News Report

Air New Zealand unveil a Boeing 777-300 in 'Hobbit' Livery

Brandon Farris reports from LAX.


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On Saturday November 24th Air New Zealand unveiled it's all new Hobbit themed 777-300. To lauch the livery the aircraft undertook a brief world tour leaving Auckland for Los Angeles before continuing to London's, Heathrow Airport. The aircraft returned to Auckland and then onto Wellington in time for the World Premier of The Hobbit: an Unexpected Journey on November 28th where it carried out a flypast over the movie theatre being used for the premiere.

Air New Zealand Chief Executive Officer Rob Fyfe says "The imagery, which extends the full length of the 239-foot long aircraft, is simply stunning. This aircraft is going to excite passengers and fans of Sir Peter Jackson's award-winning cinema fantasies alike when it begins regular Air New Zealand services between Auckland, Los Angeles and London from this evening."

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Air New Zealand has a unique partnership with Warner Bros and this is not the first themed aircraft for the airline. In the past It decorated a Boeing 747 to promote the original Lord of the Rings trilogy. The airline will launch a second flying billboard next year utilizing another of its long haul aircraft to celebrate the second movie in this latest trilogy, The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug.

Earlier this month, Air New Zealand also released its Hobbit themed in-flight safety video. An Unexpected Briefing. Created by the Academy Award-winning Weta Workshop and staring cast and crew members from The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey. Also taking part were Air New Zealand's own air and cabin crew. Since it's release the video has become a global YouTube sensation with nearly 10 million views.

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Hundreds of people came to LAX to see the aircraft as it landed and as it was pulled into the gate invited VIPs and press were given a close up tour. The aircraft joins Air New Zealand's "All Blacks," as the world's two largest logo jets. The multicolored decal which covers approximately 75% of the aircraft's fuselage took nearly 400 hours to apply..

New Zealand is the home of Middle-earth and the three Hobbit movies will be hugely important to New Zealand's tourism industry in the next couple of years. International tourists inspired by the movie's spectacular scenery are expected to come, see and experience the landscapes for themselves.

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