SAO PAULO – A theater in Sao Paulo, the largest city in Brazil, literally went to the dogs over the weekend, opening its doors to about 180 canines of all breeds and sizes, and allowing them to “help” their owners watch “A Dog’s Way Home” during a special screening.
The 250-seat theater completely filled up on Sunday after being prepared to welcome its dozens of furry guests with seat covers and rugs.
The dogs were watched by professional trainers during the screening of the movie, a family film that stars Ashley Judd, Jonah Hauer-King and Edward James Olmos.
There was plenty of water and food for the 180 canines that filled the theater auditorium at the Frei Caneca shopping center, located on one of the busiest streets in the industrial city.
“A Dog’s Way Home,” directed by American Charles Martin Smith, is based on the book of the same name that tells the story of a dog named Bella that goes on a more than 640-kilometer (400-mile) journey through the Colorado wilderness looking for her owner, a medical student, and touches the lives of many other people along the way.
The pooches sat on the floor, in the seats and some on the laps of their owners.
Both humans and dogs left the theater happy, relaxed and with a full belly.
One woman said she decided to “bring the whole family” and arrived at the theater with three small dogs.
The process for entering the theater was not easy because the only access to the auditorium is via two elevators, and many owners had to carry their pets as if they were babies.
Knowing that dogs have certain needs and accidents are bound to happen, the theater’s management provided owners with plastic bags and asked them to pick up after their furry friends.
The film, which was shot in British Columbia, Canada, and premiered in the United States on Jan. 11, will arrive in Brazilian theaters on Feb. 28.
“A Dog’s Way Home” has had a successful run around the world, taking in an estimated $29 million, according to IMDB.