WellingtonÕs Dominion newspaper had an interview with producer Barrie Osborne.There he talked about the hobbits, saying that although the public might recognise stars like Elijah Wood (Frodo) or Ian Holm (Bilbo), they might wonder about some of the others. Osborne revealed that the film would employ hobbit ÔdoublesÕ in the form of a group of people with a rare hormonal growth deficiency different from dwarfism.
“The doubles are pretty special,” said Osborne, “There are four or five of them..two from India, two from England, from Thailand.” They were not easy to find.
He went on to describe the hobbit ÔlookÕ Ð big ears, big feet, big smiles, curly hair Ð all helped by the prosthetics crews.
Each hobbit double is matched to a main actor.
Meanwhile, the ÔstarÕ hobbit actors can be shrunk using computer shrinking, high-rig filming and altered scale ratios.
October the 11th marked the first day of filming, in the Mt. Victoria town belt in Wellington. Filming was scheduled to continue until Christmas next year.
At times work was interrupted by driving rain. Osborne took time to discuss Peter JacksonÕs intention to stick very closely to JRRTÕs story. He also revealed that the hobbits were on their way to film in Bree next. Their scenes at the Ômerry old pubÕ would be filmed in an exterior set in Wellington somewhere, and an interior set in the studio.
A production crew of 400 was involved; travel would be necessary. For the extras, they were told to hold next week clear of commitments when they came for their first filming. Osborne let slip that there might be some orcs around in the coming week.
Before this project, Osborne was the producer for Face/Off and the Matrix, as well as being credited on films such as The Godfather II, All the PresidentÕs Men, The Big Chill, Apocalypse Now, Who Framed Roger Rabbit and Good Morning Vietnam.
Thanks to Nanoo-x for the scoop!