NZ to remain Middle Earth

has just announced the two Hobbit movies will be produced in New Zealand, and have at least one world première here. Details of the deal are:

  • Government will tomorrow introduce a bill to clarify law on contractors for the film industry (only)
  • A widening of the criteria for major film tax rebates which will come up at US$7.5m per film
  • Govt to commit US$10m towards marketing of the films, in exchange for NZ tourism information being included in materials such as DVDs
  • Govt and Warners to work together to promote NZ as a film production location and a tourist destination.

There is no way these concessions would have been necessary if it were not for the damage caused by the union organised global boycott. The decision has been made to film them here and no one was suggesting that was being reconsidered.

The US$500 million cost of producing the films will now largely be spent in New Zealand, and should be a useful contribution to economic growth.

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