SAN DIEGO, July 28, 2014 /CNW/ - New Zealand is about to become the talk of fantasy enthusiasts around the world, with the call going out globally to find fans eager to take an ultimate Middle-earth journey to New Zealand.
Gearing up for the December 17, 2014, release of The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies, Tourism New Zealand and Air New Zealand, in conjunction with New Line Cinema, Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Pictures and Warner Bros. Pictures, yesterday announced The Hobbit Fan Fellowship Contest before 6,500 fans at Comic-Con International, an entertainment and comic convention in San Diego.
The contest will decide 75 lucky winners who can each take a friend to New Zealand flying with Air New Zealand, the airline to Middle-earth. They will spend a week journeying to famous filming locations and tourist hotspots throughout New Zealand, culminating in the ultimate experience for every Hobbit fan - a private screening of the final film with Sir Peter Jackson himself.
Fans were invited to enter in a personal video from Sir Peter. The first two winners were chosen from the Comic-Con crowd - Kris McMeans, 25, from Austin, TX and Morgan Burgener, 18, from San Diego, CA.
McMeans, who was in line overnight to get into the Hall H panel, said she has wanted to go to New Zealand for years. "This is going to be one of the most amazing experiences of my life. Ever since I was 12 years old I wanted to go to Middle-earth, and now New Zealand has become Middle-earth. Thanks to Peter Jackson bringing the books to life, now we can travel Middle-earth."
Contest winners will land in Auckland, the "City of Sails," rated the third most liveable city in the world, before embarking on a specially designed itinerary to recognizable 'filmscapes' -the highlight being a special visit to Hobbiton, the famous movie set at the heart of both The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit Trilogies.
Now New Zealand's fastest growing tourist attraction, Hobbiton is nestled in a working sheep farm near the small town of Matamata in the Waikato region. Fans will enjoy a private tour through the 12-acre site, with a close-up look at the 44 Hobbit homes.
The Hobbit Fan Fellowship will also visit other key film sites throughout New Zealand's Middle-earth chosen by Sir Peter Jackson for his epic trilogies and experience those locations tourist attractions. Tourism New Zealand says this proves the stunning backdrops featured throughout both trilogies are not just fantasy but real places that travelers can explore and enjoy.
The journey will end in Wellington for the ultimate film fan's dream - a private screening of the final film, The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies, with Sir Peter Jackson. Fans will meet up with the famous director in his home town "Wellywood," New Zealand's capital city, where Sir Peter has based his film empire and which has now become a must-stop for film fans visiting Middle-earth.
For more information on The Hobbit Fan Fellowship Contest visit TheHobbitFanContest.com
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About The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies
Directed by Peter Jackson, The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies features a screenplay by Fran Walsh & Philippa Boyens & Peter Jackson & Guillermo del Toro, based on the novel by J.R.R. Tolkien. Jackson also produced the film, together with Carolynne Cunningham, Zane Weiner and Fran Walsh. The executive producers are Alan Horn, Toby Emmerich, Ken Kamins and Carolyn Blackwood, with Philippa Boyens and Eileen Moran serving as co-producers. Production took place at Jackson's own facilities in Miramar, Wellington, and on location around New Zealand. Post production took place at Park Road Post Production in Wellington.
New Line Cinema and Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Pictures Present a Wingnut Films Production, The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies. As with the first two films in the Trilogy, The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey and The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug, the final film is a production of New Line Cinema and Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Pictures (MGM), with New Line managing production. Warner Bros. Pictures is handling worldwide theatrical distribution, with select international territories as well as all international television distribution being handled by MGM.
Video with caption: "Video: Sir Peter Jackson invites fans to enter The Hobbit Fan Fellowship Contest". Video available at: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sufSvJnqxk4&feature=youtu.be
Image with caption: "Fans will visit the famous party tree set in The Shire at Hobbiton, New Zealand. (CNW Group/Tourism New Zealand)". Image available at: http://photos.newswire.ca/images/download/20140728_C8866_PHOTO_EN_42270.jpg
Image with caption: "The first two winners of The Hobbit Fan Fellowship Contest, Kris McMeans from Austin, Texas (left) and Morgan Burgener from San Diego, California. (CNW Group/Tourism New Zealand)". Image available at: http://photos.newswire.ca/images/download/20140728_C8866_PHOTO_EN_42268.jpg
SOURCE: Tourism New Zealand
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