Diamond Jubilation for Smurf: The Cutest of Palm Dogs for Sightseers Friends, rovers and countrymen, ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls, dogs and bitches, welcome to the Diamond Jubilee Palm Dog 2012. An event brimming with vigour and not a little jingoism and flag waving for the four legged – enough to bring a blush to the cheeks of any hound. The excitement is on no small measure due to the high canine quotient across all sections in Cannes, which has made the Palm Dog more than ever a Cannes conversation topic. But possibly the most encouraging sign that this sidebar event 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. Our Belle of the Ball has been 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 blockbusters! 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. My Modesty nearly deprived you all, of this photo of my meeting with the wonderful Uggie in London – a stop off on his world tour. (a priceless picture goes up on the screen of Toby meeting Uggie at his London hotel) He is the good-looking hairy one on the left. As with all great stars he likes to share with his fanbase and has sent me here in Cannes a very special message telling the story of his incredible year – in a musical format I give you – I bow wow my way. Please join the refrain…. Paul? (I Bow Wow My Way plays loud and Cannes voices sound clear) Now back to the business at hand, or should I say paw, and who knows – the new Uggie! While this is a year of celebrating sixty years of Her Majesty’s reign- a notable dog lover – the selection this year has been characterised by an alarming number of doggie death scenes – some in the most ghastly of circumstances. But, as ever, dogs gave their big screen all and be assured none were hurt in the filming of these, at times, rather gruesome scenes. After the dog death by arrow in the opening film it seemed that this year went on to become very RIP …Rover in Peace or in certain horrific moments rover in pieces… as were the more sensitive members of audiences – emotionally speaking. Amongst those up for consideration was a hound who went by the name of Fanny in the Vinterberg competition entry, The Hunt. A Danish Fanny up for the Palm Dog was certainly a first, especially for me. Fanny – a special name in the pooch pantheon in the UK notably as the faithful Fanny the wonder dog when comic Julian Clary was running the Joan Collins Fan Club. Alas, this officially selected Fanny met a rather gruesome end… a world away from the glitter and glamour of UK light entertainment. Before we get underway it is only fitting that we are upstanding for a special Palm Dog version of the National Anthem (The picture of the Corgi’s on the red carpet at BFI Southbank goes up on the screen The assembled throng the sings with
full throat…..) 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 Please be seated. And now, in this diamond jubilee year, at this decidedly eccentrically English event, I hand over to a gentleman blessed with quirk, wit and eccentricity in equal measure. Please marvel at this rigorous round up of the year’s star canine turns – which provided the judges with the task of making those tough decisions. Ladies and Gentleman Peter Bradshaw!