“Hobbit law” passes, changes New Zealand legislation for Peter Jackson

By Sean O’Connell
Hollywoodnews.com: New Zealand’s Parliament officially closed the books on the labor dispute that almost shut Peter Jackson and his crew out of the country, passing what has come to be known as the “Hobbit law” on Friday morning by the vote of 66-50.

The vote amended an existing law to now say that that film workers employed as independent contractors “cannot also claim to be employees,” according to Variety. The problem stems from issues that surfaced during Jackson’s “Lord of the Rings” shoots, where contract employees tried to claim a different work status.

From here on out, the only “Hobbit” stories we should be relaying will have to do with casting, production, editing and theatrical release. Right? Let’s keep our fingers crossed.

Jackson will begin filming “The Hobbit” in February, with an eye on release dates in 2012 and 2013.

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