Off we all fly to Los Angeles for the world premiere of “Reggie the Egyptian Rescue Dog”. We are staying in a huge Beverly Hills mansion but all the interviews will be at the Ritz-Carlton Los Angeles. And security is heavy as Bob has received death threats from an Egyptian terrorist group “Bothers of Egypt” upset at the portrayal of Egyptian society and furious as the fact that I, as a lowly dog, pray to Allah which they call blasphemy. These are the type of small minded men that arrested and executed my original master Anwar for writing articles critical of the Egyptian government for betrayers of the Arab Spring. Hateful. Narrow minded and fanatical they are dangerous scum. Dogs are seen as playthings of the infidels. Most street dogs in Cairo have more morals and decency than these self-appointed guardians of the faith. In this world crazy politics and ideologies make me proud to be a dog but then again there are so many kind humans that helped me Egypt I must not forget that and Bob made that very clear when helping to write the screenplay.
In fact Bob and Fay have had to sell their house and move to the Bridle Path area in Toronto. Our new house is massive and well fortified and will be manned by private security. We have a famous musician on our new street called Drake who I have heard much about in the BBC show “Entertainment” and another older musician called Gordon Lightfoot who I know nothing about other than he his loved by many Canadian Boomers.
Bob, Fay, Dillie the Westie and I attend the interviews along with the crew that worked on the film and the actors that are doing the voice overs. Cameras are popping and questions galore? Then we move to a small suite for interviews with leading networks and publications. I recognize the anchor from BBC America News and romp up to her and give a friendly bark and she pats me. Reggie the former street dog, on the head and gives me a little hug! Then that news anchor from ABC news I see after the BBC news every night and he also gives my head a firm ruffle! Dillie has a big smile on his face like when he goes off-leash. He gets lots of comments how cute and sweet he is and boy he is all groomed and looks like the sharpest and coolest Westie.
The interviewers ask Bob if he has some fear about his safety after the death threats from the Brothers of Egypt. He replies that he is but no one could have foreseen the idiocy of such a group. Bob says the film is really meant for children but it has a deeper meaning of the plight of street dogs of Egypt and the special people there and in Canada that are doing all they can to stop the poisoning and killing of so many dogs in governmentally encouraged culls. Bob says he means no disrespect to Egyptians and Islam by his story but that it has changed his life and the life of me, Fay and Dillie the Westie. So it has been a very long day and dinner is brought to us at our temporary home. We sit and eat by the television and there is yet another story of a black person being gunned down by a white policeman. There is not only madness on the streets of Cairo but on the streets of the United States!
Bob takes Dillie and I for a walk on the grounds of the gated mansion and we are so tired we all head back to bed as tomorrow night is the world premiere of “Reggie the Egyptian Rescue Dog”!
Morning comes strangely to both dogs and humans who are bound by circadian rhythms. We are up at 7 a.m. in Toronto as Dillie the Westie barks to go out and pee and tired Bob lumbers down to take my ageing pal out and me too to keep Dillie company. But 7 a.m. in Toronto time is 4 a.m. here in Los Angeles or “LA” as they call it. Bladders and brains are all mixed up! But we do our business and every human and dog sleeps until 10 a.m. and we are wide awake.
Bob and Fay head downstairs and give us dogs a hug and kind words. And Carmela an older Mexican lady has prepared Mexican homemade dog food for Dillie and I with pork and black beans and it is like nothing we have eaten before. We wag our tails and ask for more with a gentle bark and Carmela obliges. OMG so good and different. The black beans give us some gas but not the runs….thank goodness. Bob and Fay have Huevos Rancheros and tortillas and a big pot of coffee, Dillie and I love the smell of coffee but we only have it when our cleaning lady in Toronto, Paula, comes every second Wednesday. Bob and Fay are green tea drinkers. Dillie bit Paula early on and was banished to the crate every time she comes. But I am good with Paula. These West Highland Terriers can be so possessive and territorial. I am not making any judgement on my brother Dillie a I love him and respect his territoriality.
We spend the morning by the pool with Bob throwing us balls until we are panting and too tired to continue. At 2 p.m. Carmela prepares a Mexican feast of epic proportions. And we get a special homemade Mexican dogfood feast with Pork and Chicken without any beans. Bob and Fay have a drink called Marguerites.
At 4 p.m. we get ready to go to the premiere. As dogs running and playing we are smelling very doggy and receive a quick bath by “dog trainers”. We are primed and ready to go and we head off to a big theatre in LA. There is a red carpet and for security reasons we appear for 15 minutes and go back to the “green Room” to get ready for the film.
We are backstage and ready to go. We meet many big Hollywood stars. Tom Hanks and Rita Wilson pick me up and as Rita and Tom are Greek Orthodox like Fay they say come visit us in Greece on our island. Our jet is at our disposal.
There are famous people all over. The film runs and there is quiet then standing ovations for half an hour. Dillie and I are picked up and the crowd goes wild.
Indications are as we read the critic’s reviews in the L.A. papers next morning this is the Disney hit of the century.
The cast party was a dream for anyone in the Hollywood National Enquirer sphere. We should mention who played our characters in this animated production;
Reggie: Rick Mercer
Karim: Riz Ahmed
Bob: Rylan Gosling
Fay: Jennifer Aniston
Dillie the Westie: Peter Mansbridge
Anwar: Eduardo San Juan Breña
Narrator: Mahershala Ali
The party finished at 4 a.m. and on the way home in the limo Bob receives a call from the CEO of Disney that Reggie is charting as a monstrous hit. I am glad for this. But I can digest what this means. As for immediate realities Dillie and I are exhausted and have no energy for a walk but to be put outside for a long pee and bed is all we want!