Well, sort of...
This film star is a car -- a beloved 1997 Subaru Impreza, to be precise. And it played a central role in the offbeat film Weiner Dog, by Director Todd Solondz ("Happiness" and "Welcome to the Dollhouse.")
How did that happen? And how did a '97 Subaru wind up playing yet another starring role, this time at WNYC? Here's the scoop...
"You expect me to work in these conditons? Where's my agent?" Dustin's Subaru on the set of Wiener Dog.
Dear Car Talk Vehicle Donation Services,
The Subaru was my first car, or I should say our first car: I shared it with my brother and sister (we’re triplets) when we all got our licenses on the same day. Though it has had many adventures since we got it 15 years ago, none is maybe more extraordinary then its final hurrah before being donated to WNYC.
It was the summer of 2015 and the Subie was starting to become a real financial burden. We had already paid for the registration and 6-months of insurance, when we discovered it could not pass inspection in New York due to its un-turn-offable check engine light. The end was in sight.
One night I got a text from a friend asking if we still had the car. Assuming he needed it to haul a trunk full of avocados or 18 sheets of plywood, I tried to diminish his expectations with “Sort of— but it’s in inspection limbo. Pourquoi monsieur?” His reply? “Filmaker Todd Solondz might pay you $2000 to use it in a movie. Wanna send me a couple pics?”
And guess what? It turns out, our Subie was a perfect fit for the movie, Wiener Dog! We even got to go visit the Subie on set for its first and only acting gig! When you see Wiener Dog, keep your eyes peeled as Greta Gerwig runs out of the vet with a zonked out wiener dog. You’ll see the Subie in all her big screen glory.
Subie's debut in Wiener Dog.
After Subie's brush with celebrity, we thought it was time to send her off to do a final good deed. As longtime Car Talk listeners, we knew that donating her to WNYC would be a fitting last gesture for our most noble of steeds. Although the Subie hadn't had a stereo in a few years (we stopped replacing it after it was stolen for a 3rd time), the local public radio station was always the first saved to the dial in whatever city the car happened to be in.
PS: You can check out the trailer for Wiener Dog here.