Menu
Entertainment

Peter Jackson rejects 'The Hobbit' animal cruelty claims

The Hobbit director Peter Jackson and star Martin Freeman at today's press conference in Wellington.
The Hobbit director Peter Jackson and star Martin Freeman at today's press conference in Wellington. Seanna Cronin

THE stars of The Hobbit have described working on the film as a family atmosphere at a press conference this morning in Wellington.

Beloved Froddo actor Elijah Woods said it felt like "no time had passed at all" when he returned to Hobbiton to film his brief appearance in The Hobbit and Martin Freeman praised the film crew for being so understanding about his reservations of being away for his family for 18 months.

Freeman, who plays central character Bilbo Baggins, said he nearly had to turn down the titular role because of scheduling conflicts with his UK drama series Sherlock.

Speaking to media ahead of tonight's world premiere, director Peter Jackson said there was no one else but Freeman to play Bilbo.

Jackson said it felt like "the country was behind us" and hit back at claims of animal cruelty on The Hobbit set, describing them as "an insult to everyone who worked on the film".

Filmed at 48 frames per second and in 3D, The Hobbit is much more technologically advanced than the Lord of the Rings trilogy. Jackson said it was "not impossible" for the Lord of the Rings films to one day be re-released in 3D.

One of the many new additions to the Jackson fold, Barry Humphries joked about his "first nude scene" as his character The Goblin King and was teased by co-star Cate Blanchett for his "goiter".

Blanchett stood out in the line-up in a bright red dress and said she feel "madly" in love with Ian McKellen during the scenes they share together in the film, the first of Jackson's Hobbit trilogy.

The jovial atmosphere continued when the cast of dwarves took questions.

William Kircher joked about how the 13 actors had become "close with yaks" after wearing elaborate yak-hair beards for the past 18 months of filming.

The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey opens in Australia on Boxing Day.

Topics:  editors picks movie premiere peter jackson the hobbit: an unexpected journey



Presence of red bats divide opinions

WE'RE BACK: Bats in the trees alongside the Richmond River in Casino.

How many bats are too many?

RAIDS: Police sniff out cannabis operation

Police arrested and charged a 51-year-old Ballina man yesterday for drug supply and possession offences.

Bags of illicit drug, seeds, cash seized in raid

At $5, is this the cheapest meal on the Northern Rivers?

DEAL: Lismore Workers Club and Lismore Workers Sports Club are offering $5 meals this January.

But you only have one more week to take up the offer

Local Partners

Hottest 100: what we know so far

TRIPLE J may have controversially moved the Hottest 100 date to the day after Australia Day, but that hasn’t stopped fans voting in record-shattering numbers

Oscar nomination still sinking in for Margot Robbie

Margot Robbie at the red carpet premiere for her new film I,Tonya at Fox Studios in Moore Park, Sydney.

THE I, Tonya star celebrated with friends and family last night.

Blogger’s torment: ‘They told me to die’

Blogger Elle Darby has revealed her torment. Picture: Elle Darby

Blogger revealed her torment as her public clash with hotel owner escalates

premium_icon Sam X opens up on split with Ryan Phelan

Samantha X, author of Back on Top.

“Yes it is true — Ryan and I have ended our relationship”

Serial killer fed victims’ bodies to pigs

Daphane Pierre holds a picture of her sister Jackie Murdock and Jackie's children Ryan after Robert Pickton was found guilty on six counts of second-degree murder. Picture: AP Photo/Jonathan Hayward, CP

A SERIAL killer known as “The Butcher” may have sold human flesh to cops

James Reyne's show stands in Lennox Head

STILL ON : James Reyne

The artist cancelled some shows last week

premium_icon Does my kid’s question flag the end of free-to-air TV?

Chris Brown and Julia Morris are the host of Ten’s major new show, I'm a Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here. (Pic: Ten)

TV writer asks "Is anyone even watching free-to-air TV these days?"