The Hobbit, Peter Jackson's forthcoming 'Lord of the Rings' movie, has begun principle photography.
The Hobbit has been delayed on numerous occasions due to a studio fiscal crisis and a complicated union dispute, but filming is now underway and the first images from the movie's set have been released, reports the Los Angeles Times.The Oscar winning director Peter Jackson and his crew have begun filming at Stone Street Studios in Wellington, New Zealand. The acclaimed filmmaker posted images from the movie's set on his new Facebook page, to the delight of Lord of the Rings' fans. The $500 million fantasy adventure movie has been in serious jeopardy for the past year following the financial failings of studio Mgm and the departure of Guillermo Del Toro. The 'Pans Labyrinth' filmmaker had initially signed on to direct the movie, but pulled out of the project because of the on-going delays. A spokesman on set told the Wall Street Journal that "the mood is really great". Jackson's previous 'Lord of the Rings' movies have pulled in a total of $2.9 billion at the box-office and a new 15-disc Blue-ray box-set is scheduled to hit shelves on 28th June 2011.
The Hobbit is set to be released in two parts, the first of which will be released in late 2012 and the second will follow in 2013. Both movies are being shot in digital 3-D.