Monday, October 25, 2010

Update On THE HOBBIT Situation In New Zealand: New Photos!

Still no official word from New Zealand yet on whether Warner Bros will pull the plug on the Kiwi location for shooting THE HOBBIT or not.

What I can tell you is there are plenty of demonstrators who are voicing that they want the production to stay. Executives from Warner Bros are talking things over with Peter Jackson's team and key government officials - including the Prime Minister. Hopefully the noise from the street will nudge the ball along in Kiwi's favor.

From TVNZ: "Prime Minister John Key has accused the actors' unions of using The Hobbit as a way to advance their union "wish list". Key will meet several high-powered executives from the film's main producer Warner Brothers in Wellington over the next two days, hoping to convince them that there will be no issues about filming the movies in New Zealand.

...(Public) Rallies were held in Wellington, Auckland, Christchurch, Hamilton, Queenstown and Matamata, where the Hobbiton sets have been built."

A statement from Peter Jackson was read aloud to the 2000+ in Wellington
(via NZHerald): "Turning us into another state of Australia under the sway of a destructive organisation carries the very real risk of destroying the great big heart that beats inside our films," Sir Peter said.

"Don't open up the door to an Australian trade union who will never put the interests of Kiwis first, and invest that union with the p
ower to destroy everything we have built."

Sir Peter said the film industry was a family that loved its work. "That love ends up on the screen and I truly believe it sets our films apart from those made in any other country.

"I know your message to the studio will not go unnoticed. You have said loudly and clearly: New Zealand is where The Hobbit films should be made. Their creative DNA is here. This is where Middle Earth was born and this is where it should stay."

There is also an excellent interview on TVNZ that involves one of the protagonists in this story, Helen Kelly - president of the Combined Trade Unions. She is joined by John Barnett of South Pacific Picture who defends Peter Jackson. You can watch the interview there as well (no embed available).

The attached photos were sent in from a source of mine on the island nation. Very passionate people are involved here. Makes you wonder if things could turn ugly if it is announced that Warner Bros is in fact moving THE HOBBIT.

If the production does indeed move, it won't feel the same to me at all.

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Jim Dorey
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