A few days ago, the world learned that rescue dogs were learning to drive cars in New Zealand in the hopes that it helps people appreciate the intelligence of these fine creatures, at least until they mow down a crowd of pedestrians. It seems like an odd idea, but at the Ziegfeld Theater’s screening of The Hobbit last night, native New Zealander and Hobbit co-writer Philippa Boyens explained why the project had her support: Basically, the dogs can’t be any worse than the people.
“I tell you what, I suspect that they’re better than some of the Kiwis down there!” Boyens, who also co-wrote all three Lord of the Rings films, told us. “We are not renowned as great drivers, I have to be honest. So this could very well be a good idea.”
And while Boyens doesn’t think very highly of her countrymen’s ability to control a car, she does have faith in their ability to teach dogs to do pretty much anything. “If you could see our farmers working their dogs on the farm, you would think this is possible,” she told us. “Those guys are incredible.”