Every Time Power Of The Dog Is Said At The Oscars, $10,000 Will Be Donated To Animal Charities

Alright, let's have a show of hands. How many of you watched Jane Campion's "The Power of the Dog" and actually noticed the dog(s) in the movie? No, despite the evocative title, the moody Western isn't literally about any one dog. But, with that said, eagle-eyed viewers could've spotted at least 2 of them — one which Kodi Smit-McPhee's Peter plays with for a brief scene, and the other hidden in the panoramic mountains range that flanks the film's Montana ranch. If you still couldn't see it when Benedict Cumberbatch's Phil Burbank and the rest of his ranchers gazed at it from afar, then don't feel too bad. You can count yourself among the apparently unlucky 30% of audiences who missed out on it, too!

The 12-time Oscar-nominated film (including Best Director, which puts Campion in rarefied territory) is, naturally, much deeper and thought-provoking than that. Revolving around the odious Phil and the oppressive family drama concerning Peter, George (Jesse Plemons), and his newlywed wife Rose (Kirsten Dunst), the story steadily unravels when Phil's toxic, self-loathing, and obviously repressed behavior infects every level of the Burbank household and threatens to tear Peter's once-happy family apart. One could also say (not that I'd ever make this claim, of course) it's a film about learning how to make rope, the futile struggles in trying to get Benedict Cumberbatch to take a bath, and learning to appreciate all those endearing Bronco Henry memes. And, on top of it all, the rather literal-minded effort to find the eponymous dog.

In any case, that latter canine-related aspect of the quietly moving film has resulted in at least one worthy cause benefiting in a big way from the film's somewhat surprisingly strong showing in the Academy Award nominations, ahead of this year's ceremony. Read on for all the details!

The proceeds are going to a great paws (sorry)

By now, we're all well aware of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences' various attempts to spice up the Oscars telecast for this year, from online-driven popularity contests to their recent efforts to make up for inexplicably failing to invite Rachel Zegler to the awards ceremony. But who knew at least one possible solution all along would be to simply take the most nominated film, capitalize on its general focus on animals, and use it to raise money for an online veterinarian service!

That's where Pawp comes in, which according to Variety is described as "a 24/7 service app for cat and dog owners" that they can use to consult for all their veterinarian needs. The app has pledged to donate $10,000 to animal rescue services every single time the title "The Power of the Dog" is verbally spoken of throughout Oscar's night. The company could potentially send up to $1 million to various charitable causes by the end of the night, which is probably a solid bet considering the film has been nominated for a dozen categories: Best Picture, Best Director (Campion), Best Actor (Cumberbatch), Best Supporting Actor (Plemons and Smit-McPhee), Best Supporting Actress (Dunst), Best Adapted Screenplay (Campion), Best Cinematography (Ari Wegner), Best Film Editing (Peter Sciberras), Best Original Score (Jonny Greenwood), Best Production Design (Grant Major and Amber Richards), and Best Sound (Richard Flynn, Robert Mackenzie, Tara Webb).

As Pawp CEO Marc Atiyeh said in a statement:

"While 'Power of the Dog' has nothing to do with dogs, Pawp is thrilled that it is the most nominated film, guaranteeing pups in need will be this year's true winners."

The Academy Awards will take place this Sunday, March 27, 2022, on ABC. If they go a step further and turn the entire show into a glorified dog show to celebrate "The Power of the Dog" even more, I promise any ratings issues would become a thing of the past. But this is why I'm not in charge.