“The Hobbit” Production Stays In New Zealand. “The Hobbit” stays in New Zealand. Prime Minister John Key has announced that the negotiation with Warner Bros executives has been successful. The film producers originally threatened to take the filming of the $500 million film project outside the country after acting unions complained of unfair practices. Earlier this week, thousands of New Zealanders protested outside the streets to convince the producers not to take the Peter Jackson flick outside. Key has first met with the Warner Bros. executives, but the meeting ended with no resolution as to the film’s production location. After two days of talk, the filmmakers have now secured an agreement to have the “Lord of the Rings” prequel shot in the country in exchange for additional tax rebates. According to Deadline Hollywood, Warner Bros was granted up to an extra $7.5 million tax rebate for movie, subject to the success of the films. The NZ government will also offset $10 million of Warner Bros’ marketing costs, and it will host one of the world premieres of the “Hobbit” movies. The government and the film company also agreed to work together in a “long-term strategic partnership” to promote the country as both a film production and tourism destination. NZ will be introducing a legislation to clarify the distinction between independent contractors and employees as it relates to the film industry only. The two-part sequel is set to begin production in February.
Christopher Lee has been ordered to pay $960,000 to an artist for the DVD cover art he did. A Spanish court ruled that “Lord of the Rings” star did not properly pay for Gerardo Moreno’s work on his 1998 film “Jinnah.”
Moreno sued the 87-year-old actor, his official website, and the production company The Quaid Project in Burgos, Spain. He claimed he designed and drew the cover for the film’s DVD, which was released in 2004, after being hired by Lee’s agent and son-in-law Juan Aneiros with Lee and the film producers’ consent. He had received payment for the digital illustration of the DVD cover and was later asked to design more content, including interactive menus and an informative book. He alleged that he did not receive any further payments for the work. The judge presiding over the case ordered Lee’s assets to be frozen until Moreno receives 710,000 euros or around $960,000. Lee and the other defendants were not in court during the ruling.
As this Spider-Man tale opens, the audience sees New York City “on fire and in ruins” as “a section of the Brooklyn Bridge ascends with Mary Jane bound and dangling helplessly from the bridge.” Soon thereafter, a new villainess called Arachne flies into the picture spinning her own deadly trap, and as Spider-Man battles all kinds of criminals he’s swinging right over the audience. It sounds like the 3-D opening for the next “Spider-Man” sequel, and even though this superhero story is filled with Hollywood-style special effects, it is instead a glimpse from a Continue reading →