What New Zealand’s Covid-19 Curveball Means For Its Booming Hollywood Productions

As the magical creatures of Middle Earth prepare to resume venturing through Auckland, New Zealand, for Amazon’s “Lord of the Rings” prequel series, the mythical world of Pandora has been bursting into life for James Cameron’s “Avatar” sequels in Wellington, just one hour’s flight south.

Meanwhile, on the South Island, stars like Viggo Mortensen are planning to embark on “The Greatest Beer Run Ever” in Dunedin, while a game-changing production studio has been proposed for Christchurch.As filming hubs like Los Angeles and London continue to face restrictions and increased health and safety costs amid the coronavirus pandemic, New Zealand called “action” on international productions in June.“I think the pause was beneficial to all of us because we were grateful to finish our film healthy and safely,” says actor Kirsten Dunst about returning to work on Jane Campion’s “The Power of the Dog.” “We pushed

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