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First images of the DALE film set?

March 22, 2012 at 4:45 pm by greendragon  - 

Our friends at have exclusive new images posted on their site!  An anonymous source sent them photos which supposedly show the set for Dale.  The pictures show tall structures and elaborate stonework; you can check out the images here.  A translation of the page follows after the break – read no further if you want to stay spoiler free!

Here’s what the folks at say:

As already reported in January, Peter Jackson’s production company 3 Foot 7 Ltd. has rented a 76 acre site on the edge of Wellington, for eight weeks, to shoot scenes for The Hobbit.  It was unknown what exactly would be built there – until now!  We have the first, exclusive photos from the elaborate set of the town of Dale!

These photos, which come from an anonymous source and were taken in the middle of February, show the structure of Dale, seemingly before the devastating attack of the dragon Smaug.  The land on the point of the Miramar Peninsula actually belongs to the New Zealand Ministry of Defense, but for many years it has not been used for military purposes.  The location is ideal for Peter Jackson and his crew, because it is surrounded by countryside but is only about five minutes by car from Weta Workshop and Stone Street Studios.

According to the City of Wellington, approximately 60 shipping containers were brought to the site, as a support for the roughly nine meter high set.  This month the shoot (totalling eight weeks) should begin.  According to the city council, during this time approx. 600 film crew will be working on the site daily, from 4am to 10pm.  In addition, each day about 500 vehicles will be driving to the set.  Following the application to the city, the area’s residents (Akaroa Drive and Maupuia Road) were informed via email as to what would be happening.

The town of Dale was a kingdom of the Northmen, in the shadow of the mountain Erebor.  Dale was a very wealthy town, with golden bells and many industries, whose wares were exported far and wide to the South and East of Middle-earth.  During the reign of Prince Girion in the year 2770 of the Third Age, the city was attacked by the dragon Smaug and left in rubble and ash.  Girion was killed in this attack.  Many years later, Bilbo and the dwarves met Girion’s heir Bard, who dreamt of rebuilding the city.

Photo captions:

Structure of the set of Dale.

The red roof tiles seem almost mediterranean.

Archways, doors and arched windows in Romanesque style.

Dale extends over several levels.

The set is supported by shipping containers.

Is this perhaps one of the bell towers of the town?

The unfinished battlements of Dale.

Plywood is the preferred building material on set.

A set bridge or access way is built.

A finished piece of wall with round battlements.

The set of Dale.

In this view one can clearly see the different levels.

Back view of Dale and the bridge.

A Dale building and a staircase in the building.

Posted in Headlines, Hobbit Movie, Locations Sets, Production, Rumors Spy News, The Hobbit on March 22, 2012 by
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2 responses to “First images of the DALE film set?”

  1. Guest_bh says:

    Is that supposed to be Dale before …. *SPOILER*
    *SPOILER* …

    … Smaug destroyed it?
    “The rotting piles of a greater town could still be seen along the shores when the waters sank in a drought.” – CHAPTER X

    “…they could see in the wide valley shadowed by the Mountain’s arms the grey ruins of ancient houses, towers, and walls.
    ‘There lies all that is left of Dale,’ said Balin.” – CHAPTER XI

    Otherwise you wouldn’t see much but ruins.

  2. Bill says:

    Can’t really figure out the reason for the red tile roofs. They don’t seem to fit with the landscape, the aesthetic of the LOTR trilogy, or the book. Where did the red clay come from? Is there red clay around the river in the movie? I’m probably coming across as nit-picky, but I just don’t ‘get’ the artistic decision.

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