The Evening Post
February 3, 2001

Lord of the Rings Museum in Wellington?
Staff Reporter (Imladris)

Wellington city councillor Mary Varnham will accompany Mayor Mark Blumsky and a private sector delegation to New York next week to try to get permission to use images from The Lord of the Rings.

The meeting with New Line Studios on February 12 will discuss the establishment of a museum in Wellington dedicated to The Lord of the Rings as the city seeks to secure continuing economic returns from the filming of the fantasy trilogy.
. . .

Mr Blumsky is being sponsored by Air New Zealand to attend the meeting.

He told the council that from the outset Ms Varnham had a big involvement in the project, and was behind one of the main initiatives for statues of characters from the film to be made and erected in the city.
. . .

Much of the detail surrounding the project is still shrouded in secrecy as part of intensive biding to secure the rights, he said.

Saatchi and Saatchi chief executive Kevin Roberts and the New Zealand ambassador to Washington, former prime minister Jim Bolger, as well as representatives from film director Peter Jackson’s company Weta Digital will all attend the meeting to lobby on Wellington’s behalf.

"You will know the minute we land [back in New Zealand] whether we have been successful or not," Mr Blumsky said. "It's a yes [or] no. There is no grey area."