Aussie MP wades into Hobbit row

Photo / Rotorua Daily Post
Photo / Rotorua Daily Post

An Australian opposition MP is wading into the industrial dispute surrounding The Hobbit.

Senator Eric Abetz is accusing the Australian union the Media, Entertainment and Arts Alliance of threatening thousands of film industry jobs on both sides of the Tasman, which could lead to the loss of hundreds of millions of dollars.

He said the union's move to blacklist The Hobbit threatens to derail the entire project.

Mr Abetz is calling on the Australian Government to intervene to ensure the project isn't lost and to safeguard Australian jobs.

The Media, Entertainment and Arts Alliance, which is backing The New Zealand Actors' Equity union, has called for actors worldwide to boycott The Hobbit.

Yesterday, Economic Development Minister Gerry Brownlee and Arts and Culture Minister Chris Finlayson met husband and wife filmmakers Sir Peter Jackson and Fran Walsh at the Beehive to discuss the issue.

No commitments were made but "the minister had said they are available to mediate in getting a solution", a spokesman for Mr Brownlee said.

- Newstalk ZB, NZPA

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