OSCAR-WINNING actress Hilary Swank returned to Graaff-Reinet this week to lay to rest the dog she adopted while filming in the Karoo town eight years ago.
Swank stayed there in 2004 for the filming of Red Dust, a movie about a South African-born lawyer living in New York, who returns home to intercede for a black politician who was tortured during apartheid.
During her stay there, a little stray Jack Russell-Corgi mix tugged on the Hollywood star's heartstrings. Swank adopted the stray from a Graaff-Reinet animal shelter and named him Karoo, taking him home with her to the US when filming wrapped up.
This week, Swank returned to the small town to scatter the ashes of her beloved companion, who died earlier this year.
It is not clear where little Karoo's ashes were scattered.
The star slept over at the upmarket Andries Stockenstrom guesthouse in Graaff-Reinet on Tuesday night. Guesthouse owner and chef Gordon Wright said she was the perfect guest.
Wright was not allowed to inform anyone of Swank's visit until she had left. "She is fabulous, relaxed and down to earth. She just loves nature," he said last night.
She was accompanied by her two other dogs, named Kai and RooMe. "I cooked dinner for her and her dogs. It was fun."
He said before she went back to Cape Town yesterday where she is filming a movie, he packed her pets a "doggie bag". "She also took a loaf of our homemade bread with her. She just loved it."