Posted by Kitty Sharkey , Monday, July 4, 2011 11:37 PM
Today Sammy and I went on a photo shoot for the movie poster of Unicorns. I wasn't sure what to expect since the address was way up at the top of the hill in Piedmont. When I got there, I quickly found out that we just needed to chill for an hour. They were doing some shots inside and then we were heading off to some other location where Sammy would have his photo shoot..
Let me just say that this was a multi-gazillion dollar house that we were at. We hung out front for a few minutes. Sammy enjoyed some dried leaves along the sidewalk and thankfully decided to do his business out there on the grassy strip. Then we were told we could hang out in the backyard until they were ready. It'd be much more comfortable for Sammy than staying in the crate in the car.
The back yard was immaculate. Manicured lawn and shrubs, a beautiful play area for the kids. We headed over to the play area because it was shady. But I quickly realized it wasn't shredded wood chips on the ground, but rather some recycled (I hope) rubber material made to look like wood chips. It was nice and cushy. But I didn't want to take any chances that Sammy might eat it.
I looked around the yard discouraged. There wasn't any other shade. I didn't know if any of the plants might be toxic. And that grass looked like it was awfully green, a sure sign that they might use chemical fertilizers. My gut feeling was to head back out to the parking strip. At least I knew the dried sycamore leaves on the ground were okay for him.
But then I noticed stairs leading up to another patio area. And there were kids voices up there. Sammy loves kids. So up the step we went to see what was going on. And what did we find? A huge swimming pool with three little girls playing in it along with a very tame older golden retriever. Hrm... Sammy and a dog... No worries. We've been working on dogs. At least it was a big one. The goats tend to think they are just other weird looking/smelling goats.
But Sammy, like all goats, does not like water. So I wasn't sure about the whole pool thing. At least we were now in the shade. And the stone tiles would be easy to hose off if Sammy decided to relieve himself again. Then I noticed, past the pool, another set of steps going to a raised grassy area. Hrm.. shade and soft ground? So around the pool we went and up to the upper yard. This was obviously the dog area as I saw a little bit of evidence of doggy business. But only a little. Otherwise it was immaculate.
One of the guys was nice enough to fill up Sammy's water dish and bring me a margarita. I realized there was a gate to the pool area. Could it be closed? Why yes it could. So we closed the gate and then I was able to let Sammy off leash. He had access to the upper grassy area, the pool area, and... wait.. what's this? The pool house!
Finally, it was time for Sammy to go to work. So I packed him up and we headed up into the East Bay hills. Somewhere in the vicinity of Happy Valley Road and Bear Creek Road we pulled over and parked. Sammy was immediately relaxed. After all, we've been hiking in the East Bay Regional Park District for some time. So the oak and laurel trees are familiar to him. What he DIDN'T LIKE was the fact that we had to cross Bear Creek to get to the place they wanted to photograph him. It wasn't a small creek that he could hop across like the one in Tahoe. No. He had to go through this one. NOT a happy boy! But it was over relatively quickly and luckily he seemed to forget about it once he was hiking up the other side.
Once we were under a tree in the meadow, it was time to go to work. We had to struggle a little with the unicorn horn, but not because of Sammy. Oh no. He was totally professional and just stood by patiently until they could deal with the equipment malfunction. When the time came, I helped him to lay down in the proper position. He protested a little, but only as much as any other movie star would. After all, isn't a little protest expected from actors?
He was actually extremely patient and stayed in place for most of the two hour shoot. He needed to get up and stretch his legs a time or two. But I was always able to get him to lay back down and relax while the photographer was shooting. I think they were amazed at his patience. Me? I know what a good boy he is. For him it was a piece of cake. OK... a piece of apple, which is what the lead actress gave him as a treat when he was finished.
All in all, it was a good day. I honestly hope they got the shot they were looking for. I know I did.