WELLINGTON, New Zealand--(BUSINESS WIRE)--The final winners selected to join The Hobbit Fan Fellowship contest were treated to the ultimate celebration at their journey’s end—a sneak preview screening of the highly anticipated final film in Oscar winner Peter Jackson’s “The Hobbit” Trilogy and a private Q&A with the director and key members of his filmmaking team.
“The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies,” a production of New Line Cinema and Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Pictures (MGM), represents the end of the filmmaker’s 16-year journey to adapt the masterpieces by J.R.R. Tolkien—The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit—and the last chance for fans all over the world to see Middle-earth on the big screen. “The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies” is set for release worldwide on December 17, 2014, with select international territories releasing from December 10, 2014.
“We can’t think of any better way for these fans to cap off their spectacular journey through New Zealand than a screening with the man who shares their love for these timeless novels and has spent the better part of 16 years bringing them to the screen,” said Sue Kroll, President, Worldwide Marketing and International Distribution. “Thanks to our partners at Air New Zealand and Tourism New Zealand for joining with us to make this incredible experience possible for these dedicated fans, and, of course, to Peter and his team for sharing with them the wonder of this last trip to Middle-earth. We’re thrilled to celebrate Peter’s tremendous legacy in Middle-earth one last time.”
Kicked off at this year’s Comic-Con International to a crowd of nearly 7,000 screaming fans, The Hobbit Fan Fellowship contest drew more than 140,000 entrants from approximately 30 countries. The final winners, each invited to bring one guest, traveled to New Zealand for a five-day excursion across New Zealand’s North and South Islands to visit the real locations where Jackson brought Middle-earth to life in “The Hobbit” and “The Lord of the Rings” trilogies. Their dream adventure concluded with a celebration of the Fan Fellowship and the success of the contest at Jackson’s Park Road Post Production Ltd. in Wellington, where they were invited to be among the first in the world to see “The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies,” followed by a private Q&A with Jackson and key members of his filmmaking team.
The Hobbit Fan Fellowship Contest is a collaboration of Warner Bros. Pictures and its filmmaking partners New Line and MGM, as well as Air New Zealand—the official airline of Middle-earth—and Tourism New Zealand, the New Zealand tourism body responsible for hosting the fans in New Zealand (Newzealand.com).
Tourism New Zealand Chief Executive Kevin Bowler said The Hobbit Fan Fellowship has created a global conversation about Middle-earth, resulting in images of New Zealand being shown all around the world. “We’re thrilled to have hosted the fans in the real Middle-earth and experienced their reactions and excitement as they realize the fantasy of Middle-earth is in fact the reality of New Zealand,” Bowler stated. “While the films might be coming to an end and we are bidding farewell to our fans on this Fan Fellowship journey, for us Middle-earth lives on and is here for anyone to enjoy.”
Air New Zealand Chief Executive Officer Christopher Luxon says it’s been fantastic supporting The Hobbit Fan Fellowship. “Air New Zealand has been on a three-year journey, supporting “The Hobbit” films as the official airline of Middle-earth. One of the objectives of our partnership has been to raise the profile of Middle-earth as a destination and the Fellowship has helped us achieve that. The reaction of these incredibly enthusiastic fans at seeing Middle-earth for themselves has been exciting to watch and I hope through their journey we have encouraged more people to consider their own visit to New Zealand,” said Mr. Luxon.
About the Journey
Kicking off with a unique photo opportunity with one of Air New Zealand’s Hobbit-inspired Boeing 777-300ER aircraft, the Fan Fellowship traveled to the famous tourist destination of Rotorua, where they were welcomed with a Maori cultural performance and traditional hangi banquet; to the Hobbiton Movie Set in the Waikato region, near Matamata, for a feast and private tour of the picturesque shire; to Queenstown, the scene of countless battle scenes from “The Hobbit” Trilogy, and the majestic filming site for the Pillar of Kings sequence in “The Lord of the Rings” films; then on to Wellington to celebrate the end of their adventure with Jackson himself.
The Fan Fellowship experience can be followed online at www.tfsn.co/hobbitfanfellowship as moviegoers the world over prepare to journey to Middle-earth one last time when “The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies” hits theaters in December.
About the Film
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.
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. www.thehobbit.com #OneLastTime