This Chinese new year reminds me of a film shoot I was on where we were filming rabbits. And trying to capture animals acting on set is always entertaining… no matter what happens.

The script called for the heroes (people) to liberate the many rabbits from their cages in the lab and for the rabbits to run, hop and skedaddle down the hallway and out of the building. It would be even better if they looked a little panicked as they made their escape to freedom, but hopping quickly would be sufficient. Sounds straightforward, doesn’t it? Dozens of rabbits running in one direction on cue. Uh-huh.

So we brought in a ferret to chase the rabbits. Everyone knows that rabbits and ferrets are natural enemies. I mean ferrets were raised to chase rabbits out of rabbit holes. What could go wrong?

On the day, what we didn’t foresee was… that both the rabbits and the ferret were raised in captivity. We may have known they were natural enemies of each other, but they didn’t. On set they merely padded up to each other nose-to-nose and sniffed a gentle “hello.” There was mild interest to indifference between them. Now what do we do?

In the end, we had someone just off-screen and around the hallway corridor push the rabbits around the corner into the hallway and into shot. Yes, if you really looked, you could see some of the rabbits sliding along the floor while a few others hopped around them like they were on a pleasant afternoon stroll.

The Year of the Rabbit is supposed to be more calm after the ferocious Year of the Tiger… and I know what they mean by calm rabbits, so I don’t doubt it!

Cheers & Gung Hay Fat Choy!