SIghtseers director Ben Wheatley with Palm Dog organiser Toby Rose and Smurf in his Trophy Palm Dog collar

Forget the Chelsea Battle Bus, Covent Garden was a-buzz as the team from British comedy horror picture – Sightseers headed up by its director Ben Wheatley – cheered the presentation of the Diamond Jubilee Palm Dog collar to this year’s winner, Smurf. The plucky Parsons terrier did a dog lap of honour around Seven Dials in a Union Jack festooned rickshaw. At his side was co-star Steve Oram and Karen from Animal Ambassadors – a doggie RADA. The crowd cheered and applauded. Smurf was so thrilled he did handstands – or should that be pawstands – to the delight of onlookers.
It was the crowning glory of a vintage Palm Dog, which this year displayed not a little jingoism and flag waving for the four legged – enough to bring a blush to the cheeks of any hound.

The audience at this year’s awards sang a special Diamond Dog Jubilee National Anthem
Bow Wow our gracious Queen
Long Live Our Noble Queen
Dog Save the Queen
Send her victorious
Happy and Corgious
Long to reign over us
Dog Save our Queen
The excitement was in on no small measure thanks to the high canine quotient across all sections at Cannes 2012. . It was from this throng of canine contenders that Smurf emerged victorious for his star turn as Banjo. But this performance was not gonged by a jury blinded by patriotism. No Smurf gave a standout performance. Said Times Chief Film Critic Kate Muir and Palm Dog Jury Member. « Smurf’s enthusiatic performance keeps Sightseers on the topping point of comedy rather than horror. His commitment to his craft – particularly in a tricky (nude) scene – is exceptional »
Not to be forgotten was Smurf’s co-star in the film Gad who played an ill fated pooch called Poppy which met a grisly end impalled on knitting needles. But I was Smurf who went off with his co-stars Steve Oram and Alice Lowe on a Yorkshire road trip which descended into a serial killer rampage. At the ceremony in Cannes on Friday May 25 the audience was treated to a darkly comical scene in which a civic demand for pooper scooping is met with leathal force. Smurf was in no way party to the gruesome dispatch of a gentleman walker who complained of dog fouling. As Kate Muir observed his joie de vivre kept the tone light in what would otherwise seen events turning Evil Dead.

A Rickshaw Festooned with flags took Smurf on lap dog of honour with co-star Steve Oram
Possibly the most encouraging sign that Cannes sidebar event the Palm Dog thrives has been the cavalcade of Palm Dog Pin Ups and Poster Boys who have brandished the special edition marvel that is the Palm Bone in a stunning red and Union Jack Livery. Among them, Terry Gilliam in the company of Jeremy Irons, and Ewan McGregor. Belle of the Ball Palm Dog Pin up of 2012 sporting the Diamond Jubilee Palm Dog collar – Miss Bonnie Wright better known as Ginny Weasley from the Harry Potter._The wonderful trophy collars this year have been created by Creature Clothes from Suffolk in very patriotic East Anglia where is to be found the Queen’s country seat, Sandringham. A favoured stamping ground of her majesty’s corgis so I am told!_Also going to our jubilee year winners will be smart medals from Shoreditch fashion house Tatty Divine._
This year we build on the success of the biggest ever Palm Dog last year with the Oscar winning success of The Artist – which reflected so well on our choice of Uggie. The Palm Dog trophy collar went on- with Uggie – to grace the TV studios of Ellen Degeneres, NBC Today show, he landed on the BBC Breakfast couch, Graham Norton’s soft furnishings and zapped back across the Atlantic to hit the Golden Globes red carpet.
And proudly sporting his bandana Creature Clothes Diamond Jubilee Palm Dog Trophy collar it looks like Smurf if destined for the big time. As Screen International declared in its headline « Move over Uggie, Smurf’s Top dog now »