The Evening Post
February 14, 2000NZ Film Earnings Near $1b
Earnings from making the movies Lord Of The Rings and The
Vertical Limit could push New Zealand's annual film earnings close to a billion dollars
The Screen Producers and Directors Association (SPADA) said
its latest survey showed earnings from the production of film, TV and commercials would
top $307 million to March 2000 - up 50 percent on the 1998-99 fiscal year.
Its survey, however, doesn't include Peter Jackson's Lord Of
The Rings (estimated to be worth more than $350 million) nor The Vertical Limit (estimated
at $120 million-plus) as filming didn't take place within the survey period. Neither does
it include large amounts of in-house network product of new current affairs and sport.
SPADA chief executive Jane Wrightson said the survey showed
the screen production industry was a high-growth prospect for the economy.
Foreign exchange earnings from screen production were up 67
percent, to $155 million annually.
As well as making large contributions to New Zealand's
economy, overseas- funded films helped improve the skills of local film personnel, she
SPADA welcomed news that the Government was considering
supporting a film investment fund. Prime Minister Helen Clark said the Government and New
Zealand Film Commission were finalising a fund to help get more movie projects underway.