PJ's public appearance takes a turn towards LOTR - Can't escape the hype

NZ Press reports the following:

JACKSON AND HIS NEW Y-FRONTS

WELLINGTON -- Movie director Peter Jackson has made a rare public appearance to promote new hi-tech facilities at a film studio in Lower Hutt. But he could not escape questions on progress in filming The Lord of the Rings.

Jackson held the launch at the Film Studio, formerly the National Film Unit, which his company WingNut Films bought from Television New Zealand.

Guests included Prime Minister Helen Clark, Speaker Jonathan Hunt, Hutt City Mayor John Terris, and film industryrepresentatives, including director Vincent Ward.

None of the film's stars, including Sir Ian McKellen, Elijah Wood, or Christopher Lee attended the launch.

Jackson told guests he had a reason for not preparing a speech.

"Spending all day with Gandalf telling Sauron the ring must be destroyed ... over and over again. My head's in a different space at the moment.

"It's always very exciting, it's a very famous book. It's a privilege to be involved in Lord of the Rings. You wake up
every morning and plan to do that (film the book). It's like a large military operation."

He had recently been checking areas around Mount Ruapehu and confirmed it may be used as the location for Mordor – a place in the novel which includes the volcano Mount Doom.

"It's a strong possibility."

At the heart of the hi-tech facility at The Film Unit is a machine called a Y-front telecine. The machine copies film on to a digital format for editing and special effects.

--NZPA

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