From: Otogo Daily Times

Hobbits taking Christmas off

By Kerry Williamson

Even hobbits take a holiday over Christmas.

Filming of the $360 million Lord of the Rings movie trilogy – based on the novels by J. R. R Tolkien and directed by Wellington’s Peter Jackson – has been taking place in and around Queenstown during the past month.

However, filming will break next week for Christmas and will not continue at the Southern Lakes until the middle of next year.

Film crews spent much of this week shooting scenes near Glenorchy. Scenes have also been shot near Te Anau, Tarras and Queenstown.

Publicist Claire Raskind said filming had gone well, despite the setbacks suffered when several sets were washed away during last month’s record rainfall and flooding.

Good weather had allowed crews to catch up on time lost during the floods, she said.

More than 400 people have been employed by the Lord of the Rings producers since filming began in Wellington several months ago.

Lead actors Elijah Wood, Sir Ian McKellen, Sean Bean and Viggo Mortenson have all spent time in the Southern Lakes during filming.