The History of the Hobbiton Set

Hobbiton being built for the LOTR filmsHobbiton being built for the LOTR filmsMSN's "Getaway" recently posted a great online video featuring the "real" Hobbiton on New Zealand's North Island.  It's rather interesting to hear the story of how Dean Alexander's sheep farming land became the real-world location for Middle-earth's Hobbiton. Here's a bit more about it:

The Alexander family knew nothing about Lord of the Rings but they soon learnt. Their property has the three main elements the makers were searching for: a lake, a big tree and a field.

Construction began in March 1999 and filming commenced in December that year and continued for three months. It was all a mammoth task.

The New Zealand Army was contracted to build a 1.5km road into the site. Diggers, bulldozers, loaders, trucks, rollers, graders and other heavy machinery were all utilised.

Barberry hedges and trees were brought in and nurtured throughout winter.

Thirty-seven hobbit holes were created with untreated timber, ply and polystyrene.

The mill and double-arch bridge were built from scaffolding, ply and polystyrene, then glued and painted.

Thatch for the pub and mill roofs was cut from rushes around the farm.

The oak tree overlooking Bag End was chopped down and brought in. Each branch was numbered and chopped, then transported and bolted together. It weighed 26 tonnes. Artificial leaves were imported from Taiwan and individually wired onto the dead tree.

Click here to read the entire article and view the video.

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