Lost Dog Tale 'Darling Companion' Will Run Away With Your Heart

Darling Companion Freeway
Sony Pictures Classics

Just when you felt your Uggie fever breaking, there's a new four-legged star on the Hollywood scene.

His name is Kasey, and he's the centerpiece of a new film from acclaimed writer and director Lawrence Kasdan. Darling Companion, Kasdan's first independent film, hits theaters in New York and Los Angeles today. The playbill is jam-packed with stars, including Diane Keaton, Kevin Kline, Dianne Wiest, Richard Jenkins, Elisabeth Moss and Sam Shepard.

The film opens with a woman named Beth (Keaton) and her daughter (Moss) saving a lost dog from alongside the freeway on a winter day in Denver. When Beth's husband (Kline) later loses the dog, aptly named Freeway, in the Rockies after their daughter's wedding, the family and some remaining guests set out on a desperate search for the missing pooch.

But this plot isn't just the stuff of Hollywood fiction — much of it really happened to Kasdan, the Chicago Tribune reports. Five years ago, Kasdan and his wife left their shelter dog, Mac, with a friend while they attended a wedding. Spooked by a mountain biker while hiking, Mac ran off in the mountains and went missing.

"We were worried something could happen to him in the mountains, but also it's that bond, that relationship you develop; you don't know how much it means until it's gone," Kasdan told the Tribune.

Fortunately, there was a happy ending for the Kasdans: Mac turned up, safe, after a few weeks. He even makes a quick cameo in Darling Companion. The film's plot seems to be a family affair, too; Meg Kasdan's sister saved her Chocolate Labrador from the side of the road in Detroit, and named the dog Freeway.

Watch the trailer below, and check the Sony Classics schedule to see when the film opens at a theater near you.

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