Friday, 5 March 2010

Shane Rangi in Rivendell - with a sword! (photos!)

Earlier this week, I was at the Kaitoke Regional Park - better known here as Rivendell - and as we were walking across the bridge, I couldn't help noticing a group of people standing about 30 meters away. One had a good sized video camera (larger, for instance, than most tourists cameras), one had an official looking clipboard in his hand. The one that stood out the most though, was the big muscular looking gent with no hair and carrying a sword, who I immediately identified as LOTR's very own Shane Rangi!

Shane has appeared many times in our favourite trilogy, often as a stunt double, although most famously in The Fellowship Of The Ring as the Witch-King of Angmar. Apparently he has a T-Shirt he wears to conventions that boldly proclaims "I Stabbed Frodo!", something only he (and Shelob, I guess) could get away with. Shane also played the Harad Leader on top of the Mumak who was dispatched by Eomer's spear. In fact, the first time I met him, I was waiting for someone at Weta Digital to come to lunch with me, and I approached Shane (he also doubled as Weta Digital's receptionist at times), saying "I'm sure I recognise you from somewhere", to which he replied "picture me with a spear sticking out of my stomach"... Nice. :)

Soon, Shane crossed the River, with the others looking on from the near side. We left them to it.

Anyway, as I took my guests for a stroll through Rivendell, Shane's group was walking back to the carpark again. I know better than to ask a group of film-industry people what they're working on - their affairs are subtle, and they are quick to anger, and all that. Closed questions are even worse - they will say both "no" and "yes". (ed: enough with the Tolkien misquoting already!)

I was told that they were scouting for a new production, and one of the group knew the question on my mind - it must have been pretty obvious - and offered "sorry, we're definitely not working on a JRR Tolkien project", something Shane has since confirmed as well. So, it's apparently not The Hobbit then - so what else could it be? What sword carrying production is soon to be filmed in the Rivendell area? Are we getting another Narnia movie here? Shane has just returned from the new Narnia production in Australia, Voyage Of The Dawn Treader. Is the next one to be filmed here? Or will it be a locally made TV series, like Legend Of The Seeker perhaps?

Here's another photo of the rest of the group - if anyone can identify any of them, maybe that could give more clues to the purpose of the scouting trip!

Who are all these guys?? (click on the picture for a bigger version)

Let me know what you think!

  - Jack M.

PS - a BIG thanks to Andrew B. for the great photos!


  1. I have heard reports of there being a substantial handful of movies coming to be made/filmed in Wellington over the next few months. Some of the large budget, some smaller. So it may entirely be possible that the crew was telling the truth.

    (I don't think they'd be filming any test shoots considering the project has yet to be greenlight. Or perhaps they are in hopes of funding? Hm...ponderous, indeed.)

  2. I suspect they were telling the truth as well, but I am quite curious about what it could be instead then. Shane said I'd find out in due time, and in the meantime "Mum's the word"... :)

    - Jack

  3. Correction to my earlier post, the exact request is:

    "trying to find some male bearded
    extras with darker colouring - men who could look Eastern Mediterranean
    some centuries ago"

  4. senlacsson:

    Sounds intriguing...! Got a link for us?

    As an aside, Shane Rangi made it into the paper again yesterday dressed as an Oscar, including fullbody gold paint... there was a smaller version of the photo on but if anyone wants to see the full photo, let me know, and I'll pop it up somewhere...

    - Jack

  5. I hear Kingdom Come may be brought back to life, could it be that possibly?

  6. @Nicole:

    I heard that too... I'm not sure though - I visited the Miramar set on top of Mt Crawford a month ago or so, it looked pretty bad. The weather had pretty much destroyed it in large parts. It would take a lot of money to revive it to a usable state again.

    I took some pictures - ya reckon I should blog about it?

    - Jack