The Hobbit’s second unit has been spotted filming on Treble Cone, in the Matukituki Valley. Belinda Lee Hope, who is the unit manager, told the Otago Daily Times that the second unit had been split into two camps for a time, and would not confirm whether Andy Serkis was present. She did mention that the crew was enjoying their time in Wanaka, adding, “It is great. It is a perfect day. And all the local helicopter companies have been great.”
When Otago Daily Times journalist Marjorie Cook visited, she guessed that there were about 250 crew members, 40 trucks, and 40 other vehicles at the camp. She saw four Queenstown-based helicopters, and described their activity. “On helicopter ferried a large box into the mountains on a strop, another hovered over Twin Falls and two more were hovering over the peak of Treble Cone,” she said.
Publicist Ceris Price also raved about the “support from local people” saying, “They have all been very co-operative. We are very grateful for that. And it is a very beautiful area. We love filming in that country and showing it off.” Price expected that filming would be finished by today, but would not comment as to the second unit’s next location.
I can’t help but muse about possible locations from The Hobbit that they could have been filming. We don’t know much about what they were shooting, but we do know that it was a mountain, so that leads me to three possible conclusions. It could be the mountain cave where Bilbo, Gandalf, and the dwarves find the trolls’ horde or it could be the location of the eagles’ eyries. It is also possible that the location is in some way a stand-in for the Lonely Mountain itself. I guess we’ll have to wait to find out!