Amazon has decided to move filming of the second season of The Lord of the Rings to the UK. A severe blow to New Zealand, which has long been considered “Middle-earth” and which has benefited from movie tourism.
Since the release of the first part of the Lord of the Rings trilogy, New Zealand has established itself as a must-visit destination for all fans of the world of Tolkien. All the films of the saga, as well as the films of the Hobbit trilogy, were shot in its plains and mountains and brought windfall tourist gains to the archipelago. Amazon has also chosen New Zealand to film its series based on the previous author’s. But after one season, the digital giant decided to move filming to the UK.
“We want to thank the people and government of New Zealand for providing an amazing setting for The Lord of the Rings series to begin this epic journey,” said Vernon Sanders, Vice President of Amazon Studios. For New Zealand, the news is a blow. The archipelago has particularly relied on the series’ launch on Amazon Prime, scheduled for September 2022, to revive tourism.
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“This is a huge missed opportunity for New Zealand,” New Zealand Member of Parliament and opposition spokesperson Todd McClay expressed regret. Economic Development Minister Stuart Nash said ” Disappointed “. Last April, he was excited that the series was the most expensive production ever. Amazon spent NZ$660 million (358 million euros) filming the series. The state was to participate in 25% of this budget (or 89.5 million euros), but will eventually pay 20% of the amount due to the transfer. Every year, before the pandemic, millions of tourists traveled to see the hobbit village. The ambition was to become the world leader in digital special effects.
The Lord of the Rings series will take place several thousand years before the Peter Jackson trilogy. It “drowns its viewers into the heart of a time when great powers emerged, glorious kingdoms fell into ruin, where unlikely heroes asserted their worth, and where all hope lies in the faintest of opportunity. And where Tolkien’s greatest villain imagines threatens to spread his darkness over the entire world,” the summary reveals.
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