as it is set in 1700s America and stars a Comanche tribesman, Naru, played by Amber Midthunder. The character is not alone for most of the film, however, as his faithful companion Sarii, also a “native” and thus a member of an ancient dog race, accompanies him almost everywhere. Sarii was played on set by a dog named Coco, who was explicitly adopted for the film.
Amber Midthunder and Dan Trachtenberg spoke about this in an interview with Dexerto, where they revealed that they had to be very patient with the dog, as it was not trained to do this. Coco is an “American dingo”, also known as a Carolina dog, one of the oldest dog breeds. The breed’s ancestors probably conquered the new continent with humans across the Bering Strait. It is a fairly intelligent breed, full of energy, a little shy, and similar in temperament to its Australian cousin, the dingo, and ancient Japanese species such as the Siba Inu and the Akita.
According to Midthunder, there is much to be said for Coco, but not that he was a well-trained dog, and the actress described him as a disaster of sorts, of course, of the most lovable breed. But that’s what the makers took on because, without prior training, it was expected that it would be challenging to work with him, but the cuteness of the animal compensated them:
“I have to say it was difficult – but in the cutest possible way. He’s not a trained dog for filming; he was adopted to be in this film, but he just happens to be a joyful animal. It was an amazing pleasure to have him on the set, and he’s an amusing, very playful dog. And then when we had to do something in front of the cameras… Well, sometimes he did, sometimes he didn’t. But it was all right in the end; he was great, and everybody loved him.”
The idea of the protagonist having a four-legged companion came from the Mad Max sequel, in which an Australian shepherd dog called “Dog” is seen alongside Mel Gibson. Dan Trachtenberg, who directed the film, revealed that Coco was basically very well behaved but sometimes got a little too excited:
“She was very excitable, very energetic. He was very energetic and very energetic. It was very exciting, and there was a lot of jubilation from the crew when we finally managed to get a shot of Coco on the set as planned.”
Source : Movieweb