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NZ March Reports – Hobbit already moving??

October 20, 2010 at 7:23 am by Calisuri  - 

With the news that the NZ Equity Meeting was canceled last night, we are now getting some reports from the ground. Below you will find two reports: One from a witness to the resulting technician march (with pictures!);  Another from a technician marching with some exclusive information. As a quick summary, the general consensus is that the meeting was canceled last night when it was realized the protest group greatly outnumbered those in the actor’s equity. However, the worst news comes from Jabes report:

We received news tonight that the Hobbit is essentially lost to NZ, but maybe some drastic act would help brew enough support to present a solid case to Warner/MGM

Thanks to Ringer Caras Galadhon and Ringer Jabes for sharing their reports! Click ‘continue’ to read them in their entirety.

NZ Technican Jabes:

I work for Weta Digi and was just at the technicians meeting, and subsequent march afterwards. Around 1200 technicians, filmmakers, actors and artists were on the streets of downtown wellington in opposition to the Actor’s Equity/MEAA boycott of the Hobbit in New Zealand. Many people, including Richard Taylor, Gino Acivedo, Jaime Beswarick, Allen Lee, John Howe, Phillipa Boyens, multiple New Zealand directors, and many others gave riveting speeches confirming that the NZ government is behind Peter Jackson and the rest of the NZ industry not represented by Actor’s Equity; ie, everyone sans 150 or so actors IN THE WHOLE COUNTRY. A meeting was meant to take place in Wellington tonight with Simon Whipp of MEAA in attendance. The meeting was canceled however, when it was discovered that more than 5 times the number of their entire NZ clientel were outside the door in opposition after only a 3 hour notice. We received news tonight that the Hobbit is essentially lost to NZ, but maybe some drastic act would help brew enough support to present a solid case to Warner/MGM. We’ll see in the next few days if our demonstration had any impact. Below is a link to an article about the event. I’m sure more will be coming soon. [Article]

Ringer Caras Galadhon:

It looks like the NZ film technician meeting TORn reported on moved into a (peaceful) public protest in the evening.
I’m currently in Wellington to do my PhD, and just before 7pm local time I started hearing shouting, chanting, cheering and honking outside my window. Not having been here for long, I assumed it was my first brush with rugby fans, but not long after I started to make out the words being chanted: “Down with unions!”, “Save our industry!” and “We want The Hobbit!”
A quick glance outside confirmed what I already suspected, so I grabbed my camera, ran down to the street, and started snapping photos.
It was a reasonably-sized crowd for a short-notice protest, and everyone seemed to be in excellent spirits. As far as I could tell, the spectators — drivers and pedestrians alike — were all for supporting the protesters. There were some great signs, including “Don’t Hobble The Hobbit,” “We Support PJ,” “Keep Hobbit in Hobbiton! (NZ)”, and “Ireland is Not Middle-Earth.”
The protesters themselves remained at the intersection for a good five or ten minutes after I got there, and I’m sure I’d been hearing them on and off through my window for about ten minutes previously. Eventually, they moved off, and it looked like they were headed in the direction of the Beehive and the rest of the Parliament buildings.

Photos from the march are located here

Posted in Events, Headlines, Hobbit Movie, Locations Sets, Make the Hobbit Happen, MGM, New Line Cinema, Other Events, Peter Jackson, Production, Richard Taylor, Studios, The Hobbit, Warner Bros. on October 20, 2010 by
NZ March Reports – Hobbit already moving?? | Discuss

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16 responses to “NZ March Reports – Hobbit already moving??”

  1. Wow, with all those people marching, it feels like a real battle taking place.

  2. Saita says:

    Really? I care! I don’t want the Hobbit to be made unless it’s made in NZ. And I don’t even live there!

  3. Anonymous says:

    What are you talking about? Everyone, other than you, cares about where it is made. I used to live in New Zealand (not anymore) and I can tell you that everything about that film depends on whether or not it films in NZ.

    Did you not watch the Lord of the Rings? Did you not notice those vast landscape shots with incredible snow capped mountains?

    Any unworldly person can say that it could be filmed anywhere with mountains, like Canada or Scotland, but the fact is, those countries have a very different geography from that of New Zealand. NZ looks all its own, very different from any place on Earth! And if you take that away, the films will suffer.

  4. Anonymous says:

    I think PJ may have enough stock footage for cinematography of Western ME. The only glimpse of Eastern ME in the trilogy was Lorien, Mordor, & Marshlands. I Don’t think those will appear in the new movies (Maybe Lorien for the White Council) Eastern ME: Mirkwood, Dale, Lonely Mountian can be shot anywhere else in the world because we have not seen it in the previous films. It should have it’s own distinct look anyway. Most of the other shots will be on blue screen in studio and can be done just about anywhere.
    If they do move the shooting outside of NZ the budget will obviously rise. I think PJ and co. are using a credible threat against the unions to reveal that the entire nation of NZ are behind him.

  5. Anonymous says:

    I agree that NZ has beautiful geography but it does not need to be exclusive to ME. Not sure if everyone noticed that in the movies some helicopter shots and panning shots were shown in reverse to give the illusion of diversity (especially with the mountain shots). Realistically I believe most people are going to want a mix of the new and the familiar. Mirkwood, Dale and Lonely Mountain should be something different yet familiar no matter where the footage is shot. They can piece geography together on digital screen to get any result they want and make it believable. I’m only stating for the case of cinematography which I greatly apriciated in FOTR.

  6. Anonymous says:

    Bahaha, dude you have no idea what you are talking about. The only time they would ever “reverse” something is when they needed it to match something else, like the foreground matching the background when they were doing a composite or things like that. Never did they “flip” the background to make it look more diverse, because all you would have is the exact same image with the exact same landscape except inverted and slightly odd shaped. Nice try though.

    And I know this because I lived in New Zealand, on the south island in Queenstown which is right in the heart of the “Epic” Southern mountains where they filmed the majority of the wide shots…..not to mention I’ve been to just about every spot (whether on accident or on purpose).
    Unless you have even been to New Zealand, plus the other places they have “planned” on shooting if it goes overseas, you wouldn’t know why it is so important to keep the film there. That country encompasses the very description of Middle Earth and everyone knows it.
    Sure we need diversity with scenes like Mirkwood but those types of things can be faked in the exact same way Fangorn Forest was faked……on a soundstage with a whole lot of really talented New Zealand artist created the environment.
    Now if they said they were going to shoot 85-90% of the film in NZ with a few scenes shot elsewhere, I’d be ok with that. But they are taking this whole project away from NZ, which means places like Hobbiton would not longer be the Hobbiton you know (which is a real place in NZ called Matamata) And thats totally unexceptable!

    Thats just one example!

    They had already talked about putting the town of Dale on Lake Wakatipu which is the lake that borders Queenstown! Which by the way, is friggin perfect for it!

    So you see, it is vitally important that it remains in New Zealand for continuity’s sake, if nothing else!!!

  7. Prisca Knotwise says:

    I disagree. I’ve been to NZ several times and I’m from Calgary – right next to the Alberta Rockies. Yes we have majestic mountains here but they’re bigger and older and they don’t look anything like the mountains in New Zealand. NZ has a look all its own, a freshness, a youthfulness and a GREEN-ness that can’t be matched elsewhere.

  8. Prisca Knotwise says:

    I disagree. I’ve been to NZ several times and I’m from Calgary – right next to the Alberta Rockies. Yes we have majestic mountains here but they’re bigger and older and they don’t look anything like the mountains in New Zealand. NZ has a look all its own, a freshness, a youthfulness and a GREEN-ness that can’t be matched elsewhere.

  9. zorro says:

    There are several locales which would suit the Hobbit just fine. While New Zealand is wonderful, if worst came to worst, it could be made on Tolkien’s home turf and the vicinity. I don’t believe that Tolkien ever stated that NZ was ME.

  10. Anonymous says:

    Just merely pointing out the editing tricks that can be used to save film and have us believe we are seeing something different. I was talking specifically about a single helicopter shot recycled differently in all three films. FOTR Gandalf escaping on Gwahair, Opening shot in TTT, and Lighting of the beacons in ROTK. Now if you weren’t from NZ, (which a majority of people aren’t) You won’t recognize the local scenery or necessarily identify it with NZ. Not to say you wouldn’t appreciate it, but one would not have that personal identity tied with it. You just accept that it is the Misty Mountains of Middle Earth, which is the ultimate goal. All I’m saying is that the wizards of Weta digital and other departments can make believable settings out of anything, anywhere with any footage (even stuff shot over ten years ago). It sucks that it will be pulled out of NZ because it is a beautiful country and many people there will miss another huge opportunity. I’m just saying that the quality of the film may not suffer as much as others believe it will if it is shot outside of NZ.

  11. Anonymous says:

    On second thought….just reading the post and sensing the amount of passion you have for NZ makes me realize that it’s not just the geography of the land that made the setting of Middle Earth so believable and beautiful. It is the passion of the people and maybe even the national pride that came through. Perhaps that is what more of the focus should be. I get it. The fact that, up until the release of the trilogy, the NZ film industry was relatively unknown and then PJ and Weta special effects came along and blew the doors off of Hollywood. They built something special and now its threatened. Like loosing a child. I get it.

  12. Shontyk says:

    new zealand is middle earth

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