From the Weta Newsletter: Some snippets

Production has commenced in Wellington, New Zealand, on “The Hobbit,” filmmaker Peter Jackson’s two film adaptation of J.R.R. Tolkien’s widely read masterpiece.


Screen plays: Fran Walsh, Philippa Boyens, Guillermo del Toro and Peter Jackson


Producers: Peter Jackson and Fran Walsh, alongside Carolynne Cunningham.


Executive producers: Ken Kamins and Zane Weiner, with Philippa Boyens as co-producer.


Director of Photography: Andrew Lesnie


Production Designer: Dan Hennah


Conceptual Designers: Alan Lee and John Howe


Composer: Howard Shore


Make-up and hair designer: Peter King


Costumes: Ann Maskrey and Richard Taylor


Taylor is also overseeing the design and production of weaponry, armour and prosthetics which are once again being made by the award winning Weta Workshop.


Visual effects supervisor: Joe Letteri


The Oscar-winning, critically acclaimed “The Lord of the Rings” trilogy, also from the production team of Jackson and Walsh, grossed nearly $3 billion worldwide at the box office. In 2003, “The Return of the King” swept the Academy Awards, winning all of the 11 categories in which it was nominated, including Best Picture – the first ever Best Picture win for a fantasy film. The trilogy’s production was also unprecedented at the time.


“The Hobbit” films are co-produced by New Line Cinema and MGM, with New Line managing production. Warner Bros Pictures is handling worldwide theatrical distribution, with select international territories as well as all international television licensing being handled by MGM. The two films are planned for release in late 2012 and 2013, respectively.


As mentioned before on this blog, the films will be shot consecutively in digital 3D using the latest camera and stereo technology. Filming will take place at Stone Street Studios, Wellington, and on location around New Zealand.


Weta has further announced that there is now an official blog on the movies being made which can be found here. And here is the Official facebook fan page.


And last but not least, a few additions to the cast: Jeffrey Thomas and Mike Mizrahi join the cast as Dwarf Kings Thror and Thrain, respectively. Further casting announcements are expected.


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