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Halo-Backed Movie Opens Film Fest, Promotes Animal Rescue

Michelle Maskaly//May 2, 2014//

Halo-Backed Movie Opens Film Fest, Promotes Animal Rescue

Michelle Maskaly //May 2, 2014//

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Halo, Purely for Pets has teamed up with 2012 America’s Got Talent winners, the Olate Dogs, to create a 6-minute film, “La Sauvetage” (The Rescue), directed by Peter McEvilley, of “The House Bunny,” “Last Vegas” and “Alias” fame, and starring the Olate Dogs.

The film opened the Sonoma Film Festival on April 2, but the media and other invited guests were treated to a special screening during the Global Pet Expo.

David Yaskulka, Halo’s vice president of marketing communications, said McEvilley saw a bumper sticker that read, “Who rescued who?” and was inspired by its sweet, yet deeply meaningful question.

“He felt this ‘reversed’ perspective on animal rescue, recognizing that at its core, rescue is a two-way street, captured the growing sentiment of a generation,” Yaskulka said. “A storyline was born in his extraordinarily creative mind. So he sought a partner that shared the film’s perspective to greenlight the film and bring it to life. He found Halo’s CEO, Steve Marton, who was deeply impressed, and got personally involved in the film’s creation.”

The movie, because of its subject matter, was a perfect fit for the company.

“Everything Halo does is purely for pets and the people who love them,” Yaskulka said.  “The Halo family, including our associates, retailers and customers, care deeply about their pets, and want to feed them only the best ingredients. But we care just as deeply about the pets we couldn’t adopt. ‘Le Sauvetage’ is a brilliant piece that helps Halo spread the word about rescue.”

The Olate Dogs also perfectly fit into the mission of the movie because many of them are rescue animals.

In fact, family patriarch, Richard Olate, developed his act on the streets of his native Chile when he was a poor boy of just 12. He began rescuing stray dogs from the street and training them to be part of his amateur show. He has worked hard for years to realize his dream of becoming a professional dog act.

In 2012, the Olate Dogs shot to stardom when they won the America’s Got Talent grand prize. Today, Richard and his son, Nicolas, and wife, Rebecca, continue to save dogs from shelters and train them to become part of their professional troupe.

The movie is in French with English subtitles.

“I admit I wondered about that for a while, but now I couldn’t see it any other way for a largely English-speaking audience,” Yaskulka said. “After all, this is a glimpse into the perspective of someone whose language we don’t speak.”

Yaskulka explained the company hoped the movie helps other organizations, and retailers, raise awareness about rescue animals.

“We hope that shelters and other animal welfare organizations find ‘Le Sauvetage’ useful to show at their events and fundraisers, and we especially hope our retail partners will find opportunities to use the film to promote rescue in their communities,” he said.