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Movies

Movie Animals Projects

Some of the Films we particularly enjoyed working on:

Animal Farm - Spice   Animal Farm - TNT/Hallmark’s award winning film. In Nov 98 the canine star ‘Jessie’ is played by Mary’s collie ‘Spice’. The film features nine other Fircroft dogs. This was a fascinating and challenging film to work on – with over 150 creatures – fur and feather all working together. - "To Spice, Rita and Mary – Brilliant – one more please!" John Stephenson, Director.  

"It was a great pleasure to work with you both. I hope we do it again, all my love" Mike Brewster, Director of Photography.

"To Rita, Mary & Spice with thanks and gratitude" Greg Smith, Producer - Animal Farm Dublin 1998.

  Mystics – Comedy with Dave Kelly & Milo O’Shea – featuring Sonny, our Jack Russell.

Quote from John Schultz, Director of The Honeymooners   Honeymooners – Paramount 2004 We adopted four greyhounds to play the role of Iggy, the dog. Shot mainly on location in Ireland, we completed the shoot with two of our Iggies in New York.

R.h.s. Quote from John Schultz, Director of The Honeymooners.

  Far & Away - Imagine Films (Universal) various dogs and birds. Tom Cruise & Nicole Kidman. Tom was especially taken with our cat Smithy.

  Hear my Song - Mirimax Our Wolfhound Celtie played the role of companion to Irish singer Joseph Locke - played by Ned Beatty, while Misty the whippet featured with Aidan Dunbar. Also starring James Nesbitt whom we later worked with in ‘Everlasting Piece’.

  Moondance – Littlebird Prods. Our greyhound Girlie played the lead greyhound Ishka. The story of two young boys who grew up pretty wild, left to their own devices in the countryside. Their passion - their greyhound Ishka. – Starring Marianne Faithful, Rhuairi Conroy & Brendan Grace.

Quote - The Snapper & the Van  The Snapper – Beacon Pictures ‘Famine’ the family’s Jack Russell was a great favourite of the cast and crew. This was the first of many times to work with Colm Meaney - "To famine our best dog" -Colm Meaney. "woof, woof" -Roddy Doyle. "Best wishes" -Enna MacLiam. "Love and best wishes" -Tina Kellegher. "All the best" -Ruth McCabe. Starring Colm Meaney, Ruth McCabe, Tina Kelleher and Eanna McLiam.

  Brave Heart – Dreamworks This called for a pack of bloodhounds, kindly loaned to us by the Holestone Farmers, Co. Antrim, pioneers of hunting without foxhounds and without a fox as prey. We have some hilarious home video footage of us training with these dogs – directed by Mel Gibson.

  Saving Private Ryan - We spent three weeks on location teaching German shepherd dog Gilla to ignore the mayhem of the scenes of the landing of the troops. She became rock steady regardless of massive explosions, the ground shook for miles, bodies flying, lots of yelling and screaming. She became quite complacent about the carnage, learning to move on cue along the beach from massive iron hedgehog to hedgehog, learning when to bark and when to be silent. Great dog! – starring Tom Hanks and directed by Steven Spielberg.

  Frankie Starlight - Lovely movie and our first time to work with Gabriel Byrne.

  This is my father - Filmline Int. and Hummingbird Communications. Murphy, border collie and farm birds. Great opportunity to work with the three Quinn Brothers and James Caan.

Gabriel Byrne - Last of the High Kings   The Last of the High Kings - Parallel Films Murphy, border collie and Leto border collie – Murphy was in his element as the family dog. With Gabriel Byrne, Catherine O’Hara from ‘Home Alone’, Jared Leto, Colm Meaney, Stephen Rea, Christina Ricci. – "to Murphy, my old friend" from Gabriel, Last of the High Kings, Howth 1996.

  Trojan Eddie – lots of dogs, hens, geese and farm animals. This one starred Richard Harris, Brendan Gleeson & Stephen Rea.

  I Went Down - working with cats on this one and first time to work with Brendan Gleeson.

  Amongst women – Murphy, border collie - working with Tony Doyle - a real gentleman to work with. We had done a lot with him on BallyK before his untimely death.

  Lassie – twelve of our own trained dogs help Lassie to escape from the pound. 2005

Milo O'Shea - The Matchmaker Quote   The Matchmaker - Miramax. Murphy again – fun movie with Milo O’Shea as the wily matchmaker. "To Murphy, Rita & Mary sincerely and with love" - Milo.

  Intermission – Brown Sauce Prods 2000 - lovely to work again with Colm Meaney and Colin Farrell whom we had previously worked with on BallyK .

View our Current Team.

Complete Movie Works

Lassie – Fircroft dogs help Lassie escape from the pound
Honeymooners – Four greyhounds playing the role of Iggy. We completed the shooting Honeymooners in New York with two of our Iggies. Paramount movie – 2005
Boy Eats Girl – Samantha Mumba – snake. Sitric Film Productions Ltd. - 2004
Tara Road – Sonny, Tosser and frog – Dalkey Film Productions - 2004
Intermission – Brown Sauce Prods 2000 - lovely to work again with Colm Meeney and Colin Farrell whom we had previously worked with on BallyK .
Mystics – comedy with Dave Kelly & Milo O’Shea – Sonny, Jack Russell.
Animal Farm - We trained nine dogs for this movie, including our rescue Lurcher, Jack Russell, Rottie and crossbreed. The canine heroine Jessie, is played by our collie Spice, the villain is played by Astro, the rottie. TNT/Hallmark 1998
Durango - lovely to work again with Brenda Fricker, Patrick Bergin & Matt Keeslar Hallmark 1998
Everlasting Piece – with Anna Friel & Billy Connolly - Dreamworks.
Fools of Fortune – with Julie Christie, Mary Elizabeth Mastroantonia, Tom Hickey, Anita Reeves & Rosaleen Lenihan and an assortment of our dogs.
Far & Away - Tom Cruise & Nicole Kidman – birds and dogs Imagine Films (Universal)
Hear my Song - Ned Beatty. Adrian Dunbar with Celtie our Wolfhound, Misty the whippet and Dally, the dalmation. The story of Irish singer Joe Locke - Mirimax
Moondance – with Marianne Faithful. A story of two young boys who grew up left to their own devices in the countryside. Their passion - their greyhound Ishka. - Littlebird
The Snapper – ‘Famine’ the dog. First of many times to work with Colm Meaney - Beacon Pictures
The Van – a selection of our deogs. Another Roddy Doyle story with Colm Meeney Fox Pictures
Under the Hawthorn Tree – story of the famine - Young Irish Film Makers
December Bride - with Donal McCann, Saskia Reeves, Ciaran Hinds. Zaffle –collie Littlebird
Brave Heart – pack of bloodhounds, scene subsequently dropped at last minute. . Director Mel Gibson. We have some hilarious home video of these dogs in training for the scene. Dreamworks
Saving Private Ryan - Tom Hanks – Spielberg Movie - the same thing happened. However, our prep work with the dog on the beach during filming of the landing of the troups was noticed and as a result of that movie we were head hunted by other American Productions later on.
St. Ives – Anna Friel - two mastiffs - we had fun on this one with the hens and the sound man.
I love Suzy - Family BBC Prod. - German Shepherd, various dogs & small animals.
Sweety Barrett – Brendan Gleeson - boa constrictor, sheep, cat. Temple films (Clarence Pics)
The Mammy - Brendan Carroll –directed by Angelica Huston
Frankie Starlight - shit zhu dog and puppy - first time to work with Gabriel Byrne
Though the Sky falls - The Veronica Guerin Story –German shepherd
This is my father - Murphy, border collie and farm birds. Great opportunity to work with the three Quinn Brothers and James Caan . Filmline Int. and Hummingbird Communications.
I Went Down - with Brendan Gleeson. We had cats on this one.
Amongst women – Murphy, border collie - working with Tony Doyle - a real gentleman to work with. We had worked a lot with him on BallyK before his untimely death.
Some mother’s son – with Helen Mirren – our dogs as army and sniffer dogs
Trogan Eddie – assorted dogs, poultry and farm animals. This one starred Richard Harris, Brendan Gleeson & Stephen Rea.
The Last of the High Kings - Murphy, border collie and Leto border collie - A lovely movie to do - Gabriel Byrne again, Catherine O’Hara from Home Alone & Jared Leto. Colm Meaney, Stephen Rea, Christina Ricci. Parallel Films
The matchmaker - with Milo O’Shea – Murphy Greta Satchi. our Border collie - Miramax
Love & Rage - with Greta Satchi - our Wolfhound, rats and cattle - ( Cathal Black - Black Films)
Widows Peak - cat Mia Farrow, Joan Plowright Rank Films & Fine Line features.
The Aristocrats - Assorted dog
The American - with Brenda Fricker - 2 great danes and assorted dogs.
David Copperfield - assorted dogs - head hunted again for this one. Hallmark
The Beckett Film project – cat and cage bird.
Not Afraid, Not Afraid - cats
Rebel Heart (hens) May 2000
Widow’s son - (Murphy, border collie and poultry) May 2000
Magnificent Ambersoms – St. Bernard and Borzoi. Sept 2000
Hill 16 Films – Boy, our wolfhound
White - border collie Tokaji
Asylum – 2 dogs, rabbits 2003
The Enchantment – 5 wolfhounds, owl, hawk & ferrets. Concorde Anois, 2001Roger Corman L.A.
Turning Green – rottie and jack Russell.
Dead Bodies – Sonny J.Russell – directed by Robert Quinn
Asylum – dog - Seven Arts Pictures Ltd. 2003
Six Shooters - cow and rabbit Fantastic Films

TO BE UPDATED TO AND INCL 2017

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© Fircroft Kennels & Training Centre, 2017,
Rathangan,
Co Kildare, Ireland