Gandalf, Gollum and Bilbo Baggins may be on their way to England as New Zealand looks set to lose the filming of The Hobbit movies.
Financial backers Warner Brothers have begun making arrangements to shift the production to another country, director Peter Jackson warned.
Although there was no indication of where the two film prequel to the Lord Of The Rings trilogy might be moved, a Warners executive has been assessing locatins in England used for the Harry Potter series.
Jackson’s production company, Wingnut Films, and the actors’ union Equity have been at loggerheads over pay deals for actors in the $500 million (£320 million) 3D films. Shooting is due to begin in February.
‘Warners are coming to New Zealand next week to make arrangements to move the production offshore,’ Wingnut said. ‘It appears we cannot make films in our own country.’ Production of The Hobbit was given the green light by Warners at the weekend.
Source: Metro 22nd October 2010