Dobermann kennel Irinland

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"Night Watch"
(Tatiana Kulachenko)

When we were called and asked to provide ten Dobermans for participation in filming of "Nochnoy Dozor" (Night Watch) mystic thriller, we immediately got interested in those tasks, which would be set before the dobermans in the action. We were told that a group of well-trained IPO-working dogs would be needed. In the film dobermans had to personify Satanic Hosts, but together with that they had to be perfectly obedient, excellently IPO-trained with much drive to work. A doberman had been invited before us and it was already taken in a few scenes, but the film crew wasn't satisfied with working qualities of that dog, so they decided to address us, "Irinland" kennel, for we had already had experience in filming large packs of dogs.

In this connection the filming of the clip "Street Hounds" with Detzel can be remembered, where according to scenario the back-up person was supposed to hold eight dobermans on leash together. But having communicated with the dogs, Kirill (Detzel) realized that they all were peaceful and well-disposed to people, so he refused help from the back-up man and took the leash himself. He perfectly managed to hold the whole pack of adult male and female dobs. Filming of the clip was being done outdoors late at night; according to the screen-play writer's idea the dogs were running up and down the street, males and females mixed together, unleashed and without muzzles. And not a single dog had any wish to kick up a row with another one.

In small numbers dobermans starred in TV films based on novels "Russian Amazons-2" written by Darya Dontsova, also in the following movies - "Looking downwards", "The Formula", "Martian Chronicles" and others.

But let's get back to "Nochnoy Dozor". Having read the scenario, frankly speaking, I began to have doubts if it had the sense to participate in the project at all; at the first glance the dobermans' role was rather ominous - dogs had to bark madly, attack the actor and fiercely tear his clothes. And we, fans and admirers of our favourite breed - the Doberman - adore our dogs and want them to be perceived by other people as the Powers of Light and not the Powers of Darkness; as the Heavenly Hosts and not the Satanic Hosts.

But later they convinced me that it had been just the first impression, the project itself was very interesting, and, well, the actors sometimes have to play negative roles, which does not automatically make them bad persons. All in all, we agreed.

Only sociable, not-conflict, and excellent IPO-working dogs were picked for filming, for they had to work unleashed and without muzzles in immediate proximity from the filming crew, therefore they had to be obedient to voice commands given from a distance. Ten dogs from "Irinland" kennel took part in filming, and here we would like to name them all and say big thanks to the dogs' owners for their cooperation and patience:

Irinland Jozefina Joze IPO-1, TAN 20/20; Irinland Patricia Perla IPO-3, SchH-2; Irinland Kriss Kaizer IPO-1; Irinland Paola Pierluka IPO-1, SchH-1; Irinland Kamila Kara IPO-1; Irinland Stealth Skyhawk IPO-1; Irinland Ukas Ulm IPO-1; Irinland Harrier Hurricane IPO-1; Irinland Duc Dufer IPO-3, SchH-1; Irinland Sheldon Shick IPO-1; Irinland Paloma Pilar IPO-1.

The filming lasted a few days; all our four-footed actors came to Mosfilm at the appointed time, where the scenery was set in one of the pavilions. Our working days began like this: in the kennel we got up at 5am, prepared dogs, gear and cages; then a car from Mosfilm picked us up at 6am and we reached the destination at about 7:30am. It wasn't easy to get inside; a pass was required there. Having filled in all forms we drove in and unpacked in the indicated pavilion. Then the make-up crew arrived and transformed our brown-and-tan and black-and-tan dobermans into absolutely black dogs, eliminating their tan. Brown Paola and Kamila became black. They used black-color spray on the dogs, spreading it evenly from nose to tail, though it didn't irritate skin and was easily washed off afterwards. Our dogs behaved themselves adequately and with no fuss went through the whole procedure intended to make Satanic Hounds out of them.

The air was stuffy in the pavilions and terribly hot outside, so the dogs were literally melting. We were filmed in the pitch-dark, in the set made as a half-ruined roof of the building. The dogs' leaders were bound to wear everything black in order not to be visible, the same referred to dogs' gear.

On the first day, when we came to the film set and fixed the dogs' crates, we looked at the floor and were really shocked - according to the scenario it had to be a roof of a high building, and the roof (that is, the floor) was completely covered with debris of broken glass, bottles, protruding chunks of armature, nails, wires and screws. So the first day began with cleaning the place, because the dogs could be injured in such a mess.

Konstantin Khabenskiy - a very pleasant person, who is well disposed both to people and to dogs, played the main role in the film. He was quick in winning dogs' trust and understanding, and he performed many complex tricks without back-up, not showing even slightest signs of fear or timidity in front of the dogs, which had to bark, attack and bite him according to the scenario. We trained our dobs for acting together with the dog trainer and Khabenskiy's back-up Andrey Manin, many times working on each episode, and it was an extremely difficult task because in this case the dog must have very stable psychics - you can't explain to the dog that it's just another try and it's possible to take it easy. Every time the dog works it works for real, at the top of its capability.

The scene, where Khabenskiy was lying on the roof defending himself against the dogs with the "magic" ray of light, was a classic IPO task - detaining by barking, i.e. having received the owner's command the dog must indicate the helperlocation by barking only, without biting. Jozefina Joze and Patricia Perla were taken in this episode. Irinland Jozefina Joze played the central dog's role, which exactly consisted of seizing Khabenskiy, who was on the roof of the elevator. She had to fix a tight grip on his leg, pull him down to the floor and fiercely tear his clothes. Jozefina, being already not a young dog (5 y.o.), perfectly fulfilled her task in several takes. And what's more, in the fighting episodes on the roof the dog made a tight grip of the arm of the helper's jacket, then this jacket was actually taken off the helper and put on Khabenskiy, and all that was done with THE DOG GRIPPING THE JACKET ARM! It was a hard task for the dog, and Jozefina managed it with honor. Later the filming crew of the famous TV cast "Skaner" came to our kennel to film Jozefina in this trick especially for the channel viewers.

The most difficult part of staging scenes with Dobermans was that, according to the producer's idea, the pack of dogs, shoulder to shoulder, had to attack the actor and fiercely bark at him. Dogs' attention should be concentrated on the man and shouldnbe shifted towards each other. Everyone who trains dogs understands how difficult it is to reach this goal, when the pack of adult male and female dogs close together are provoked to bark and to bite. And this is done not in a large field, where one dog is against one helper, but in a narrow space of the filming ground, where 6-8 dogs are around the man lying on the floor. Our dogs brilliantly carried out the task and deserved much praise.

A hard task had been set for the group of our three dogs - Jozefina Joze, Kriss Kaizer and Patricia Perla; simultaneously they had to grip the lying actor by the leg and arms and shake him violently. A spectacle not for over-sensitive minds! And the dogs did it perfectly. There was another scene, where six dogs - Kriss Kaizer, Stealth Skyhawk, Harrier Hurricane, Ukas Ulm, Patricia Perla and Paola Pierluka, standing in complete darkness on the table 1,5m high had to bark fiercely before the camera, which was hidden in the hole under the table; and doing so they shouldn't show aggression towards each other. In this episode our famous actor Irinland Kriss Kaizer, already taken in a few films, was shown close-up. Patricia Perla and Paola Pierluka were asked to bark in order to record the sound for this scene. To our regret there is only a short episode with dogs in the film, many interesting scenes were excluded. We hope they will be shown in the TV version.

The filming schedule was very tight, sometimes from 8 in the morning till 8 in the evening. During breaks the dogs were either resting in their cages or just walking about the pavilion, for nobody was afraid of them there. Once, when we were absorbed in watching the takes, two girls, Patricia and Paola, got together and headed to the next pavilion where the buffet was situated. We found them there begging from the kind buffet-lady for cookies and other tidbits, and at our arrival they had already been considerably refilled.

Also during the breaks we investigated other pavilions where filming was going on; there were many people and famous actors moving around there. The dogs weren't embarrassed by commotion, because they are show dogs and are used to fussy crowds of people. In the neighbor pavilion they were filming scenes of the film "Moskovskaya Saga"(Moscow Saga) - scenes set as the field hospital with lots of bandaged actors. While the dobermans were resting Ekaterina Petrakova, who is a professional ambulance doctor, started to help the actors to properly bandage their "wounds". All in all, everything was great and very interesting to us - usually we don't show up at Mosfilm every day, the atmosphere was friendly, everybody enjoyed being there and the dogs were at their best in work.

And not long time ago we met Kostya Khabenskiy at MTV Music Awards 2004 in the Kremlin, where he was leading the procedure, and Irinland Duc Dufer participated in the clip with Glukoza. Duc's visit to the Kremlin is a separate story. Dogs are not allowed to go into the Kremlin, so we had to do a huge amount of paper work, fill in lots of forms, etc. in order to get a permission to enter the Kremlin with the dog. There was a strict requirement for the dog to wear a muzzle and a prong collar all the time while being in the Kremlin and in the Concert Hall. We didn't have the right to take the muzzle off, not for a single moment, and naturally it much disappointed our sociable Duc. But in compensation Duc received lots of attention and caress from so many stars, and his hair still keeps the touch of so many stars' hands!

Konstantin cordially talked with us, we remembered all moments of filming. He also felt sorry that many filmed scenes weren't included in the film. He highly evaluated the work of our dogs.

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