While the four-legged stars of “Beverly Hills Chihuahua 2” are the movie’s main draw, there are also a few humans characters that make their mark (not like that!) in this family-friendly sequel.
One of those actors is Marcus Coloma, who plays Sam, the owner of the movie’s lead dog Papi (voiced by George Lopez), who needs help when he faces foreclosure. Cue the characters from the original 2008 film and a litter of new puppies who come to save the day.
“Beverly Hills Chihuahua 2,” which was recently released on DVD and Blu-ray, is Coloma’s second feature film. His first was 2006’s “Material Girls” starring Hilary and Haylie Duff. Along with his work as an actor, Coloma released his first album, On the Bright Side, in 2009. It is currently available on iTunes.
During an interview with me, Coloma, 32, who is half Italian and half Hawaiian, talked about working with his furry co-stars and what he thinks about people who dress up their pets.
What was the most challenging part about working on a set where a majority of your co-stars are dogs?
(Laughs) It’s crazy because with most dogs you can wrestle around and play with them. But the dogs on set were there to do a job. They are very smart and very affectionate, but they are on a different mode. There has to be a professional attitude toward the animals during the shoot because otherwise they might get hyped up.
They’re full-bred movie stars!
Those dogs are the stars of the movie, yes. It’s kind of like working with the Brad Pitt of the animal world. It’s funny.
So, do they get to go to craft services with you and get their own trailer?
(Laughs) They’re treated very well. They definitely get their fill of treats. Every time they pull off one of their amazing feats, they would get a treat. But they work for it. These dogs are so smart and do some really impressive things.
Do you have a pet at home?
Not at this stage of my life. Right now it’s a little too inconsistent for a dog. Sometimes I’m around for 24 hours, but then I have to get up and go out of town. I hate dropping dogs off at the kennel. Maybe sometime down the road I’ll get a dog.
What about as a kid?
I had a Labrador and two Corgis. At one point, the Lab and one of the Corgis got pregnant so we had a ton of animals running around. We had some chickens and a rabbit and some birds, too. It was a lot of fun. It was like a zoo at my place.
Although Chihuahuas are featured prominently in the movie, there are a few different breeds. Was there a specific one you liked the most?
I really liked my dog in the movie, Papi. He’s a Chihuahua, but he’s also a mutt. I like mutts being that I’m a mutt myself. I really dug the German Shepherd, too. They are such a proud, strong dog, but also very warm. I love those dogs that look kind of tough, but are actually sweethearts.
What’s your opinion on people who put clothes on their dogs?
(Laughs) You know, I think it’s funny. I know some people that really go all out with their dogs and dress them up or take them to the doggie spa. For some people, their dogs are like their kids. They love their dogs more than anything. I get it. Dogs are man’s best friend. I think there are little souls in them. I think it’s nice that people have that kind of relationship with their dogs.
You’re working in both the TV and film industries right now. Where does your music career land in terms of priority?
Music is something I love more than anything, but right now it’s in the background for me. Acting is really my career. I really don’t fully understand the music scene just yet, especially living in Los Angeles. Right now it’s on the backburner, but I’ll probably put out a couple more albums. I’m not pushing as hard as I think you have to to actually be successful in it.