Wind in the Wellywood Willows Toad, Badger, Rat and Mole are to be brought to life by Weta Workshop of ‘Wellywood’ in a big-screen adaptation of The Wind in the Willows.
The film is said to be a mix of animatronics and live action, with Weta responsible for making the life-like robots for the production.
Filming will begin in New Zealand at the end of the year.
Special effects Sir Richard Taylor, the founder of Weta Workshop, will be responsible for special effects and Oscar-winning Kiwi Kim Sinclair is acting as production designer.
The Wind in the Willows centres on the story of four furry friends - Toad, Badger, Rat and Mole, and their adventurous journey towards learning the true value of friendship.
In the script, written by Bill Marsilli, the friends band together to save their land from a sinister plot to destroy an uneasy truce between the peaceful animals of the Willows and what remains of Mankind.
Winning effects The Wind in the Willows is another prospective blockbuster for the Weta Workshop team which now holds a raft of major awards ......the latest being an Oscar awarded to Weta Digital for best visual effects in 2010 for Avatar - the world’s bestselling movie.
The 3D science-fiction romp was filmed in Wellington, with Weta Digital supervising the special effects and additional live photography carried out on Weta’s sound-stages.
A team of five from Weta Digital, including art director Kim Sinclair, who is also working on The Wind in the Willows, attended the star-studded awards ceremony in Hollywood.
Weta Workshop background Founded in 1987 by prominent Kiwi filmmaker Sir Peter Jackson with Sir Richard Taylor, Tania Rodger and Jamie Selkirk, Weta Workshop is based in Wellington and is New Zealand’s best-known special effects and props company.
Weta Workshop came to the attention of the world stage with the production of The Lord of the Rings movie trilogy, which was filmed entirely in New Zealand. The company made all the sets, costumes, armour, weapons, creatures and miniatures seen in the film.
Now hear this, Hobbit fans