John Grogan - The Longest Trip Home


A glimpse behind the movie

Tuesday, December 09, 2008

I should be packing for the premiere of the Marley & Me movie, which is Thursday night in Los Angeles. The whole family is going, and I have a million things to get done before we leave. But I wanted to take a second to share this short clip that ran on Access Hollywood about the movie.

Both Owen Wilson and Jennifer Aniston are on the media circuit promoting the movie, and there are many new interviews and clips out there, but this one shows Clyde, the crazy Lab who plays Marley in his prime, doing his best Marley imitation.

I'll let you all know how the premiere goes. Should be fun!

posted by John Grogan at 4:43 PM


Blogger Jess said...

Loved your book Marley and Me! My wife and I can't wait for the movie to open.

6:31 PM  
Blogger Gabriella said...

Just finished your book an hour or so ago and I have finally stopped crying. I went and hugged my boy Bailey (10 year old Golden Retriever) for a good half hour and then went online to this website. Loved your book--it truly resonated with me and I dread the day that Bailey leaves us. Right now, I'll focus on the good days and look forward to the movie! Thanks for a great, touching read.

1:30 AM  
Blogger Gi said...

Hi John!
Wow, I laughed a lot with the scene of Marley hanging out of the car!
Can't wait for the movie! It's comming this month here in Brazil too!

Giovana, 19
São Paulo - SP - Brazil

3:52 AM  
Blogger Ailee said...

Your book is amazing! I love it so much! Have read it over 5 times, still cry at the end, even if i know what happens now. Some bits are so funny though, like dog beach! I wanna see the movie now! Your book is the best book i've ever read!

11:03 AM  
Blogger Sofia said...

The first dog I owned as an adult was a yellow lab named Simba. She was tragically hit by a car and died too young at 6. She was the queen of escape and I joked she was such an expert she could have escaped from Alcatraz and survived. My friend bought Marley and me for me for my birthday two years ago. I tried to read it two times before and always begin to cry around page 20 or so when you bring Marley home. You talk about sleeping with your arm on him the first night so he wouldn't be lonely. Got me every time. Well, last night I finally finished it. With the release of the movie around the corner, I figured I better suck it up and get through it before the endless running of previews. I cried throughout the book. Some people have dogs and some people have four legged additions to their family. There is a real difference in the way they see dogs and you were able to connect with owners like me who can't imagine a home without a dog. I had a friend give me a puzzled look when I told her how much the book made me cry. Clearly she doesn't understand the connection that we make with our canine "children". I have two female black labs from the SPCA and pound. I also rescued a stray on the highway a month ago. Here's to never having a day without coming home wondering what is in store for me to clean up! Signed, Minnie, LuLu & Max's mom

12:54 PM  
Blogger Jane said...

I would leave this comment for the producers of the movie but don't know how to contact them. From what I've seen on the trailer for the movie I find it totally irresponsible the way that beautiful dog is being held out the car window while it's moving! Don't the fools that make movies like this know how many idiots are out there and might copycat? It's dangerous!

1:31 PM  
Blogger Hannah-Cherie said...

I love Marley and Me! I am coming to the end and don't want to continue as I don't want Marley to die, I have a dog and I will be heartbroken :( I can't wait to see the movie, enjoy the premiere!

3:09 PM  
Blogger DanaS said...

The thought of that poor dog suffering in that garage, being beat, and finally dying alone in a vet's office makes me so sad I can barely breathe. It was not the dogs fault he had energy, he was not a bad dog-you were bad owners. Hopefully you will not own any more dogs.

8:04 PM  
Blogger The Nut House... said...

It took me more than a month to actually purchase this book. I picked it up, put it down, over and over again. I just knew it. It would make me laugh, make me cry and in the end, I knew he would die. I didn't think I could deal with the end of Marley, yet now I'm trying to finish the book before the movie comes out. I just hope that the movie does your book justice. Thank you for sharing a part of your life.

9:23 AM  
Blogger Erin said...

John, you are a wonderful writer. I loved your book. Your story hit home for me... it's my favorite book. I'm so happy you chose to share it with the world. I posted a little extra publicity for you on my blog - as if you need it. :)


9:39 AM  
Blogger Mrs. Atkinson's College Prep English said...

Labs do have big hearts despite their zest for life. I am on my second lab. My first dog Coffee was much like your Marley. He stole food right out of poeple's hands, constantly raided the garbage, and took everyone's socks. However, Coffee had a big heart and always consoled people when they were sad. Coffee did not like people to be sad. Unfortunately, Coffee had to be put under because of a servere illness from which he would never recover. I had to have Coffee put to sleep without me in the room because Coffee knew I was very sad. I now have a black lab named Tank. Tank is very different from Coffee and Marley because Tank behaves. However, Tank still has the big lab heart and serves as a literacy dog in a library. Thank-you for writng a book that shows that dogs have a heart and earn their place in families as our companions. I hope you and your family enjoy the movie premiere.

4:46 PM  
Blogger Martha said...

I just started reading your book today. Had no idea it was a movie, just picked it up off the library shelf because it caught my eye. It's had me laughing out loud and crying at the same time.

7:58 PM  
Blogger Sue said...

How sad, but typical, that this book and this movie is receiving praise. The majority of Americans view the way Marley was treated as perfectly acceptable. It is a sad commentary on how Americans value their pets. Marley was abused and neglected and died alone. This movie, just like the book will do nothing more than justify further neglect and abuse.

12:37 PM  
Blogger Sue said...

This post has been removed by the author.

12:38 PM  
Blogger FerlayJosefin said...

I saw the movie last night and it was very touching. Not a dry eye in the house. After the book, I went and hugged my dog, Jack for the longest time.

I am deeply touched by yours and your family's affection of Marley. I grew up with dogs, my first dog died 6 years ago. We were all there when we buried him. My dad couldn't bear the fact that there would be dirt touching his face so we wrapped him in a blanket it too. We all couldn't stop crying for at least 30 minutes.
Thanks for sharing your story!

3:31 PM  
Blogger Denise said...

WOW!, I bought the book Marley& Me. It took me about a little over a month to read it because I don't get very much time to read with a 19 month old child running around. I loved the book, I couldnt quit laughing when I read about the window thing. I don't usually cry when I read a book but I did when I read this one. It makes you stop and aprechiate life and those close to you. I can't wait to see the movie it opens Christmas Day, and I'm looking forward to reading the next book.

9:06 PM  
Blogger Liz Mckinney said...

Hello, my name is Liz mckinney, i recently bought your book, believe it or not im actually related to you, Your father Bill grogan, was my fathers brother(Jim Grogan).Do you remember him?E-mail me at :)

11:13 AM  
Blogger Gi said...

I finally bought your new book! We don't have the portuguese version here in Brazil yet; but I was very happy to finally find the book!
I started reading today; I've only read until chapter 2, but I'm already enjoying it!
You are a terrific writer!
Congratulations for one more success!

Giovana - 19
São Paulo - Brazil

2:30 PM  
Blogger Terese Boeck said...

Just finished reading Marley & Me, sobbed throughout the final chapter. So many emotions bombarded me
I just lost Jeff, my husband of 28 years, very suddenly to an aortic dissection on September 26th. Age 53.
He never met a dog he didn't love, and I was actually comforted knowing he is now reunited with our 2 Cairn Terriers.
I adopted a Black Lab, Oliver, for him 6 months after our terriers died.
He had always said he wanted a 'dog-sized' dog next time around. What he got was a 100 pounder. He often wondered out loud how I confused dog with pony!
Oliver has so many of Marley's traits, as do so many labs.
John, thank you for writing this book. It has affected me in ways I never thought possible.

4:35 PM  
Blogger Terese Boeck said...

This post has been removed by the author.

4:37 PM  
Blogger Martha said...

I just finished your book tonight. I loved it! Such a great commentary on man's best freind. I can not imagine life without dogs.

Thank you for putting into words what so many of us have felt when it came time to say good bye to our faithful friends. It's a pain that never feels quite justified and yet is intensly real.

Who is "Sue" anyway? Ahh well , I guess there always has to be somebody out there trying to dampen the weather.

6:17 PM  
Blogger Cathy W said...

This was a wonderful book--I loved Marley. I wept at the end of the book...I feel like I knew Marley personally, and I miss him! I am getting teary-eyed just thinking about him.
I can't wait to see the movie!

4:30 PM  
Blogger Amanda Pina said...

I know this movie is going to be a huge sucess!
Helo from a big fan from Brazil!

I have to wait until january to watch, unfortunately...

7:10 PM  
Blogger carm said...

loved your book. I have 2 labs(chocolate and yellow) our yellow, Jake, is the opposite of Marley but our chocolate, Tyler could be his twin Needless to say I could definitely relate to your book and toward the end had to keep putting it down because of the conclusion. As I said before excellent story

5:44 AM  
Blogger carm said...

loved your book. I have 2 labs(chocolate and yellow) our yellow, Jake, is the opposite of Marley but our chocolate, Tyler could be his twin Needless to say I could definitely relate to your book and toward the end had to keep putting it down because of the conclusion. As I said before excellent story

5:44 AM  
Blogger Cathy said...

I loved your book. You are a great story teller. I laughed and I cried so hard for the first time in over a year at the end. I have been there. Afterwards, I took my wonderful 5 year old hound dog mix, Baxter, to the park so he could run with friends in celebration of his young life. I look forward to seeing the movie. The clip you shared with us was wonderful. Thanks and congratulations.

7:34 AM  
Blogger Todd Nichols said...

Just finished with the book. I'm glad I was the only one home because I cried like a baby. I don't get emotional often but this story grabbed my heart! I will be a first time dog owner in the next couple of weeks to a cute 8 week old yellow lab. I guess i'm in for an adventure!

12:01 PM  
Blogger elmo said...

Just finished reading Marley and Me this morning. I had to stop and wipe the tears from my eyes so that I could finish reading. What an amazing book you have written. I always had a dog growing up and miss having one now. My parents have a 9 year old black lab named Allie that we brought home when she was 8 weeks old. She is an amazing dog especially with my 4 nieces. I know there will be alot of tears shed the day she is no longer with us. Especially the girls as they have grown up with Allie. I look forward to seeing the movie when it comes to the theater.

5:00 PM  
Blogger Marina said...


It would be great if the PSA could have been shown at the theater before your movie started during the trailers for upcoming movies. It certainly would have gotten a wider audience. Also, having read the book and seeing your pictures as a younger man it was surprising to see how unrecognizable you are now in comparison. Kinda like not seeing someone's kid since they were a young age and then again as an adult. You are even more handsome!

9:50 PM  
Blogger Andressa : ) said...

Hi there! I´m from Brazil and I'm so happy because Marley and Me the movie will be released here also, in December 25. It was great news for me because I thought the movie would be released only in USA. I already read the book, and i just love it! Thank you for shering your life story with us!

4:04 AM  
Blogger Allison said...

On my recent visit back to my old digs in West Palm Beach I borrowed a copy of this book I'd given to a friend to read on the flight home. So much of the book hit home...from Marley's antics to your stories about West Palm. I lived there for about 10 years, about 1/2 mile from where you lived. I know all about Dixie Highway, the charm, the danger, etc... It took me back to a great time in my life.
The story of Marley falling off the sea wall was one I didn't think I'd hear again. I had been crying so hard I could barely read, when I came to that part and laughed outloud. Only because it happened to me...on the same wall, with my crazy lab! Only she didn't fall in, she dangled from her collar until I could pull her up. Luckily she was still only a baby and didn't weigh that much.
My 12 year old black lab mix, Madison -or Houdini, as I like to call her - has begun to look at stairs as Marley did and struggles to get around. She's deaf and I see her eyes starting to fog. Your description of the end touches home to a lot of people. I know it is coming, but it's hard to think about life without her. Thank you for your telling your story.

9:52 AM  
Blogger Amanda Pina said...

Todd Nichols, good luck on that. But be awere of everything.. the good things, the bad things... You gonna live with then for the rest of their lives, or your life.

I've been there, I got 4 dogs now, but I alredy lost 2 (so 6 dogs in 17 years in my home, I'm 25 y/o), one this year, one lat year. They were really old, 15 an 16 years old, I was there by their side in the exactly moment they gone, both dogs... and that hurts. Hurts a lot. Still hurt.. a little bit less as the time goes by.

I notice that big old dogs suffer more than small ones. It's hard the carry then, cause they are heavy, and their legs got more fragil and weak (gravity law, I think). I'm almost in the end of the book. I know what's going to happen, but I still don't have the courage to read... I'm going to cry like a baby... I'm going to cry in the day I lost them... the big one, suffering of tumor in the stomach, kidney, lungs, everywhere... the second one I had to put down, cause a brain tumor. One day she was fine, like a ordinary old dog, next day she was shaking... and I was in shock.
Be aware of that, but be aware too of the good and great things you are going to experiment.

7:09 AM  
Blogger harleysmompeg said...

hi john: you and marley needed to be revealed to the public. i LOVED THIS story. my husband died in march and the greif is just too much some days. i have not laughed in well over a year. your marley made me actually laugh john. i laughed so hard, and cried so deeply, it was waking up my brotherat 2 a.m. you and marley gave me a gift, only hearts can really give to one another. you gave me HOPE for brighter days. i live right down the road from you in quakertown. merry christmas.

6:41 AM  
Blogger BensUncle said...

Read the book, which of course is a must read for any dog lover. BUT, just saw the movie today. It may take me a week to get over it. I laughed so hard, at so many scenes, I thought people were going to complain. Needless to say, we've personally experienced almost all of them. My wife and I spent much of the remainder reminiscing about our experiences. Then you broke my heart. Anyone who's had to put a loved furkid down, knows the experience. It took an real effort not to openly sob right there in the theater. My sinuses will be messed up for a week. There are going to be a lot of yellow labs named Marley in 2009. BTW, I had not doubt you'd keep Woodson. Best wishes to you and your little guy.

8:33 PM  
Blogger Alison said...

Is the movie base on a true story am asking because i have book on marley and me and two of my friends said looks like its base on a true story they where read the back cover of the book

8:44 AM  
Blogger 77 said...

The movie was great the book even better. What a great writer youare. You capture everything. It's like I am there. My sister kim Addonizio a writer told me to read it. thanks for a great journey!!

1:27 PM  
Blogger LI Linda said...

Seeing the movie left me feeling sad, but at the same time happy that your family had Marley. Any other family probably would have given up on him, but you didn't. Your love for Marley was wonderful and I'm sure still is. Thank you for such a wonderful story. Congratulations on adopting Woodson. There is a reason Woodson is a part of your family just as a reason why Marley was a part of your family.

7:39 AM  
Blogger Gina said...

I read the book 3 years ago & must admit as an owner of 5 rescue dogs, 2 that are labradors, I found it quite depressing. But I have just one simple question about the movie which I can't get a straight forward, direct answer to. Were all the labradors, I believe somewhere between 18 & 24 of them that acted in the movie adopted? I read 'some were adopted' but surely this can't be so. I know a responsible pet owner & author who is sending out a message to adopt from shelters surely had this figured out before hand, even with all the other's involved in the making of Marley & Me you have the ultimate say & power. Was an adoption in place for each & every animal before TPTB took them from shelters & breeders, trained them to act? After filming completed was an adoptiom already set in place for these shelter animals & those from breeders? Any answer other than yes would be a major letdown to myself & other animal rights advocates. Please respond honestly, yes or no.

12:18 PM  
Blogger Evelyn said...

Your writing ability is wonderful!! I am 66 years old and have just finished Marley and Me. (rec'd the book for Christmas.) Thanks for sharing your story with us all. I to once took care of a Lab mixed with what I don't know, didn't own her but she moved to my house and here she lived until she died. Susie was so afraid of storms. Summers were not her favorite time of the year. I hope you have not turned your back on God (this piece of scaring info from some of the comments). I would love to read your story on everything God and Grace, with all the wit and heart felt emotion of Marley and Me. Would you consider this? I now must run out to find your new book...I am hooked on your stories. Evelyn

12:24 PM  
Blogger Gina said...

Mr. Grogan, as much as I wish you were a true lover of animals, and put there needs before your financial gain, I believe you are a sell out, and it's a shame. The filmakers used dogs from shelters & breeders, yet not all were adopted. So what happened to them. as the writer of the movie you have the ultimate say & should have made sure adoption was set in motion for each & every shelter & puppy mill labrador that acted on your set. Until I'm told different, I presume it's the truth, that some went back to the shelters from which they came. How sad, especially when they were in the care of such rich & powerful people who did nothing to help them after they were used up. Unless I'm told otherwise, I can only assume it's true.

12:45 PM  
Blogger Gina said...

Animal Shelters Gearing Up for Post-Christmas Doggie Abandonment
Hit Film "Marley and Me" Will Create Big Demand for Labs and Subsequent Release to Animal Shelters

Dec 24, 2008

Total Views: 10,822

It happened after 101 Dalmatians. It happened after Beethoven. It even happened after Beverly Hills Chihuahua. People fall in love with the dogs they see on the big screen and run out to get one of their own. Sadly, too many of these impulse acquisitions end up with dogs being dumped on animal shelters after the owners realize dog ownership isn't as cute as it is in the movies.
full article:

1:14 PM  
Blogger karmadestiney said...

Thank you for showing the love, personality, loyalty, and character animals can bring into a family. You are amazing!

2:24 PM  
Blogger Mark McElwee said...

I miss your Inky work. You might remember that I wrote comments to you in response to your features. One I especially remember was your piece about my friend and prof, John Keenan.
You're taking some undeserved hits. I hope people read about Woodson. And there will probably be lots of dogs getting good homes because of M&M. Such doom and gloom!
Our son is a K-9 officer. Some would think that's a cruel use for a dog, too. They should see the care and concern those officers have for their partners.
On this 5th day of Christmas, congratulations and a Happy Christmas to you and yours. Continued success in the future, John.

12:15 AM  
Blogger CandiMc said...

Hello John! I just wanted to give you a huge THANK YOU for this amazing, realistic, and heart warming book. This book/movie has even brought my husband and I closer. He has never been the kind of guy who showed emotion easily but when he saw this movie on Christmas day he bawled like a baby. Even after we got home from my parents house hours later he was still emotional. He climbed into our bed and called both of our dogs, Libby (a black lab) and Skeeter (a min pin) up on the bed and held them both crying. He then thanked me for taking him to see the movie because it taught him to appreciate and love our dogs the way I already do. He has been so sweet with them and has really enjoyed them since Christmas day. Thank You! Also, here is a funny story for you...On my birthday-Dec. 11th my husband and I went out to get our dog's christmas presents. We came home with 2 new dog beds, bones, squeak toys, treats etc. and walked in the door to find all of the presents under our tree ripped to shreds. The wrapping paper was everywhere, even on top of our kitchen table. There was a digital camera for a friend that was ripped from its box, batteries and memory card on either side of the room, dvd gifts were ruined and tree needles everywhere. It was all done by our 4 year old lab Libby! Labs are sure wild and crazy but they love with all of their hearts and that makes them so worth it! Again, thank you for your book and your movie! Both were phenomenal!

11:13 AM  
Blogger Lady Angel said...

Dear Mr. Grogan,
I met you two years ago in Chester, Pa
for a book signing of Marley and Me. I just lost my precious Lady
November 7. I was lucky to have her for 17 years. At the end of the
movie, it brought back tears when
I had to put my Lady down. Just
like our children, we have to love
and accept each one for their
special qualities. No one can replace our children, pets, family
members etc. We have to accept
our new family members for their
qualities and what they bring into
our families. No two dogs, etc.
are the same. Marley was a fantastic dog just needed Caesar
Millan to have been there to teach
you, your family as well as me
what we were doing wrong with our
pets to make them happier. We
learn from our mistakes and choices
and we will do better with our
next pet. Your heart and soul
loved Marley because of what he
gave to you and your family. I know Lady showed me and taught me
so much. A love I never experienced before. A love greater
than I ever felt with any Human.
They are wonderful creatures that
God has blessed us with. Enjoy
your family and all your precious
pets. By the way, I enjoyed your
last book. The longest Journey Home. Looking forward to many more
books of yours in the future.
Carol Anne Pierce
Sewell, New Jersey

7:58 PM  
Blogger Sarah said...

I loved te movie... I cryed a lot! I came home crying.... I have 4 "marleys", and at the time I entered home I saw them I cryed more and kissed them!!!
your history is the BEST I have heard in all my life!just tell jennie I hate when she sent marley way...
Jonh!!! I could fell your feellings...
this movie is FANTASTIC.... every body who has a dog cry, and every one who dont have after see that, wanna have one just to know what is a true love!!
jonh I love marley, I know it was your dog!!!! but after the movie I start love it a lot too.

3:54 AM  
Blogger Marcia said...

I saw the movie this afternoon and for a Tue afternoon the theatre was full. I loved the movie but cried for an hour after it ended. Being in a life long family that includes 2 dogs, I felt I lost one of our dogs all over. Everything was simular to our own dogs. We have 3 dogs buried in the back yard and we too have buried them with toys charished items. We even have a stone on top of each grave as a maker. We also have a cat and bunny buried in the yard. As much as we love sharing our lives with each of our pets, the hardest part is that we have to let then go. They have each been as close and as loved as any family member and I really believe I will see them again someday. Their pure spirts must truly be with God. And remember what God spells backwards. I believe Dogs pure hearts are very God like.
Keep writing Dog stories. I love reading them.

4:27 PM  
Blogger Marcia said...

I am reading the other peoples blogs and do not understand the comments that think you mistreated the dog. I will have to read the book also, just saw the movie but did not see anything that looked like the dog or dogs were mistreated. I see nothing wrong with them being put in the garage when they are not house trained. There is shelter in the garage and they can be safe there. I see many cruel people who tie dogs to poles without shelter and food and do nto treat them well. Marley appeared to be treated very well. Marley was very lucky to have a good home where he was loved, fed and even shared family members beds.

4:47 PM  
Blogger Elizabeth said...

John. Loved the movie...but your book will remain with me forever. I will always smile when I think of Marley.
Thanks for sharing.
Liz James

8:57 PM  
Blogger julie said...

Wow...what a book! I cried like a baby! Thank you for sharing your experience! Our 1 1/2 choc lab Trixie is probably better behaved than Marley but does share some traits--her love of people and other dogs and ability to draw you in with her licks and send you packing with her farts! We potty trained her along with our toddler son---she did better and our son learned to pee outside! Her favorite treats--apples, broccoli and bars of soap! Threats to wash her whiny mouth out with soap are scoffed at! Oh how she loves her medicine--my husband gave her benadryl after she ate a wasp and it stung her! She would do it again!

8:22 PM  
Blogger Kathryn said...

My Aunt recommend the book Marley and Me back a couple of years ago and I went out and brought it right away and began reading it. I am a nurse and I work nights and will read it when it was either slow or on breaks. I started crying about half way through the book and all my co wokers were asking me if I was ok, I had to explain it was the book. I knew what was going to happen because all dogs lives have to come to an end but I didn't want to read about it. I had to come home and hug my dober/irish setter mix.
I was reading so much of the book to my friend she went out and brought it too and I loaned my copy of the book to my mom (she is the biggest animal lover in the world. If she could afford it she would adopt all the strays in the area). She told me that she was crying too.
When I heard that the book was going to be a movie I was over-joyed. I couldn't wait to see the movie. My husband and I went to see it last night and I started crying about half way through it and couldn't stop until after the movie was over. I think that the movie really did a good job staying with the book.
Thank you for sharing your life with Marley. and I can't wait to read your other book. I love your sense of humor.

7:36 AM  
Blogger ~*Kayla*~ said...

I loved your book so much! I read the ending today in school and tried really hard not to cry! I was hoping to see a picture where you buried Marley, I think that would be nice. I never had a chance to bury my dog, Blue. But hopefully, I'll be able to bring home Jasmine's Ashes when she dies (hopefully that will be a long time from now since she's only three!).

2:57 PM  
Blogger megan said...

I was absolutely taken by Marley and your family. It was such a good read, and the first book to ever make me laugh and cry out loud! Every dog lover can relate to this story. You're an incredible writer, and i wish you and your family the very best of luck in whatever life has in store!

Oh and PS:

I couldn't help but respond to DanaS's comment.

Obviously you must have been on something when reading this book if you consider them to be bad owners. And he was not alone in the vets office, as i recall John was there with him. That dog had a great life with the best owners possible. So suck it!

Loved the movie too by the way, but thought the part where you and Marley sled down the hill should have been in it!

11:55 PM  

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