Talk about bananas! We got to spend a day with the fantastic animal stars of Russell Madness, Crystal the Monkey (Night at the Museum 3) & debuting in their first movie Brightley the Dog. The pair’s costars David Milchard and wrestler John Hennigan were also on hand to celebrate the release of the wonderful family film. We were treated to a screening of the movie before meeting and greeting the small shining stars. Here are some highlights from the event!
Little Theater, Big Stars: The movie is non-stop cute. Russell Madness is the story of Russell(Brightly the Dog), a terrier who narrowly escapes being taken to the pound and runs away from the pet shop. He finds a friend in Hunk (Crystal the Monkey) while eating scraps in the alley of the Ferraro family’s old wrestling arena. The timing couldn’t be more perfect as the family had been trying to revive the place but had no luck. No wrestler would take the place seriously over the staged TV world of fighting. And due to an incredible twist of fate Russell ends up in the ring and with quick spunk beats his opponent. After the video of his fight goes viral, the Ferraros find a champion and new member of the family. Trained by Hunk, the family finds themselves in the wrestling circuit but have to face the challenges of entering a world where they could get taken advantage of by money grubbing promoters.
Tag Team: Crystal and Brightley are super entertaining. It’s so awesome to see their skills and how smart they are. Their scenes are all believable and you want to see more of them. Their training montages and just how they interact with the humans in the movie just steals the show. They are funny to an incredible degree.
Kids and animals are fun: It’s common actor knowledge that one should never work with kids or animals–they’re supposedly a nightmare. However, comedian David Milchard (Nate Ferraro) and pro-wrestler John Hennigan (The Hammer) disagree. During the Q&A the pair shared how much fun it was to work with the enchanting kids on set in addition to Crystal and Brightly. Hennigan even looks forward to coming back for more Russell Madness to get a rematch and maybe even a tag team pooch! Hey with how many Air Buddies movies there are, I’d say it’s a definite possibility.
Meet and Greet: If being astounded by how captivating the animals were in the movie was one thing, seeing them in the real life was ten times more awesome! Both Crystal and Brightley were some of the kindest and well behaved stars I’ve ever met. It was totally wicked cool to see little Brightley sit in her star chair and pose for pics and get their treats from a super nifty extendable ball on a fork. Crystal and her trainer were a hoot and super friendly! It was heartwarming to be befriended so quickly by a monkey and have her hop on your shoulders for pics. She even gave kisses!!!!!!
Russell Madness is out now!