To say Okoroire, with its hot springs, motel, shop and golf course, is a long way from Hollywood is one of the bigger understatements you could make. But courtesy of the army, the tiny Waikato settlement is now a step closer to the silver screen. An undisclosed farm property is the site of the set for director Peter Jackson’s “Lord of the Rings”. The film’s makers are increasingly coy about letting the public know where the development work is being carried out.
The hive of excavation is buried in a farm valley not visible from any road. The farm’s owner has been sworn to secrecy.Work has been going on for nearly a month, but Okoroire locals are looking forward to the actual filming, which will be a boon for the hospitality industry.