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Peter Jackson's jet searches for missing Malaysian flight

April 2nd, 2014 3:20pm EDT
Peter Jackson
Peter Jackson has lent his private jet to the search for missing Malaysia Airlines Flight 370.
The 'The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug' director's $80 million G650 is being used to search for the airliner, which vanished en route from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing on March 8, off the coast of Australia.
A spokesperson for the filmmaker told the New Zealand Herald newspaper: "A lot of civilian and military aircraft are involved in the search and it's kind of disappointing that because one is owned by a celebrity it becomes a matter of news when there are [over] 200 people missing.''
He also denie...
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Taylor Swift buys $20 million penthouse?

March 29th, 2014 7:20pm EDT
Taylor Swift
Taylor Swift has reportedly snapped up two new penthouses in New York City for $20 million.
The 24-year-old singer sparked rumours she quietly purchased 'Lord of the Rings' director Peter Jackson's lavish apartments in the TriBeCa area, after being spotted going in and out of the upscale building regularly in recent days.
A source told Celebuzz that the 'Red' hitmaker began hunting for a house in the city in January and removal men were seen moving furniture into the building, in which Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen also reside, this week.
New Zealand-native Peter put his apartments in the 11-u...
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Lord of the Rings fame landed Elijah Wood in therapy

March 21st, 2014 4:10am EDT
Elijah Wood
The success of Lord Of The Rings sent the film trilogy's star Elijah Wood to therapy because he couldn't handle the fame that came with playing Frodo Baggins.

The actor reveals filming in New Zealand was the first time he had left home and he had an amazing time on the set, but when the first of Peter Jackson's three films was released, his world was turned upside down.

In a new interview published by the Globe, Wood says, "Like so many other people, I had to work some issues out. It's not easy being 18, getting all this incredible attention all of a sudden.

"I liked seeing a therapist. ...
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The Most Anticipated Films Of 2014, Part Two

January 1st, 2014 8:03pm EST
22 Jump Street
One part wasn't enough - that's right, even more films we're hyped about in 2014. Check out Part One if you haven't read it, but for now, let's get on with part two:

22 Jump Street

Why We’re Hyped: After being held back by high school, Channing Tatum and Jonah Hill get to really let loose in college.

Why We’re Worried: Comedy sequels are either great or make us wish they stopped at just one.

Maleficent

Why We’re Hyped: A dark and interesting look into one of Disney’s classic villains, portrayed by Angelina Jolie. Linda Woolverton, who helped write Beauty and the Beast, Aladdin, a...
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The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug ends 2013 atop North American box office

December 29th, 2013 8:30pm EST
The Hobbit: The Desolation Of Smaug
Director Peter Jackson is ending 2013 on a box office high - The Hobbit: The Desolation Of Smaug has scored a third week as the most popular film in North America.

The second installment of the fantasy series was a big draw on Christmas Day (25Dec13), bringing in $9.3 million (£6.2 million) on the holiday alone, and it continued to attract big crowds with a $30 million (£20 million) take this weekend (27-29Dec13).

Animated Disney film Frozen grossed $28.8 million (£19.2 million) in its sixth weekend on release, while comedy Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues was third with $20.2 million (£...
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The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug remains holiday favourite at U.S. box office

December 23rd, 2013 3:10am EST
The Hobbit: The Desolation Of Smaug
Peter Jackson's The Hobbit: The Desolation Of Smaug has fought off competition from the Anchorman sequel to hold on to the top spot at the North American box office for a second consecutive week.

The fantasy film, starring Martin Freeman, Orlando Bloom and Benedict Cumberbatch, earned another $31.5 million (£21 million) to stay at number one, ahead of Will Ferrell's Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues, which debuted with $26.8 million (£17.87 million).

Disney's animated Frozen was in third place, taking in $19.2 million (£12.8 million) to edge out David O. Russell's American Hustle, which e...
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The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug tops the North American box office

December 15th, 2013 8:40pm EST
The Hobbit: The Desolation Of Smaug
Peter Jackson's The Hobbit sequel has struck gold at the North American box office after conjuring up an impressive opening weekend take of $73.7 million (£49.1 million).

The early success of fantasy epic The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug has made it the fourth biggest December opening ever, behind last year's (12) The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, I Am Legend and Avatar.

Disney's animated winter tale Frozen fell to second place with $22.2 million (£14.8 million) and Tyler Perry's A Madea Christmas earned $16.16 million (£10.77 million) in its debut weekend.

The Hunger Games: Catchi...
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Evangeline Lilly struggled with heavy elf wig in The Hobbit film

December 9th, 2013 3:10am EST
Evangeline Lilly
Actress Evangeline Lilly struggled to shoot action scenes in the new The Hobbit sequel because her props often became tangled in her character's long red hair.

The former Lost star insists she enjoyed working with director Peter Jackson on The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug in New Zealand, but she was not so fond of the troublesome 20-pound (nine-kilogram) wig she was forced to wear as new elf warrior Tauriel for the film.

She tells the New York Daily News, "The wig was incredibly painful when I had to do my stunts. It also gets caught in everything. I would get my weapons caught in my h...
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Lord of the Rings costumes and props to be sold at auction

October 7th, 2013 8:31pm EDT
Peter Jackson
Costumes and props from director Peter Jackson's Lord Of The Rings trilogy are to go under the hammer at an auction in California in December (13).

The Trilogy Collection: Props & Costumes from Middle Earth will include memorabilia which has been assembled over the past decade by a passionate collector, whose haul is second only to Jackson's.

Highlights up for grabs at the Julien's Auctions sale on 5 December (13) include Frodo's sword Sting, Samwise's prosthetic Hobbit feet, Aragorn's sword, Gimli the Dwarf's battle axe and Gandalf the White's wizard staff, as well as costumes from the t...
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'The Hobbit: The Desolation Of Smaug' - Second Trailer Released (Watch It!)

October 1st, 2013 12:04pm EDT
The Hobbit: The Desolation Of Smaug
The second trailer for the middle film in Peter Jackson's "Hobbit" trilogy, The Hobbit: The Desolation Of Smaug, has been released, building plenty of anticipation for the film's December release.

Desolation picks up right where the first film, An Unexpected Journey, left off; with Bilbo (Martin Freeman), Gandalf (Ian McKellen) and the party of 13 dwarves led by Thorin Oakenshield (Richard Armitage) continuing their quest to the Lonely Mountain to reclaim its treasure and defeat its current inhabitant: the dragon Smaug (Benedict Cumberbatch).

Other than the usual quick glimpses of the act...
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Peter Jackson to receive top award from broadcasters' organisation

August 14th, 2013 3:11am EDT
Peter Jackson
Director Peter Jackson will be the toast of the 2013 International Broadcasting Convention as the recipient of the International Honor for Excellence.

The Lord of the Rings filmmaker, known for the stunning visual effects in his movies, has been selected to collect the organisation's highest honour in recognition of his work "fostering the relationship between technology and creativity" in the film industry.

He will pick up the accolade in September (13), when the annual event takes place in Amsterdam, Holland.

Previous recipients include director James Cameron, producer Jeffrey Katzenbe...
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Andy Serkis Helped Peter Jackson Direct 'The Hobbit'

December 11th, 2012 9:54am EST
Andy Serkis
Actor Andy Serkis not only played the role of Gollum in Peter Jackson's upcoming The Hobbit trilogy, he also directed a handful of action scenes.

The British star is set to make his filmmaking debut in an upcoming adaptation of George Orwell's classic novel Animal Farm, and to give Serkis some practice, Jackson made him the fantasy franchise's second unit director.

He tells New York Magazine, "Directing was my main job this time - more than playing Gollum. I worked 200 days with a huge team shooting battle sequences, aerials. It was an amazing experience and one which I was very, very t...
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Ian McKellen Defends 'The Hobbit' Trilogy Decision

December 6th, 2012 3:54pm EST
Ian McKellen
Ian McKellen has defended filmmaker Peter Jackson's decision to turn J.R.R. Tolkien's novel The Hobbit into a movie trilogy, insisting fans will be delighted to see three installments.

The director originally intended to make a two-part prequel to his The Lord of the Rings series, and came under fire after announcing he would release three epics instead.

Critics accused him of trying to make more money by stretching out the classic book, but McKellen, who plays Gandalf the wizard, refutes the suggestion.

He says, "Anyone who thinks Peter Jackson would fall for market forces around him...
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Peter Jackson Rushing To Complete 'The Hobbit' Before World Premiere

November 26th, 2012 6:09pm EST
Peter Jackson
Peter Jackson is rushing to put the finishing touches to the first installment of The Hobbit ahead of its world premiere on Wednesday.

The Lord of the Rings filmmaker wrapped an epic 266-day shoot in New Zealand in early July and the first movie in the highly-anticipated trilogy, The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, is due to be unveiled in the city of Wellington this week.

However, in Jackson's final video blog about the making of the fantasy franchise, he confesses he and his post-production team are scrambling to complete the final edit before their deadline.

In the clip, posted onli...
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Peter Jackson: 'No Animals Died Or Were Harmed On Set' While Filming 'The Hobbit'

November 20th, 2012 8:42am EST
The Hobbit An Unexpected Journey
People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) sent an angry letter to filmmaker Peter Jackson after reports suggested 27 animals died during the making of "The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey."

Over the weekend four wranglers hired to help feed and groom the creatures reported that abuses and incompetence led to the deaths of three horses and several sheep, goats and chickens.

Jackson has fired back at the allegations and issued the following statement: "The producers of The Hobbit take the welfare of all animals very seriously and have always pursued the highest standard of care for a...
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Peter Jackson Confirms That 'The Hobbit' Is Being Extended Into A Trilogy

July 31st, 2012 1:02am EDT
The Hobbit
Lord of the Rings director Peter Jackson took to his Facebook page on Monday to address recent rumors that he may be turning his two-film adaptation of J.R.R. Tolkein's Rings prequel The Hobbit into a trilogy, as the source material for the story goes far beyond the planned two-part epic.

During last month's annual Comic Con in San Diego, Jackson hinted at the possibility of adding a third film to the recently wrapped part one The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey and currently-in-production second installment The Hobbit: There and Back Again.

And now, after weeks of negotiations with Warner ...
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Peter Jackson Announces End Of 'The Hobbit' Filming

July 6th, 2012 12:39pm EDT
Peter Jackson
The cast of the highly-anticipated The Hobbit movies is celebrating after finally wrapping director Peter Jackson's ambitious 266-day shoot.

Martin Freeman, Elijah Wood, Orlando Bloom, Cate Blanchett and Ian McKellen are among the stars who have jetted out to New Zealand for filming, which began in March last year.

And on Friday, Jackson took to his Facebook.com page to share his delight after completing the two blockbusters, The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey and The Hobbit: There And Back Again.

He writes, "We made it! Shoot day 266 and the end of principal photography on The Hobbit....
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Peter Jackson Explains Why Maligned 'Hobbit' Footage Won't Suck By December

April 30th, 2012 12:09pm EDT
Peter Jackson
When Peter Jackson screened 10-minutes of footage from "The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey" to salivating exhibitors and journalists at CinemaCon in Las Vegas last week, expectations went from "through the roof" to "sub-basement" due to it being projected in the still-experimental 48-frames-per-second format.

While the film itself received praise, watching it at twice the usual framerate of 24fps had experts likening it to "that soap opera look you get from badly calibrated TVs at Best Buy" or "Middle Earth looked like it was captured as part of a filmed stage play."

In other words it seem...
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First Reactions To 'The Hobbit' Trailer An Unexpected WTF?

April 25th, 2012 7:06pm EDT
The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey
Of all the huge films coming out this year — "The Hunger Games," "The Avengers, "The Dark Knight Rises" — none is as hotly anticipated as "The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey," which arrives in theaters this December eight long years after "The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King." Expectations, as they say, are sky high.

Or, they were, anyway, right up until Peter Jackson debuted the first 10 minutes of "The Hobbit" at CinemaCon in Las Vegas yesterday. That's how long it took to go from sky high to the sky is falling. Uh oh.

First, the good news: By all accounts, the movie itself —...
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10 Book-To-Film Adaptations To Look Out For In 2012

March 20th, 2012 11:00am EDT
Being Flynn still
2012 is shaping up to be a very literate year in motion pictures. Over 30 films on the release schedule are based on books, short stories or comic books. Below are 10 of the most notable.

1. BEING FLYNN

Based on: Another Bullsh*t Night in Suck City by Nick Flynn

Basic plot: A guy who works at a homeless shelter finds his estranged, alcoholic, deadbeat dad wandering in one night.

Starring: Robert DeNiro, Paul Dano, Julianne Moore

Director: Paul Weitz

Why it’ll make you thankful: I’m guessing your father isn’t in a homeless shelter…

Release date: Opened March 2 (limited)

2...
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From 'Hunger Games' To The 'Twilight' Saga: The Best & Worst Book To Film Adaptations

March 18th, 2012 3:00pm EDT
Lions Gate Entertainment
The Hunger Games hits theaters Friday in what looks to be a battle for box office gold (it’s already sold more pre-sale tickets than any of the Twilight movies, according to Fandango). And while it’s current 100 percent fresh rating on Rotten Tomatoes is reassuring, anxious fans still have a week to go before they’ll know for sure if director Gary Ross paid good enough tribute to Suzanne Collins’ literary franchise.

Before then, let’s take a look back at Hollywood’s best and worst popular franchise adaptations...

BEST: The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring

Before Peter Ja...
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Everything We Know About 'The Hobbit' So Far

March 14th, 2012 2:32pm EDT
hobbit_300x220
There are a lot of great movies coming out this year, and every one of them wants you to believe it's the biggest film event of the decade. "The Dark Knight Rises"! "The Hunger Games"! The Avengers"!

But as fantastic as those films look, there's one movie coming out this year that is set to rule them all: "The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey." So before the onslaught of contenders begins, we thought we'd take a look at everything we know so far about this year's champ.

Release Date: December 14

Star Power: Many of the biggest stars from "The Lord of the Rings" are returning to reprise the...
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Check Out Spielberg's 'The Adventures Of Tintin' On Blu-ray 3D, Blu-ray & DVD March 13

March 12th, 2012 7:12am EDT
The Adventures of Tintin
Director Steven Spielberg kicks off the big-screen Tintin trilogy with "The Adventures Of Tintin," a computer-animated, motion-capture adaptation of Herge's beloved Tintin comic strip.

Produced by Spielberg, Peter Jackson, and Kathleen Kennedy, the first installment in the series finds adventure-seeking Belgian reporter Tintin (voiced by Jamie Bell) and surly Captain Haddock (Andy Serkis) racing to recover a treasure that was lost at sea four centuries ago. Meanwhile, the malevolent Red Rackham (Daniel Craig) is determined to beat them to it.

Simon Pegg, Nick Frost, and Toby Jones pr...
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'The Hobbit' Cast & Crew Avoided Severe Weather, Flooding

March 3rd, 2012 9:30am EST
The Hobbit
"Hobbit" director Peter Jackson was forced to halt filming on his prequels in December when local police issued a severe weather warning and urged him and his crew to pack up as driving rains and floods hit their remote New Zealand location.

The filmmaker has posted footage of the storms in his latest behind-the-scenes video blog from the set of the top secret movie, which has been shot across his native New Zealand for the past eight months.

Jackson explains he was shooting scenes of dwarves floating down the Pelorus River for the second sequel when blue skies clouded over and the weathe...
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Billy Connolly To Play Dain Ironfoot In 'The Hobbit'

February 9th, 2012 9:52am EST
Billy Connolly
Peter Jackson has completed the star-studded cast of "The Hobbit" after signing up Billy Connolly to play a dwarf warrior.

The actor will tackle the role of Dain Ironfoot and joins Ian McKellen, Elijah Wood and Orlando Bloom in the director's "Lord of the Rings" prequel.

Jackson tells The Hollywood Reporter, "We could not think of a more fitting actor to play Dain Ironfoot, the staunchest and toughest of Dwarves, than Billy Connelly, the Big Yin himself. With Billy stepping into this role, the cast of The Hobbit is now complete. We can't wait to see him on the Battlefield!"

"The Hobbit: ...
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Police Called To 'The Hobbit' Casting Call

January 30th, 2012 8:40am EST
The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey
An open audition for Peter Jackson's new The Hobbit movie had to be shut down on Saturday after more than 3,000 hopefuls turned up.

The director is currently in New Zealand filming the two-part Lord of the Rings prequel, which stars Martin Freeman, and a casting call for a part in the film attracted thousands of applicants over the weekend.

Producers expected around 1,000 wannabes to turn out for the auditions in Lower Hutt, near the capital city of Wellington, but they were overrun when more than 3,000 arrived.

Police were called to help control the crowds and the auditions were shut...
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Peter Jackson Offering Hobbit Set Visit For Charity

December 23rd, 2011 3:26pm EST
The Hobbit-20110722-39.jpg
The Hobbit director Peter Jackson is offering a fan the chance to visit the set of the movie in New Zealand to raise money for charity.

The filmmaker is currently shooting the Lord of the Rings prequel, based on J.R.R. Tolkien's classic novel, with stars including Martin Freeman, Hugo Weaving, Ian McKellen, Elijah Wood and Orlando Bloom.

Now Jackson is offering up the chance to visit the set of the film as part of the Stars Come Out Auction, which launched on Trademe.co.nz this week to raise funds for scientist Sir Ray Avery's charity Medicine Mondiale.

Other offers up for auction includ...
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Return To Middle Earth With The First Trailer For 'The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey' (Watch It!)

December 21st, 2011 12:50am EST
The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey
It's almost time to return to Middle Earth! On Tuesday Warner Bros. Pictures released the first official trailer for The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey and you can check it out right here!

An Unexpected Journey follows the adventures of Hobbit Bilbo Baggins that took place before the epic Lord of the Rings trilogy. Bilbo joins 13 dwarves, led by the warrior Thorin Oakenshield, on a quest to reclaim a lost dwarf kingdom since taken over by the dragon Smaug. Along the way Bilbo encounters Goblins, Spiders, Trolls and Elves; and he finds the precious ring that once belonged to the evil Sauron ...
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Blu-ray Review: 'Heavenly Creatures: The Uncut Version'

December 20th, 2011 9:30am EST
Heavenly Creatures photo
What did visual maverick maven Peter 'Lord of the Rings' Jackson really have in store when he made his famed flick about two gals determined to stay together no matter what the cost? Find out with the arrival of "Heavenly Creatures: The Uncut Version" out on Blu-ray now from Lionsgate Home Entertainment. Check out the spellbinding specs below.

Title: "Heavenly Creatures: The Uncut Version"

Grade: 4

Cast: Melanie Lynskey, Kate Winslet, Sara Peirse

Director: Peter Jackson

Rating: R

Runtime: 109 minutes

Release Company: Lionsgate

Website: www.lionsgatebluray.com

The Fl...
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Evangeline Lilly 'Very Concerned' Over Her 'Hobbit' Role

September 22nd, 2011 11:13am EDT
Evangeline Lilly
Evangeline Lilly fears "purist" fans will hate her role in The Hobbit because her character didn't feature in the book and was invented solely for the fantasy film adaptation.

The Lost actress' Sylvan elf Tauriel was created especially for director Peter Jackson's upcoming Lord of the Rings prequel, based on J.R.R. Tolkien's classic novel The Hobbit.

However, Lilly admits she is terrified Tolkien devotees won't respond well when the movie epic is released next year.

She says, "The Hobbit didn't include female characters at all. I can see why additional characters were needed to round ...
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