Tuesday, 6 September 2016

Scottish Mussel - featuring Rudi the Otter


A new British film is being launched on 23rd September starring Talulah Riley, Martin Compton, and Joe Thomas of In Betweeners fame, along with our tame otters. I travelled up to Dunoon in Scotland to help with the scenes that, in the story, entail an injured otter brought into a wildlife conservation centre set in a beautiful location outside Glasgow.
Sophie Neville with Beanie the Otter
Belinda the Otter with Sophie and Daphne Neville
The romcom is written and directed by Talulah Riley who also stars in what promises to be an amusing movie. Talulah was keen to feature our very energetic young male otter Rudi in a scene where the otter is released back into the wild.  To achieve this on film, without losing him altogether, was quite a feat but he enjoyed himself and the result looks endearing.
When one of the producers asked if I had worked on any other films featuring animals, I had to admit there have been quite a few. We had a baboon in the studio once and I became quite used to filming with trained elephants. I worked with a whole variety of exotic animals on the vet series ‘One by One’ from a pelican to a full grown leopard. In the mid 1980’s I was lucky enough to spend four months on Corfu making the first BBC adaptation of Gerald Durrell’s autobiography ‘My Family and Other Animals’ with Brian Blessed and a huge number of tortoises. As it happens, Rudi will appear in the next series of The Durrells, with filming due to start soon.
To see more about what the otters have been up to, please go to Daphne Neville’s website here.
You can read about living with tame otters in my book ‘Funnily Enough’ available in the UK here in paperback or on Kindle here
The DVD, which will be released on 3rd October, is available for pre-order here
dphne-nevilles-otter
One of our hand-reared otters who stars in ‘Scottish Mussel’