The canine rom-com stars Nina Dobrev, Adam Pally, Eva Longoria and more

“The world is a really hard place right now to deal with every day. I wanted to dive into a movie that would make people feel good for a while,” says Ken Marino. “And I am sucker for dogs.”

Enter Dog Days. Out Aug. 10, Marino’s new film is a “Love Actually meets Marley and Me” canine rom-com stacked with an impressive animal-loving cast. Eva Longoria, Vanessa Hudgens, Finn Wolfhard, Nina Dobrev, Adam Pally and more are the stars of this multi-narrative film — and of the exclusive photos below that offer a sneak peek into this summer family movie.

Of course the true stars of Dog Days are the canines themselves. The film follows the lives of multiple dogs and shows how these furry friends affect their owners’ lives and bring the characters of the movie together.

Credit: Jacob Yakob / LD Entertainment

Marino, 49, and his wife Erica Oyama, who co-wrote Dog Days with Elissa Matsueda, found inspiration in the pooches around them, namely their two rescue dogs.

Credit: Jacob Yakob / LD Entertainment

For fellow dog owners, some of the movie’s moments will be all too familiar, like trying to convince your pup to do its business after spending 15 minutes pacing the same patch of grass.

Credit: Jacob Yakob / LD Entertainment

Before this pooch-packed movie could be made, there had to be several canine casting calls. A cute, yet difficult, process for Marino, because who wants to say no to an adorable dog?

Credit: Jacob Yakob / LD Entertainment

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“To the dogs that didn’t make the movie, know it wasn’t personal,” the director jokes.

Credit: Jacob Yakob / LD Entertainment

For those who might somehow feel this movie is only for “dog people,” Marino wants them to know there is more to Dog Days than just oodles of sweet, fluffy thespians.

“It’s about how people learn to be better people and how dogs help us and guide us in the right direction,” he says.