Art of Racing: Milo Ventimiglia on his canine costar

L-R: “Enzo” and Milo Ventimiglia in Twentieth Century Fox’s, THE ART OF RACING IN THE RAIN
L-R: “Enzo” and Milo Ventimiglia in Twentieth Century Fox’s, THE ART OF RACING IN THE RAIN /

The Art of Racing in the Rain star Milo Ventimiglia shares how he fell in love with his furry costar Parker and would’ve gladly given him a home if he didn’t have one already.

This is Us star Milo Ventimiglia is set to star as dog-loving sports car racer Denny Swift in the upcoming film The Art of Racing in the RainOf course, like any actor, Ventimiglia was able to form bonds and relationships with the people he worked with on the film. However, it’s clear that no bond was stronger that the one he shared with his co-star Parker.

Parker plays the character Enzo (voiced by Kevin Costner), a Golden Retriever who is Denny’s best friend and companion in the film. Of course, there were many dogs that were involved in the film, as it was necessary to be able to cover a great course of Enzo’s life. An article from Entertainment Weekly shares that Ventimiglia bonded with all of the pups off-camera to be able to connect and work with them.

The same article features an interview with Ventimiglia sharing how much he loved Parker:

"If Parker didn’t have a home, I would’ve brought him home with me. I’d made a new friend and a close friend, and someone I wanted to be around until the end. Unfortunately, though, Parker did have a home, he had a mom and dad, so it was like, “Oh okay, great, Milo can’t just adopt you, got it.”"

Honestly, I don’t blame him for that! I’m sure after spending so much time together, sharing energy, and acting in emotional scenes together that the pair did form a very special and unique bond. The Entertainment Weekly article even shares that the two were so connected to each other that Parker’s trainer on set noticed him getting “stressed” by Ventimiglia’s acting.

Entertainment Weekly brought up the acting quip to “never act opposite dogs or children” and asks Ventimiglia why he decided to take the challenge of doing both in the film. He shared that:

"It’s so deeply human, and the angle where you have a dog who happens to be an elevated soul and is watching his owner go through the trials of life, it felt like a unique story. It had magic without it feeling like it was trying to push the magic."

I think this is ultimately a testament to the kind of performance we can expect from Milo Ventimiglia and Parker in the film. Acting with dogs requires a vastly different approach to working with other people and from the sounds of it, I think Ventimiglia has it down. Once again, who wouldn’t want to take their furry friend home with them after working for so long together and acting as an inseparable pair?

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For more on The Art of Racing in the Rain, see our review of Garth Stein’s novel, lead actress Amanda Seyfried‘s comments about the cast dynamics, and Ventimiglia’s warning about what to expect,

The Art of Racing in the Rain is in theaters across the US starting Friday, August 9.