Hovis’ Friday diary: ‘my TV debut’

  • Dear Diary

    Well finally it has happened. Finally my talents have been recognised and I am being given the chance to prove the great actor I am capable of being — forget the fact that mum says I am more Forrest Gump than Gandhi — people it’s next stop HOLLYWOOD.

    Well ok. Maybe not. BUT I did spend last week making a short Christmas message for the British Equestrian Federation (BEF) and Horse & Hound — without giving too much away (think of this as a verbal trailer for the actual film) I had a blast.

    Friday morning dawned bright and early and I was surprised to see mother’s car appearing down the drive. Not as surprised as she was to see me out in the field — it appears the boss lady had forgotten about my film debut. Mother was ecstatically thrilled to see my feathers were in the process of a mud pack and jumped about with glee at the thought of trying to get them white and dry again, within the hour we apparently had before the BEF arrived at the yard. Honest.

    While she scrubbed me within an inch of my tiny life, I was disappointed to learn that BEF didn’t in fact stand for Big Energetic Female, which is how I’d read the message she’d left on the yard board last week. Mum explained that the ladies who were coming to film me were from the British Equestrian Federation and that, as one of the governing bodies of our sport, I should be honoured that they even know who I am.

    I resisted the urge to point out how on earth could they be bigwigs in the sport and NOT know who I was, but since mum seemed to be in an uppity mood and was wielding a scrubbing brush rather too close to my manly parts — I decided that keeping my mouth shut was the order of the day. It should be noted that by the time we’d finished, mother looked like a drowned rat but I was at least clean again. Remember this fact — it has hilarious consequences later when I watched mother trying very hard not to throw a strop of diva-like proportions…

    Anyway, the ladies arrived complete with a lot of camera equipment and a surprise which I shall not reveal. Needless to say, after a few moments I had charmed the socks off them all and was listening to the “storyboard” for the shoot. The ladies acknowledged it was a big ask of me but did mother think I could do it? Mother reassured them I could while glaring at me in her very best “don’t you dare show me up” manner behind their backs. Suffice to say I know a good thing when it’s offered — a good showing here could lead to who knows what, so I got on with the job in hand with the minimum of fuss and complete professionalism.

    I must point out at this stage that I’ve never had any formal drama training so asking me to “talk” on command, nod, have things on my head and generally act like one of those Budweiser dudes — who have spent their lives doing this sort of thing — was a big deal. I tried my best and they seemed pleased. Which is more can be said for mother when they produced the most hideous Christmas jumper known to man and insisted mother had to play a role in the film. If it’s possible for someone to be simultaneously smiling while committing murder with their eyes then it’s fair to say mother managed it. Remember of course she had no make up on, was sporting the remnants of a black eye and thanks to my shower looked like a drowned poodle. Oh how I sniggered.

    So it took over four hours of filming for a few minutes of Christmas message but it was great fun and the ladies seemed pleased with me. Apparently, the footage is now off to be edited and dubbed — my voice is apparently to be played by a male Irish actor, so I just hope Colin Farrell doesn’t muck this up…

    So keep your eyes peeled on the run up to Christmas on the BEF social media and on our own dear Horse & Hound.

    In the meantime, if any of you need equine actors for TV/film/adverts I am available — just contact my agent (my mother) through the magazine office and I will get back to you. I’m off to practise my screen kissing with Dolly and to write my Oscars speech.



    “Hamlet” Hovis

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