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Category Archives: New Zealand

5 Minutes with Mark Hadlow (Dori)


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A huge thank you to Dori for being part of the Red Carpet Tours family! He shared a few moments and memories with us.

Biggest Challenge

How was Dori going to take shape. Prosthetics, makeup, costume and weapons essentially were going to determine his look, but maintaining the character for nearly two years in production was going to be a major part of the challenge. I think what helped was the brothers back-story. Dori, Nori and Ori were a pretty close family! Sure, there were squabbles and dislikes but ultimately they had each other's backs. Blood is thicker than water.

Best Locations

It's so hard to choose one, because New Zealand is so amazing to travel anywhere. I think all of the locations were outstanding. Pelorus river was exciting, going down it in barrels and seeing the grandeur of Paradise valley in Queenstown. There was something special about every location. Just like the movies - we were on an adventure, and the journey within the journey was traveling to the locations.

Favourite Scene?

There were a number of them but probably the best was the barrels in the water race! A big water ride was built to shoot the close-up scenes in Upper Hutt in Wellington. It was like a Disney ride and we felt like kids in an amusement park. Two huge Diesel engines propelled water round this huge oval water channel the size of a football field and we got in barrels and were propelled around it we just had fun. It was brilliant, crazy and amazing. 

What's Next?

I'm trying to get a film a mate has written up and running, called SWANSONG. It's a cop serial-killer movie, and the script is a page-turner. Stef Harris is the writer/director, I'm playing a cop and Jed Brophy is playing the serial killer. It's compelling. We are working pretty hard at getting some finance together but the process is pretty slow. Takes forever to bankroll but we believe firmly in the project and will keep sourcing interest. I have a play later in the year for ATC and I've been cast in a film happening mid-year. My Navy work will pick up again with a new project, I hope, and my one-man-show MAMIL (Middle aged Man in Lycra) hopefully may get another couple of seasons. All in all there's a bit on the horizon!

Working with Red Carpet Tours

I am really enjoying meeting the fans on the Red Carpet Tours. I enjoy reliving the stories and the pictures as much as they do! Re-telling the excitement of days on set and the experience keeps it fresh in my ageing mind. I look forward to meeting more!

Favourite Lines

Probably the ones addressed to The Wizard himself, but there were a few in all the films so all of them I guess. Family squabbles with the brothers were good ones.

Lines Spoken to Ori:

  • "Just try it you might like it"
  • "Would you like a cup of camomile tea Mr Gandalf?"
  • "It's got a fruity bouquet"
  • "Mr Gandalf can't you do something about this deluge?"

Daniel Reeve Reflections - Artists Sketching and Photography Tour 2016


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What was your favourite part of the Artists Tour?

Impossible question! I always love going to Hobbiton, and I’d never had the evening banquet there before, so that was really nice. Trollshaws was also a new experience – loved it! Meeting Ian Hayman – what a character! All the locations are fantastic. I also loved walking on the Routeburn Track on Day 14. But perhaps the favourite part was seeing the artists flourish as they learned new skills and techniques, and so many people trying calligraphy and loving it. And the whole group bonding – it really is a fellowship by the time the tour is done.

Oh, and the earthquake was pretty impressive too!

How many years have you been working with Red Carpet Tours and how did you get involved?

I did my first presentations with Red Carpet Tours in 2004, after a chance meeting at an LOTR-related event. I’ve done the presentations ever since, apart from 2-3 years off while making The Hobbit. It has been a fascinating journey, and every group is unique – but invariably wonderful.

What's next for you in your incredible art world?

I’ve been asked to do a solo exhibition at the Kapiti Gallery this February-March, so I’m busy preparing for that. Oh, and I’ve just made new signage for Hobbiton – that’s a nice on-going relationship. There’s the possibility of working on Mortal Engines, but I won’t know that for a while - and if it happens, I won’t be able to tell you!

What is your top advice for fantasy artists and photographers?

Work on subjects for which you have a passion, as this will bring out your best. Think about composition. Use light for maximum advantage – it’s all about the light.

What is your favourite quote from Lotr or Hobbit trilogies?

In a hole in the ground there lived a hobbit.

…and

The Road goes ever on and on Down from the door where it began.

Now far ahead the Road has gone, and I must follow, if I can.

Pursuing it with weary feet, Until it joins some larger way, Where many paths and errands meet.

And wither then? I cannot say.  

…and

Not all those who wander are lost.

What's your best piece of advice for budding calligraphers?

Don’t get so good that you steal my job!

No, seriously, try ALL aspects of lettering – there are so many more facets to calligraphy than what I get time to demonstrate for Red Carpet folk. Do all the styles, use all the different tools, go really big and really small, invent alphabets, create a font – become multi-talented. Each part reinforces all the others.

And probably more than anything, SHOW your work, and learn from other people’s work.

Art from the tour

 


Winter in New Zealand


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Beautiful pristine lakes, big blue skies and long white clouds envelope you ~ Aoteroa.New Zealand

Winter in New Zealand is an adventure worthy of the grandest fireside tale! You may see rainfall, with sparkling water falling over the sweeping landscapes, but a true adventure isn’t always sunshine. See frosty snow-capped peaks in our jewel of the South Island, and refreshingly crisp mornings in the endlessly green North Island. Our winter season usually has fewer tourists, so you can enjoy the uncrowded attractions and pathways more exclusively. 

A Red Carpet Winter Tour

You can look forward to cool crisp mornings and beautiful clean air, with hearty food fit for any Hobbit.

The Hobbit holes look warmly inviting and occasionally there may be a slight frost on the Party Field. The crackling open fire in the Green Dragon will warm you up, along with a pint made especially for Hobbiton by the Good George brewery and a lovely buffet lunch with the fellowship.

Pickles, Hobbiton's resident cat LOTR

Pickles, Hobbiton's resident cat.

Mountains Gandalf - LOTR

"Mountains Gandalf, I want to see mountains again."

We climb (short)  mountains, take helicopter tours over mountains and fly our flag from mountains. Have comfortable footwear, dress in layers, including a warm coat, hat and gloves.

Why not treat yourself to  warm merino wool hat and gloves while you're in New Zealand ? We grow quality wool in the Shire!

 

Mount Cook New Zealand

Beautiful pristine lakes, big blue skies and long white clouds envelop you ~ Aotearoa.

Every season in Middle Earth is special in its own unique way. Come and join us this winter for an adventure you will never forget.

Lord of The Rings Tour

Packing List

LAYERS! New Zealand is famous for “four seasons in one day” and our North and South Islands have different climates. Packing smart layers will help you stay comfortable (and dry) all day during your tours.

  • Long pants
  • Closed comfortable walking shoes
  • Breathable base layers – the weather can turn hot and sunny in moments
  • Insulating mid-layer (fleece, sweater, etc)
  • Waterproof/windproof jacket – this is essential
  • Sunscreen (yes, we have bright sunny days in winter!)
  • Warm hat
  • Sunglasses