Tourism New Zealand told reporters at the Trenz conference in Queenstown that they are very close to signing a deal with Hobbit filmmaking entities Warner Brothers and Wingnut Films.
Chief executive Kevin Bowler said, “We are really optimistic about how The Hobbit will elevate New Zealand’s promotion overseas, as did Lord of the Rings 12 years ago.” In fact, New Zealand businesses continue to be bolstered by Lord of the Rings fans. “I think The Hobbit is going to be that and more. We learned a lot of lessons from Lord of the Rings and we are doing everything we did back then plus some more.”
The deal with the filmmakers will allow some of the intellectual property from The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey and The Hobbit: There and Back Again to be shared to promote New Zealand as a travel destination.
The first of the two films will be released on December 14, 2012.