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Dog Shy

Dog Shy(1926)

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teaser Dog Shy (1926)

In producer Hal Roach's Dog Shy (1926), directed by Leo McCarey, Charley Chase stars as a chap who, despite a life-long canine phobia, seems to ultimately benefit from the occasional terrors visited upon him by man's best friend - or is it man's best 'fiend'?

When we first meet Charley, he is being chased by a pursuing pup and is forced to duck into a phone booth, which a stuffy aristocrat (Stuart Holmes) has just left to get more change to continue a phone call with his reluctant fiance (Mildred June), who is being forced by her parents to marry him.

Because he happened to duck into the phone booth at just the right time, Charley agrees to help the unhappy girl concoct a plan to get her out of her wedding. His philanthropy is given a boost by an infatuation with just her voice. On the way to her house, Charley still doesn't have a plan. Just then, another dog shows him some teeth, and Charley jumps from panic into another fortuitous turn of events: he is mistakenly hired as a butler at the girl's house. This new gig allows him the opportunity to meet his new love, humiliate the pompous suitor (through a hilarious misunderstanding involving the name of the family dog "Duke" and the nobleman title of the suitor), and possibly even make friends for the first time with a four-legged Fido.

The family dog Duke was portrayed by a Hollywood pooch named "Buddy" who appeared in several Hal Roach comedies around this time, including Laurel & Hardy's From Soup to Nuts (1928), and several more with Charley Chase, including What Price Goofy? (1925) and Mighty Like a Moose (1926). Like Fatty Arbuckle's canine co-star, Luke the Dog, Buddy seems to have taken direction well, and his nimble acrobatic ability makes his scenes with Chase delightful. He's a genuine scene-stealer.

Producer: Hal Roach
Director: Leo McCarey
Screenplay: H.M. Walker
Cinematography: Floyd Jackman
Film Editing: Richard C. Currier
Cast: Charley Chase (Charley), Stuart Holmes (The Duke), Mildred June (The Girl), Josephine Crowell (The Girl's Mother), William Orlamond (The Girl's Father), Buddy the Dog (Duke).

by Scott McGee

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