What is it with Owen Wilson and dogs? Relatively fresh off the big hit that was Marley & Me, the star has signed on to provide his laidback drawl to the title star of Fox’s live-action/CG canine comedy, Marmaduke.
Based on a long-running comic strip that, we’ll be honest, passed Empire by during our formative years (we were Andy Capp fans), Marmaduke will tell the tale of a family who move to Orange County for a brand new life, only to find that their lovable Great Dane, Marmaduke, has a talent for attracting trouble, in the shape of a turf war between Mutts and Pedigrees.
The human cast – Lee Pace, William H. Macy and Judy Greer – and the rest of the impressive voice cast – Steve Coogan, Emma Stone, Christopher Mintz-Plasse, Damon and Marlon Wayans, George Lopez (a name that is giving us nasty ‘Nam-style flashbacks to Beverly Hills Chihuahua) and, erm, Fergie – have been on board for a while, but now Wilson has been confirmed as the tippermost toppermost. And we have to admit, if you want someone to voice a dog – a capricious, lazy, cheeky dog at that – then Wilson is inspired casting.
Tom Dey, who directed Wilson in the hugely enjoyable Shanghai Noon back in 2000, has been calling the shots on the movie, which has a June 2010 release date. So far, the live-action/CG animals genre hasn’t exactly covered itself in glory with the likes of Garfield and Alvin & The Chipmunks, so let’s hope that Marmaduke is, at least, half-decent. Believe us, that would be a step in the right direction…