Save the Hobbit

If The Hobbit moves overseas, there will be a massive loss of jobs in NZ. The 2,500 for the Hobbit itself is only the start. All the other productions will stop coming here, and I imagine would have a limited future.

But add onto that the lost tourism jobs and earnings. 1 in 10 tourists say the LOTR connection was a factor in choosing to come here. If Middle Earth moves to Ireland, we will lose much of that tourism.

The Herald on Sunday reports on the rallies you can go along to, to show your support for the film staying here. These are not anti-anyone rallies, but pro-Hobbit in NZ rallies.

12.30pm-2pm Monday

  • Auckland: Queen Elizabeth II Square (opposite Britomart)
  • Wellington: Civic Square
  • Christchurch: Cathedral Square
  • Hamilton: Garden Place
  • Matamata: The Gollum statue
  • Queenstown: The Village Green

I’m certainly attending the Wellington one. If you plan to attend, you can join the event on Facebook.

The HOS also covers the latest:

President of the New Zealand Council of Trade Helen Kelly told the she was not sorry for the dispute as it began as a simple request to negotiate conditions.

“I personally regret calling Peter Jackson a brat. That was not helpful,” said Kelly. “I shouldn’t have said that, because he is not a brat. He is clearly deeply hurt … and it’s not my style to usually get so personal.”

However, she believed most New Zealanders supported the right to collectively bargain.

God this Orewellian double-speak is getting annoying.A global boycott is not a simple request to negotiate. It is the last resort in such a negotiation – it is where you say we would rather this film never gets made at all, because the conditions on it are so bad. The irony being that the conditions are the best ever offered to NZ actors.

And secondly those actors who are members of the MEAA could always try and negotiate a collective contract on behalf of those members only.  What they were not allowed to do is negotiate on behalf of all the non members, and force them into becoming union members.

Back at the Armageddon Expo, Stargate Atlantis actor Torri Higginson told the crowd it would be “insane” if The Hobbit was not filmed in New Zealand. “If anyone knows him [Peter Jackson] tell him I’ll work for free,” said Higginson. “F*** the unions.”

I suspect many actors would work for free on the film. But Jackson will not only be paying good weekly rates, he is the first Producer to offer residuals to NZ actors. How the fuck the CTU ever decided to make him public enemy number one I don’t know.

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