Channing Tatum stars as veteran road tripper with canine companion in new movie ‘Dog’

Channing Tatum is back at the box office with a story loosely based on Lulu, a dog he loved. The film also places the actor in the director’s chair for the first time.

“Dog” tells the story of an army ranger who tries again to be allowed to work after an injury. A superior tells him that if he wants to return, he must first deliver a fallen sergeant’s dog to his funeral. A man and his dog go on a life-changing road trip.

Oh – and the dog’s name is Lulu, after beloved pet Channing Tatum who was lost in 2018.

“She was probably one of the purest first loves of my life,” Tatum said. “She was, like, my little shadow. We weren’t going anywhere, doing anything without each other. I went to Big Sur kind of on one of the last days of her life and I took one last road trip and then, you know, we started the story.”

Tatum is in the director’s chair, along with longtime friend and collaborator Reid Carolin, who produced the “Magic Mike” movies.

“Imagine going to work with your brother, if you liked your brother, or, you know, your best friend, whatever,” Carolin said. “Like, it’s just – there’s a shortcut there. You can kind of look at yourself and know what you’re thinking and what to do. So that’s really nice.”

This is a road movie – not a war movie – but it was important to both men that they capture the good spirit of elite soldiers and their canine partners.

“It was really gratifying when they said, ‘I can’t believe you took the time to listen and get it right.’ And so that meant a lot, Carolin said.

As for Tatum, he has a very natural way of talking to this dog. And he thanks the real Lulu for that!

“I had been training and training for this movie for a long, long time,” Tatum said.

“Dog” is rated PG-13. It’s in theaters Friday, February 18.

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