11 October 1999
“Hobbits loose in woods above Capital ~ By Tom Cardy
Part of Mt Victoria's Town Belt became a dense wood and a walking track for hobbits as filming began on The Lord Of The Rings today.
Producer Tim Sanders said the bush around Mt Victoria was ideal for a scene for the $360 million epic, which will be filmed at various locations around the country. Extra trees were taken in to make Mt Victoria's bush denser.
"We're pretty excited. It's been a long time in preparation - 2 1/2 years," he said. Depending on the weather, filming on Mt Victoria would continue for the next few days.
Film publicist Claire Raskind said about 140 crew were involved today, filming a scene with hobbits walking through the woods, including one of the film's stars, Elijah Wood, who plays the hobbit Frodo.
"We have some hobbits working today and that's pretty much it," she said.
The Post was not allowed on the set, but was allowed to look down from Alexandra Rd at the top of Mt Victoria where several equipment trucks and a wind machine were parked.
Film crew with several large lights could be seen hidden in the bush down a steep bank, but no sign of anyone with big hairy feet.
The only hint as to what audiences may see on film was a black horse wearing a medieval-style saddle and armour in the Mt Victoria Bowling Club carpark, with another two horses. Cast, crew and equipment were ferried up into the steep hill tracks using four and six-wheel motor
cycles.” ~ Wellington Evening Post
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