From Bilbo’s Hobbit Hole

The Hobbit in New Zealand

It’s funny that I happen to be in New Zealand while all the financial wrangling about The Hobbit movie’s future. It’s all they talk about on the local news and the radio!

I only have a cursory understanding of what is going on, but I believe it had something to do with the unions, and the movie studio was getting a bit worried about committing a bunch of money to something unstable. At the last second, the NZ gov’t jumped in to toss $10mm in guarantees into the deal to ensure that the 2-part movie is made here.

Daily Photo – From Bilbo’s Hobbit Hole

When I was in a little town called Matamata, which Peter Jackson’s team selected as the perfect place for Hobbiton, I was lucky enough to receive a private tour from Ian Brodie (see Hobbiton Tours for more info!). Ian is also quite the HDR enthusiast (see Ian’s Photo Website), so it was great to spend several hours with the guy! I put a video of us together below… and we talked a bit about taking photos of the party tree.

After that, we got to adventure inside of Bilbo’s actual hole! Cool! I turned around to take a photo from the inside out. The huge tree there is the famous party tree, where Bilbo had his birthday party with Frodo before he slipped on the ring.

HDR Photo

Video – HDR in Hobbiton

I took this video earlier in the year with Ian. You can take the tour too! Just go visit Hobbiton Tours, and be sure to say hi to Ian if you see him while running around Hobbiton!

  • Looks like a shot straight out of a fairy tail !!!

  • casusan

    Awesome shot Trey – cool! Loved the video too – had forgotten! Loved the three’s co theme song at the end!

  • I absolutely love this one πŸ˜€ Thanks Trey!

  • Fantastic, I must visit Ian one of these days… I don’t get up north very often, now I have an excuse! πŸ™‚

  • Wow what an experience – I always reckon those Hobbit holes look like an ideal place to live. I’m glad NZ got to be the location again for ‘The Hobbit’. After the original LOTR movies I don’t think there is anywhere better to film it. From my POV i would have been disappointed had it been shot elsewhere. Is that the ‘Party Tree’ i see just in the distance?

  • Patrick Ahles

    Can’t wait for the new movies! Love to visit this some time. Great shot!

  • Andy, I too was worried for a while the they may film it elsewhere due to pressure from Hollywood, but it looks like NZ takes the cake again for another (hopefully) stunning release! Speaking of stunning, this HDR I processed tonight came up pretty good:

  • Patrick

    I’m glad the government didn’t start to toss 10mm in grenades into something πŸ˜‰
    I also think that NZ basically IS Middle-Earth – at least since the LotR trilogy movies, that basically established it firmly.

  • “Three’s Company…?” didn’t see that coming. Great video.

  • Thanks!

    Eden – just say you know me, and Ian will give you the Royal treatment!

    Andy – Yes that’s the Party Tree ! πŸ™‚ It’s very old…

  • I love LOTR trilogy!

  • Alex

    Thanks for the peek into the shot. Great locale to shoot.

  • Nice shots! Aren’t the hobbit holes from the original movie now being used as sheep huts? I’ve seen a few articles documenting that. Here’s one from Laughing Squid ( I may be confusing my hobbit movies πŸ™‚

  • Gail in Montana

    Love this one, Trey!!! Now that yahoo and facebook are working again, I got to do my usual morning reading. Way behind. Been a weird 2 days. I didn’t watch the video yet, no time today. Maybe tomorrow afternoon I can. Thanks for sharing the neat photo from inside the tree, amazing!!!

  • Simon Morris

    Great shot Trey, wonderful perspective… that ‘Party Tree’ sure is BIG!

  • For someone who was stuck in customs for quite a long time (airport 4 days and refused by customs 4 times over a month-long period) I like the title of the site. Also, being a tolkien freak, I read about the hobbit set from a director POV and was stoked to see it live. I preferred the life film footage of the set to the photo, but that said, nice shot of Party Tree!

  • Love the shot and thanks for the informational video presentation, Trey!

  • Trishie

    If you are stopping over in SIngapore while you’re out across the globe, I think you will find it worth checking out the kite flyers. Near the Novotel, they fly radio control stunt kites at night, with LEDs all over them. Reckon you could get some amazing time lapse.

  • Danielle

    wow – did they give you permission to take video and photos and post them online? I was at Hobbiton in October and they made us sign something to say that although we could take photos and stuff – we weren’t allowed to show it to ANYONE or put it online or we’d get sued!

    have they changed that now?

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