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ABC Family and Starz join holiday forces with 'The Dog Who Saved Christmas Vacation'

by jmaloni

Movie premieres during the network's 'Countdown to 25 Days of Christmas'

Tue, Oct 5th 2010 02:40 pm
ABC Family and Starz Media will once again celebrate the holidays together, as the network bought the U.S. cable TV rights to the new live-action holiday movie, "The Dog Who Saved Christmas Vacation." The film will air as part of ABC Family's November "Countdown to 25 Days of Christmas" programming event.

A Starz Media presentation, the two-hour original movie, a sequel to last year's "The Dog Who Saved Christmas," makes its worldwide premiere on ABC Family on Sunday, Nov. 28, at 8 p.m. ET/PT. Jeffrey Schenck and Barry Barnholtz are executive producers on the film, which was written by Michael Ciminera, Richard Gnolfo and Peter Sullivan, from a story by Schenck, Sullivan, Ciminera and Gnolfo. Michael Feifer directed the movie.

"Dog" features Paris Hilton (in her first voice-over role) as "Bella," a French poodle who becomes the target of inept thieves during a holiday getaway. Returning as the voice of the misguided guard dog "Zeus," in pursuit of Bella's affections, is Mario Lopez. The movie also stars Gary Valentine ("The King of Queens"), Dean Cain ("Lois and Clark: The New Adventures of Superman," "Out of Time"), Elisa Donovan ("Clueless," "Sabrina, the Teenage Witch"), Casper Van Dien (Starship Troopers"), Joey Diaz ("The Deported," "The Longest Yard"), Kayley Stallings ("Monk"), Brennan Bailey ("My Sister's Keeper"), Mindy Sterling (the "Austin Powers" trilogy), Catherine Oxenberg ("Watch Over Me," "Dynasty") and Adrienne Barbeau ("Maude," "Carnivale").

"We had great success last year with ‘The Dog Who Saved Christmas,' so it was an easy decision to revisit our favorite dog, Zeus, the Bannister family, and their holiday misadventures," said Starz Media Executive Vice President of Worldwide Distribution Gene George. "And we couldn't be happier to once again help ABC Family kick off its ‘Countdown to 25 Days of Christmas' event. ABC Family is the ideal place for this family film to debut."

"We're very excited to be partnering again with Starz Media on this sequel," said Tom Zappala, executive vice president, program acquisitions and scheduling, Disney ABC Television Group. "Last year's ‘The Dog Who Saved Christmas' stood as one of the network's biggest hits during our enormously popular holiday programming event."

In its November 2009 television premiere on ABC Family, "The Dog Who Saved Christmas" became one of the season's most-watched cable movies in total viewers (4.1 million).

Anchor Bay Entertainment, Starz Media's market-leading home entertainment division, will release the movie on DVD just 10 days later, on Dec. 7.

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