Is This Place for Real?
“The hill is perfect – steep, shaggy and as green as a radioactive shamrock, like the matching hills around it,” The New York Times describes. “The sheep seem pretty idyllic themselves: polite little nibblers who only sometimes block the road. As for the oak tree on the hill’s crest, it is quite literally perfect. Every flickering leaf was handcrafted, right down to the spidery plastic veins, a tribute to the meticulousness of Sir Peter Jackson, the movie director who staged this place, even creating the pond. (Where better for Paradise Geese to land?) You are standing in Hobbiton, the place where J. R. R. Tolkien’s furry-footed hobbits came to life in Jackson’s Lord of the Ringstrilogy and will soon reappear in his Hobbit prequels. For Jackson, New Zealand and the millions of fans who spent the last decade tromping this island country in search of Lord of the Rings filming locations, the journey is about to begin again.”