by Michael dEstries
Categories: Film/TV
Tags: .

Believe me when I say there is no place on earth that could do justice to the backdrop needed (aka, Middle Earth) for the “The Hobbit” like New Zealand. It’s beyond gorgeous and represent an unspoiled, raw view of nature that consistently lands it in the “Top Places To Go Before You Bite It” category.

So it’s rather a shame that disputes between Warner Bros and the NZ actors’ union is forcing considerations of alternative locations. In fact, Fran Walsh, the wife of “Lord Of The Rings” director Peter Jackson, says that the studio is now scouting locations in the UK.

“They have people in the UK taking location photos,” the Kiwi film producer told Radio New Zealand. “They’ve got a huge studio there that they own that Harry Potter have vacated, the ex-Rolls Royce factory. They say it would be perfect for us.”

Screw that. There isn’t enough digital computer magic in the world to replicate the beauty that is New Zealand — and if there is, I’d sure as hell prefer the real stuff over the 1 and 0s — especially in light of all the people moaning after watching “Avatar” about how earth is so devoid of comparable scenery.  Here’s to hoping Jackson and Co. work it out with the unions. Mother Nature deserves her closeup — and New Zealand is her best side.

About Michael dEstries

Michael has been blogging since 2005 on issues such as sustainability, renewable energy, philanthropy, and healthy living. He regularly contributes to a slew of publications, as well as consulting with companies looking to make an impact using the web and social media. He lives in Ithaca, NY with his family on an apple farm.

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  • Max Stone

    We’d be more than happy to welcome Peter Jackson and the Hobbit crew to England. Play the bastard union’s bluff and come film here!

  • Chris H.


    I spent a month in NZ (South Island) in 2005, and I have to agree that it has some of the most spectacular scenery that I’ve ever seen. The drive down the west coast from Hokitika, past the Franz-Josef & Fox glaciers, through Mount Aspiring national park to Wanaka, and on to Te Anau and Milford Sound, was just an amazing experience that will be etched in my memory for ever.

    I’ve also spent time in the Lake District in the NW of England, and although the scenery there is impressive (in the right weather conditions), it pales in comparison to NZ.

    I would imagine that Warner Bros. are just using the threat as a negotiating strategy with the actor’s union.

  • mister jingles

    new zealand is unique but the principal actors are british – it would be comfortable for aged actors sir ian mckellen and christopher lee!