October 21, 2016
        "Manchester by the Sea" leads the Gotham Award nominations                Tom Ford, Marc Platt and Kenneth Lonergan to be Honored at 20th Annual Hollywood Film Awards                Tom Cruise is in his action hero comfort zone with "Jack Reacher: Never Go Back"                "Moonlight" could be A24's big Oscar horse this year                Ewan McGregor steps behind the camera with "American Pastoral"                Hollywood Contenders: A second crack at Golden Globe predictions for 2016                "The Accountant" seeks to help give Ben Affleck another blockbuster                85 countries will be competing for Best Foreign Language Feature nominations at the Oscars                Tom Hanks to receive Hollywood Actor Award for "Sully" @ Hollywood Film Awards                "Certain Women" showcases Laura Dern, Kristen Stewart, and Michelle Williams                Ben Affleck is perhaps Hollywood's biggest and most diverse superstar                "The Birth of a Nation" looks to survive controversy and contend for awards                "The Girl on the Train" hopes to transport Emily Blunt to the Oscar race                "The Jungle Book," "Zootopia" and Craft Artists to be Honored at the 20th Annual Hollywood Film Awards                Ben Affleck's "Live By Night" officially is a 2016 contender        

Peter Jackson’s “Hobbit” staying in New Zealand, PM reports

By Sean O’Connell
Hollywoodnews.com: Peter Jackson’s Shire isn’t going anywhere.

New Zealand Prime Minister John Key announced today that, after days of negotiations, “The Hobbit” will film in New Zealand after all.

“I’m pleased to announce an agreement has been reached between the New Zealand Government and Warner Brothers to enable the two ‘Hobbit’ movies to be directed by Sir Peter Jackson, to be made New Zealand,” Key said, according to 3 News in New Zealand. “Making the two movies here will not only safe guard work for thousands of New Zealanders but will also allow us to follow the success of the ‘Lord of The Rings’ trilogy and once again promoting New Zealand on the world stage.”

In addition, 3 News reports that New Zealand will host one of the “Hobbit” world premieres.

The movie is expected to begin filming in February. Martin Freeman has been cast in the film in the lead role of Bilbo Baggins. Sir Ian McKellen is expected to reprise his role of Gandalf. The first “Hobbit” will be in theaters in 2012.

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About Sean O'Connell

Sean O'Connell is a nationally recognized film critic. His reviews have been published in print ('The Washington Post,' 'USA Today') and online (AMC FilmCritic.com, MSN's Citysearch) since 1996. He's a weekly contributor to several national radio programs. He is a longstanding member of the Broadcast Film Critics Association (BFCA), the Online Film Critics Society (OFCS), and the Southeastern Film Critics View all articles by Sean O'Connell Association (SEFCA).

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