Jennifer Aniston and Owen Wilson break all the rules about working with animals and children for their new movie, Marley & Me. 22 dogs play the title role of Marley and the film is based on the best-selling book of the same name. It's about the real life worst dog ever, Marley, which John Grogan (played by Owen Wilson) bought his wife to put her off wanting kids for a while.
Jennifer Aniston and Owen Wilson's characters choose a new dog
You're both dog owners and lovers. Did you have to audition with the dogs to see how you interacted and worked together?
Jennifer Aniston: No. We pretty much got the job.
Owen Wilson: I think they were just hoping that the chemistry would be there between the 22 Marleys and us.
Jennifer Aniston: Luckily it was.
Did you get to have a relationship with any of the 22 dogs then?
Jennifer Aniston: Clyde, the main Marley.
Owen Wilson: And Copper, who played old man, senior citizen Marley.
Jennifer Aniston: That was painful. That dog was actually 15 years old.
Owen Wilson: Clyde had been trained to be untrained and he would exhaust you on set. It was all coming from this exuberance.
Jennifer Aniston: And for him the set was just one big chew toy. He just had a ball. He was the happiest dog in the world.
Did they train the dogs to be naughty or did they give the dogs free rein?
Owen Wilson: Mathilde (DeCagny) was the dog trainer and there's one scene where he spontaneously lifts his leg and starts to do his business. She comes running on set, 'No Clyde'. And the director's like, 'Yes. Let him do it'.
Jennifer Aniston: Anything he did wrong you praise. So he really couldn't have a bad take.
Did you bring your dogs on set?
Jennifer Aniston: I brought Norman, my older dog.
Owen Wilson: My dog's in the movie, he makes a little cameo. His name's Garcia. He's an Australian cattle dog and he is in the ball park montage sequence.
Jennifer Aniston: My dog was actually in the dog beach montage but didn't quite make the cut.
Owen, your parents are in the film as well. Is that right?
Owen Wilson: Yes. My mother and father. My dad had been in another movie with me but it was my mother's first time. My dad was kind of cocky. Right after the first take he said, 'Is it too early to say a star is born?' He really did.
Where do they appear in the movie?
Owen Wilson: They appear in the montage. They play my parents. A tough role. They kept calling me Owen in the scenes and that's not my character's name, John.
Marley was played by 22 different dog actors during the film
At the beginning their relationship is very romantic, isn't it?
Owen Wilson: It's funny because most romantic comedies begin with the guy and girl walking into the sunset but in this one we're together, we're in love and it's like, what's next?
For me, one of the messages that comes out of this film is that it's OK to feel like you're not ready to grow up. Is that how you see it?
Owen Wilson: I think so. My friend Sebastian, that character in the movie, seems to have more of a carefree life, is still single and sometimes John can feel sad with the responsibility of the family. But it is one of those things. You don't necessarily get training on how you're supposed to behave. You just sort of wing it and figure it out together. And that's what we do as a couple - figure it out.
Is it easier to deal with the pressure of the paparazzi and fans when there's two of you travelling around together doing promotional work?
Owen Wilson: I know it's been nice just to be with Jen. But to do the interviews with her is so much easier. You can tune out sometimes and let the other person go in.
Jennifer Aniston: You can let your jet lag hit in and he'll take over. It's just far more fun. That's why we had so much fun doing the movie. When you do them by yourself you're just lonely, bored at hearing yourself.
Owen Wilson and Jennifer Aniston were talking to Newsbeat entertainment reporter Sarah Jane Griffiths.
Marley & Me is out in cinemas now.