[NatGeo] – Santa Clarita resident Cesar Millan holds nothing back when discussing the good, the bad and the ugly as he reflects on his personal life story for the new one-hour biopic, “Cesar Millan: The Real Story,” premiering Thanksgiving weekend, Sunday, Nov. 25, at 9 p.m. ET/PT on Nat Geo WILD. The biopic features, for the first time on television, the comprehensive, behind-the-scenes story of Millan’s incredible rise from poverty to fame.
The one-hour special follows Cesar’s incredible rise from impoverished illegal immigrant to celebrity dog trainer to international superstar. The cameras roll as he embarks on his latest Cesar LIVE world speaking seminar, begins filming his new Nat Geo WILD television series “Leader of the Pack” in Spain, and leads thousands of dogs and owners on a Pack Walk in Washington, D.C., to raise awareness about dog adoption.
“For years, the world has known me as the Dog Whisperer,” says Cesar. “But not many people know my personal story.” Until now.
In the new special, viewers will follow Cesar around the world as he inspires people to become pack leaders in their own lives in his latest world tour, and join him in Spain as he films his new series “Leader of the Pack”, which will sneak preview the same night, Sunday, November 25, at 10 p.m. ET/PT, before premiering in January.
During the hour, Cesar recalls how his incredible skill with dogs led to his rise to fame as the Dog Whisperer, and addresses those who are critical of his methods. “I don’t think there is only one way to help a dog,” says Millan. “In nine years on television I have shown that there are many ways. So when critics come after me, it doesn’t really bother me.” He continues, “My show gave people hope that they could have a good relationship with their dog. And that’s something that I’m very proud of.”
Cesar also reflects in detail on the impact his hectic travel schedule had on his family, and the darkest time in his life. While in England three years ago, he received a call from his wife telling him she wanted a divorce. “It was hard, because I wasn’t expecting it,” he says. “I went into a big depression. I lost a lot of weight. And I felt that I lost the most important thing, which was my family.”
But the story doesn’t end there. Cesar courageously pulls himself out of the dark time, and for the first time talks about finding new love and renewed personal balance.
“It’s rare when someone with his level of celebrity is willing to completely open up and share the struggle and hardship it took to find success and happiness,” says Geoff Daniels, executive vice president and general manager of Nat Geo WILD. “Cesar doesn’t hold anything back, and I’m certain our audience will feel even closer to him for it.”
“Everything I am, I learned in Mexico. And everything that I became, I learned in the United States. They both facilitated something very important for me,” adds Cesar at the end of the hour. “I think my life has everything, you know, it has comedy… has drama… has action. I don’t know about the ending yet. I’m just glad I can tell the story. Hopefully people get inspired, they get motivated. It doesn’t matter where you come from. Really what I would like for people to get out of this is just to not lose hope, no matter what happens. You should never lose hope.”