The set of The Hobbit may be full of celebrity actors and filmmakers, but David Gell from Llanfairfechan, Wales is the star of the show in his mother’s eyes. Gell was one of hundreds of chefs who auditioned to cook for the cast and crew of The Hobbit films, and one of the few to score the job.
“He’s a brilliant chef,” Carol, his mother, told The North Wales Weekly News. “He told me it is absolutely amazing. He’s really busy. They open the film set at about 5:00am and finish around 3:30pm.
“He’s working 14 hours a day, so he’s quite tired, but thoroughly enjoying it.”
In Peter Jackson’s most recent video production diary, Ian McKellen said, “The catering on this movie has been sensational.” Billie Lusk, one of the on-set caterers described the large amounts of food that were prepared each day, including “100 (at least) kilos of meat every day.” And David Gell works hard to make sure that the food doesn’t go to waste. Carol explained, “Any excess food they have, he’s taking it to homeless shelters. That was one of the reasons he went out there, to do things for others. We’re all very proud of him.”
Liam Simone, owner of The Beach Hut café in Llanfairfechan where Gell used to work, sang his praises. “He’s got loads of ideas and he’s catered for big functions so it won’t be a problem for him,” he said. “I’m chuffed for him; he’s a really good chef, he’s really talented, and has a great passion for food. I was initially quite shocked!”
At The Beach Hut, David specialized in vegan and vegetarian food, which will serve him well as he cooks for vegetarians Ian McKellen, Martin Freeman, and Andy Serkis on The Hobbit.