On December 15, 2020, WETA Workshop opened up Unleashed, a hybrid entertainment experience in Auckland that is part film set and part creative workshop. This project started as an idea about 3 years ago, but it was 18 months ago when they landed on the concept that would become Unleashed – A Fantastical Film FX Experience. WETA took over an entire floor at the SkyCity entertainment precinct in Auckland, at the foot of the Sky Tower. This finally gives WETA the space to grow and flesh out what they began with the WETA Cave and the Window on the Workshop experience they have in Wellington.
Upon entering, guests are greeted by Jeff, head of security and health and safety; who happens to be an animatronic character, voiced by Mark Hadlow, with 40 points of articulation. Guests will go on a 90-minute immersive journey, through several rooms that aren’t always what they appear to be. Jeff will get you started on your adventure to learn about the creation of three original films in the Fantasy, Horror and Science Fiction genres. Each room will offer hands-on, interactive activities, such as sculpting, making armor, or tracing creatures. The concept is to show the creative process involved in filmmaking from the beginning through the final stages before release, and leave the guests inspired to take that creativity home with them.
In addition to being a fun day tour experience for movie fans and tourists, this facility is big enough to be an event venue, a themed event venue at that: from small groups of 15 or more for things like Birthday or Anniversary parties, all the way up to large corporate or professional groups. There is room for receptions up to 700 people, or banquets of 300. And to add atmosphere, you can include an SFX make-up demo, hands-on workshops, guest speakers, and Middle-earth themed feasts. Makes one wonder if they will have space for some 20th anniversary partying next December…?
For details on where to find WETA Workshop Unleashed and all of their various tours and venue options, simply head over to WETA Workshop Unleashed
TheOneRing.net is excited to announce an official Moot at the Weta Cave in Wellington this Thursday from 3 – 5 p.m. TORn founder Erica Challis, known as Tehanu, will be on hand to talk with Tolkien enthusiasts; Also in town and at the event will be Larry D. Curtis (MrCere), traveling writer who is canvasing New Zealand as the one-year countdown for The Hobbit begins. Challis is an author and her unique story and relationship with the makers of The Lord of the Rings films has been told in newspapers and books around the globe. Curtis is a journalist and speaks about LOTR and The Hobbit at popular-culture conventions around the U.S. The event is free and will be casual and fun so don’t miss it! Details about where the Cave is located and how you can get there can be found right here.
Weta is pleased to host one of the world’s most acclaimed Tolkien illustrators and designers, John Howe, for a book signing at the Weta Cave. Currently visiting Weta Workshop, John Howe was of course also one of the principal designers on Peter Jackson’s The Lord Of The Rings. John Howe will be signing two of his fantastic volumes and a postcard. Continue reading “John Howe book signing at the Weta Cave in Wellington”
The March 20th edition of the WETA Newsletter mentions TORN and our ‘Cruise to Middle-earth’ vacation we posted about earlier in the year. Ringers on the cruise stopped by the WETA Cave for a very special treat. From the newsletter: “Our friends from T.O.R.N visit the Weta Cave – On a Cruise To Middle-Earth, a large group of Tolkien fans from TheOneRing.Net came to visit us. It was a real pleasure to have you here and to show you around. It takes a special kind of fan to travel all the way to little New Zealand. In the photo you also see Richard Taylor, Tania Rodger and Daniel Falconer who hosted the group on their visit.” >wetanz.com