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Dogs Get Their Day in the Sun at Cannes

Annual Palm Dog award recognizes the best canine performance of this year’s films.

Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie may be the big stars at this year’s Cannes Film Festival, but film critic Charles Gant says no one captivates an audience like a dog.

“Was Frank the singing Pug an important plot element in ‘Men in Black II?’ No. But was he the best thing about the movie? Oh, yes,” Gant told The Guardian.

Gant and several other high-profile film critics are set to judge this year’s Palm Dog, an annual award given during the Cannes Film Festival for the best on-screen performance by a dog.

British TV personality Toby Rose, who founded the award eight years ago, is happy to see dogs get their day in the sun. “Dogs are crucial to films and yet they are totally overlooked,” he says.

This year’s contenders for the top prize include the dog of Michelle Williams’ character in “Wendy and Lucy,” whose departure for the animal shelter contributes to Williams’ emotional breakdown, and a dog who licks Julianne Moore in the opening sequence of “Blindness,” a film about a post-apocalyptic world in which people suffer a mass loss of sight.

The Palm Dog winner will be announced on Friday. To learn more about the awards, visit www.palmdog.com

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