New Zealand has been chosen by Amazon as the shooting location of its eagerly-anticipated Lord of the Rings series that’s already entered pre-production. With much of Peter Jackson’s feature films being shot in New Zealand, fans can expect to see more of the beautiful scenery they’ve come to know and love in the movies. The BBC reported that the Amazon team wants to tap into the same success enjoyed by the movies and that filming on the new show will start soon. It’s expected to be one of the most expensive series ever made, with a staggering budget of “at least” $1 billion. Yes. That’s billion with a B.
During the creation of Jackson’s movies, New Zealand enjoyed an economic boost in both income and jobs, with significant funds being generated from a surge in the tourism industry. Movie sets such as Hobbiton, home to characters Bilbo and Frodo Baggins, became firm favorites with Tolkien tourists. Now, with the bank account of Jeff Besoz behind the new Lord of the Rings production, it’s likely that the country will enjoy its second financial boom courtesy of J.R.R Tolkien’s Middle Earth. Phil Twyford, Economic Development Minister of New Zealand, said that Amazon’s decision will be beneficial for the country, and will also attract “significant overseas investment.”
The new Lord of the Rings show, the rights to which Amazon secured some two years ago, will be a prequel to the initial installment of the Lord of the Rings, The Fellowship of the Ring.
Amazon announced Tuesday this week that pre-production was already underway and shooting will begin in the coming months. An Amazon spokesperson shared more details with the press.
“As we searched for the location in which we could bring to life the primordial beauty of the Second Age of Middle-earth, we knew we needed to find somewhere majestic, with pristine coasts, forests, and mountains.”
Variety reported that executive producers of the project, J.D. Payne and Patrick McKay, also recognized New Zealand as “a home to world-class sets, studios, and highly skilled and experienced craftspeople and other staff.”
Recent reports don’t comment on whether fans will see familiar faces from Jackson’s movies appearing in Amazon’s show, although as per The Inquisitr article couple months ago, it is confirmed that Orlando Bloom will not be taking up his role as Legolas in the new series. Fans will have to sit tight until the full cast is revealed.