Weta Group, Wellington, 21 September 2016: The Wellington-based Weta Group of Companies will sponsor the Cinematographer of the Year Award as the major sponsor of October’s New Zealand Cinematography Society (NZCS) Awards.
The Weta Group encompasses Park Road Post Production, Weta Digital, Portsmouth Rentals, Weta Workshop and Stone Street Studios, all located on the Miramar Peninsula in Wellington.
Park Road Chief Executive Cameron Harland said the Group was delighted to be partnering with the NZCS as a natural extension of the collaboration that the Weta Group has with film makers and, in particular, cinematographers.
“As a collective of film making companies we understand and appreciate the technical and creative abilities of cinematographers. It is alongside their work that our businesses have grown and thrived – whether it be working with them to supply camera and lighting packages, or to ensure any props, sets or visual effects work seamlessly into a given scene, or indeed working with them in a grading suite adding the final touches to their work.
“We are proud to support this talented community of New Zealand artists and delighted to see these Awards added to the industry calendar,” he said.
The Weta Group will be the Major National Sponsor and sponsor of the Cinematographer of the Year award at this year’s new awards event.
As part of the awards ceremony on October 15 in Auckland, the Weta Group will also pay a special tribute to Andrew Lesnie, who passed away in April 2015.
Andrew was an Australian cinematographer who became known for his work as the cinematographer for The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit trilogies as well as King Kong, all filmed in New Zealand with director Peter Jackson.
In an earlier tribute, Peter Jackson said Lesnie “created unforgettable, beautiful images on screen, and he did this time and again, because he only ever served what he believed in – he was his own artist, separate from me, but always working generously to make what we were trying to create together better. He was one of the great cinematographers of our time.”
Weta Workshop co-founder and creative director Richard Taylor described Andrew Lesnie as a wonderful and caring person who looked out for the technicians around him, was keen to have a good laugh and keep everyone jollied along even when things were at the most stressful.
“He was someone who endeared himself to everyone he worked with and his vision added to the work of those he worked alongside in bringing these epic stories to life on screen.”
Weta Digital Senior Visual Effects Supervisor Joe Letteri, who worked with Lesnie on The Hobbit and Rise of the Planet of the Apes, said: “Andrew had a unique talent for using light in a way that drew us closer to the characters and made the creation of the fantastic all the more believable.”
Said Cameron Harland: “On behalf of all those he worked with we wanted to acknowledge Andrew and those great qualities he brought to his work, and we look forward to honouring those qualities in the cinematographers nominated for this year’s NZCS Awards.”
About the Weta Group of Companies:
The Weta Group of Companies comprises five companies on the Miramar Peninsula in Wellington, New Zealand: digital visual effects house Weta Digital; design studio and physical effects manufacturing facility Weta Workshop; post production facility Park Road Post Production; with purpose-built filmmaking complex Stone Street Studios and Portsmouth Rentals camera and lighting equipment hire completing the Group offer. Frequently collaborating on large scale film projects while also functioning as independent facilities, these award-winning companies form a filmmaking hub that takes some of the world’s biggest films from first concepts right through to final post production.