Peter Jackson and his team released the fifth production video for “The Hobbit,” which is currently being filmed in New Zealand. In it, Jackson and his team cover the logistics of location filming for the two-movie adaptation of J.R.R. Tolkien’s novel.
For fans of “The Lord of the Rings,” the twelve-minute video is, as Entertainment Weekly noted Dec. 27, a nostalgic and welcomed trip home to Hobbiton and some of the scenic splendors of New Zealand as Middle Earth.
“We’ve been traveling pretty much the length and breadth of New Zealand shooting locations for ‘The Hobbit,’” Jackson said in the video. “It’s been great to get outside. It’s been great to get that texture of Middle Earth into the movie after many, many weeks of shooting in the studio.”
The production video – part of The Hobbit Blog – notes a primary goal of location shooting is to showcase the beauty of New Zealand. The decision not only reflects the locale used for “The Lord of the Rings” trilogy, but responds to audience’s appreciation to those films’ settings.
Watch Peter Jackson’s fifth production video on “The Hobbit,” watch first trailer for “The Hobbit” or see the trailer’s screenshots.
Glenn Shaw, Transport Manager, made note of the challenges of the shooting. In a lighthearted comment, he called the location filming represented in the video the biggest logistical move in the cinematic history.
According to the video, filming on location for “The Hobbit” involved a fleet of close to 140 vehicles, 500 crew from the main unit, and 200 second-unit crew members. Adding to the complexity of location shooting are those things that need to be provided in terms of support: electricity, food and water, bathrooms and toilet paper, weather cover, heating and cooling, and beer. They established a mini-city for location filming, all on the space of two football fields.
The production video then covers some of the magic in creating Hobbiton, with both current and archival footage. Viewers are treated to the glimpses of the familiar setting that remind us of Jackson’s eye for New Zealand’s beauty and for the Shire’s details.
And for “The Hobbit” movies Hobbiton has been created “for real,” rebuilding the set out of permanent materials. That way, visitors to the Hobbiton Movie Set and Farm Tours can better enjoy the immersive world created for the films.
Of course, the joy in such production video isn’t merely in the behind-the-scenes details, but in catching the atmosphere on the set and seeing the cast and crew returning to familiar stomping grounds, beloved characters and the Middle Earth tales.
In this installment, Jackson is obviously happy to return to Hobbiton – standing in for the fans as he talks about coming back to a place he never thought he’d see again. Elijah Wood, who returns as Frodo, makes an appearance to talk about his reaction to “There and Back Again” – a world he first visited 11 years ago, when he was 19.
Overall, this production video comes across as a picturesque postcard for New Zealand as much as a look at “The Hobbit.” And it’s just the kind of postcard “The Hobbit” fans are glad to receive over the Christmas holidays, and New Zealand on a list of must-see locations for movie lovers.
Based on the work of J.R.R. Tolkien, “The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey” is the first of two movies that serve as a prequel to “The Lord of the Rings” trilogy. The movies will star many from the trilogy: Ian McKellen, Andy Serkis, Orlando Bloom, Hugo Weaving, Cate Blanchett and Christopher Lee. Martin Freeman will play the title role of Bilbo Baggins, and the new cast includes Richard Armitage and Graham McTavish.
“The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey” will be released, in 3D, Dec. 14, 2012. “The Hobbit: There and Back Again” will be released Dec. 13, 2013.
Pittsburgh movie fans interested in seeing “The Hobbit” trailer with “The Adventures of Tintin,” which opened Dec. 21, can see them both at the AMC Loews Waterfront 22, SouthSide Works Cinema and Waterworks Cinema 10. Look for locations and movie tickets available for online purchase at Fandango.
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