The aging fishing vessel, originally named "Manuia" and built in the Netherlands in 1965, was bought for the King Kong production around 2004. It was heavily modified by the Weta Workshop to resemble an old 1890's ship, complete with smoke-stack. The original red/green colours were replaced with black, yellow and rust coloured paint, and the general shape was changed as well.
After the movie was completed, it stayed on the edge of the Miramar peninsula, where it's been moored ever since.
Now, word has it that the King Kong ship is finally going to be sunk, around mid February 2010. This has been widely expected for about three years now but the signs are pretty solid this time. Slowly, the ship is being stripped of all furnishings and non-sinkable items, and anything environmentally unfriendly. It is my expectation that it will be towed out to sea and scuttled somewhere near Wellington waters, to attract divers.
Before it's completely stripped, I hope to get a few choice souvenirs off it, if there's anything left - I know for instance that a lot of the external rivets on the hull exterior are fake, and would make great collectible items.
NB - the horizontal line of rivets is has a gap where the paint has flaked
off, taking the rivets with it - obviously glued on to the side.
Let me know if anyone is interested - I can't make any promises but I'll see what I can do!
- Jack M