From: Heather

by Alan Samson


Filming the LORD OF THE RINGS trilogy got under way in Wellington’s town belt yesterday, and some early morning strollers complained of not having quite the freedom of passage they were used to.

A woman also complained of tree branches being cut as film crews moved in with port-a-lounges, port-a-loos and tents being erected ‘as if for a circus’.

Most, however, were happy to slightly deviate where necessary along the ample walkways still available.

Film publicist Claire Raskind said she was not aware of any problems, and the only hindrance to walkers was in the immediate area of shooting.

Wellington City Council spokesman Richard MacLean appealed for people to be patient, especially near the track where filming was expected to take five days.

“We would hope that people would realise this is a very big deal,” Mr MacLean said. “If we do this right, there is every chance of more (film) work for Wellington. If a security guard asks someone not to interrupt filming, I would hope they would understand.”

Of the complaint about trees being damaged, Mr MacLean said that pines and macrocarpas in the area were not protected and were not expected to be badly affected.

“We have to give them a certain leeway in easing their passage.”