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The One Ring Forums: Tolkien Topics: Northern Mine Barrage :
Does the MEAA have legitimate complaints?
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Gandalf'sMother
Rigger

Oct 24 2010, 6:16am

Post #1 of 83 (877 views)
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Does the MEAA have legitimate complaints? Can't Post

For most of us who followed it, the Lord of the Rings team seemed to be quite a happy one. However, the labor dispute over "The Hobbit" led me to do some research on whether or not there had been complaints about sub-par working conditions during LOTR. It seems there were - mainly from extras, and members of the New Zealand defense forces.

There's some very interesting material on "employment protection" and seemingly substandard working conditions for employees in this 2002 article: http://www.wsws.org/...r2002/lor2-m21.shtml

The question for this thread is, therefore: Are there actions PJ and co. could have taken to address the issues brought forward by the MEAA? I think this is an important question to ask, particularly given that this website has clearly gotten behind the campaign to keep the production in New Zealand. I also think it should stay in New Zealand, but not at the expense of humane working conditions. IMO, if PJ and co\ can strike a deal with MEAA, and draw up an MOU between the parties wherein the MEAA agrees to refrain from disrupting filming once it starts, provided that some of the basic MEAA demands are met, there may be no reason whatsoever for Warner to take this offshore.

Some excerpts from the article:

- "Barrie M. Osborne, the US producer of The Lord of the Rings, also told the Wellington press conference that local labour laws should be more “flexible” so that film producers could instantly fire employees they were not satisfied with. New Zealand employment laws, he complained, did not sufficiently define the difference between independent contractors and employed staff. Film producers, Osborne said, need to be able to terminate contractors who weren’t “working out” with minimum notice. This was “difficult” if they were regarded as employees."

- "According to Osborne: “You may have a great assistant director but that assistant director might not have the personality to work with Peter Jackson. You might have a great editor but that editor might not have the personality. You don’t discover that until you start working.” The solution, he said, was to give film employers “the right to terminate employment or contract with minimal notice, i.e., a week’s notice”."

- "...Anna Wilding, a Hollywood-based actor, producer and film consultant, who visited New Zealand during production of The Lord of the Rings, complained publicly that locals hired to supply and ride horses in the film were treated like “slave labour”."

- " The riders, who received daily rates of $NZ200 and meals, would have been paid at least $500 plus allowances in the US. Moreover, the extras were left to sleep in tents and horse floats in the bitterly cold South Island climate, without being paid float fees or allowances for working away from home."

- "...One officer, an army weapons technician who was second-in-command of 140 soldiers on the set recently complained to the Sunday Star Times about exploitation of the soldiers. He said they worked long hours, were not given scheduled days off and had no choice about being involved. Soldiers from Waiouru and Linton army camps had received only “a T-shirt and a few pints of beer.”"


(This post was edited by Silverlode on Oct 24 2010, 4:02pm)


Elizabeth
Quartermaster


Oct 24 2010, 8:27am

Post #2 of 83 (461 views)
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Hard to tell from that article. [In reply to] Can't Post

NZ law does apparently draw significant distinctions between contractors and employees, and I suspect Barrie Osborne may have been unfamiliar with the details. They certainly managed to fire Stuart Townsend when they needed to.

It's wildly inappropriate to compare pay rates in NZ with rates in the US, where "normal" rates are probably quite different, as is the cost of living. For that matter, pay scales for many jobs are different here in Hawaii as compared with, say, California, where I used to live!

As for the poor soldiers, they're ... well, soldiers. They do what they're told, and the MEAA (which is an Australian union) certainly has no influence on how New Zealand soldiers are used.






Sign up now in the Reading Room to lead a chapter discussion of LotR Book II!

Elizabeth is the TORnsib formerly known as 'erather'


SirDennisC
First Mate


Oct 24 2010, 8:34am

Post #3 of 83 (475 views)
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Well [In reply to] Can't Post

I remember one soldier on the LOTR EEs didn't seem all too happy with the gig. I also remember thinking in response to his obvious discomfort about how many people would have killed to be involved with that film.

But I think that is part of the problem really, and in part may account for the general lack of sympathy towards the union action. Even before questions of the union's competency or possible motives came to light, before NZ's labour laws were understood, or before the threat of a move was made, there seemed to be very little support. I'm sure the general lack of support can't be entirely explained away as good ole union bashing.

Interesting piece though. I've often wondered about the kinds of deals that are struck when using soldiers as extras. The practice is common enough when making epics, regardless of where they are made.


miss_jj
Lubber

Oct 24 2010, 10:03am

Post #4 of 83 (451 views)
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but did they care about the conditions they faced? [In reply to] Can't Post

 
in regards to the riders and horses.

How many of those people really cared about of the conditons though? Sure someone from the outside looks in and see all these unfair conditions,but did the people involve really care? or were they in it for the fun and awesome experience.

hell,i wouldn't care what i got paid to work on LOTR,I would do it for the sheer fun and experience.

the locals would have been well aware of the conditions that would face them and their horses while out there, and where would you find adequete shelter for the hundreds of riders in the middle of nowhere?


macfalk
Quartermaster


Oct 24 2010, 10:06am

Post #5 of 83 (440 views)
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I dont see anything wrong in [In reply to] Can't Post

bashing this particular union.



The greatest adventure is what lies ahead.


dormouse
First Mate

Oct 24 2010, 10:07am

Post #6 of 83 (461 views)
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Well..... [In reply to] Can't Post

... as with everything else, you have to take the article in context, not in isolation - every reporter is going to put up a good case for the issues as he or she sees it.

The first thing that occurs to me is that the MEAA is not a New Zealand union and that seems to me to negate any case it puts forward: we certainly wouldn't accept intervention from an overseas union in this country and I don't suppose any other country would either - and it seems that MEAA jumped into this without consulting the members of its NZ affiliate, NZ Actors Equity. That was bad practice and it turned the whole thing into a mess from the start. MEAA has no right to be demanding anything of people in another country.

Should actors, technicians, everyone who works on a film be treated fairly? Yes, of course they should. But whatever happened in the past (and I think it's a given that you will always be able to find someone who is dissatisfied with something, wherever, whatever), to date no one appears to have said that there is anything wrong with the pay and conditions being offered for 'The Hobbit' - surely that's the issue? If I've understood any of this, the unions want to change the way actors' employment is organised in New Zealand and one producer on one film can't do that for them. the Hobbit has been picked as a high profile target that will give them lots of publicity - to look for a case against Peter Jackson after the fact won't really get anyone anywhere.


SirDennisC
First Mate


Oct 24 2010, 10:19am

Post #7 of 83 (440 views)
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Well said [In reply to] Can't Post

your perspective is a breath of fresh air, truly.

I wonder how many LOTR workers were represented by MEAA?


Hellmistress
Able Seaman


Oct 24 2010, 10:47am

Post #8 of 83 (467 views)
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Agreed ... [In reply to] Can't Post

... in amongst all of the present hoo-hah there is a core of discontent that is being ridden over in the desire to keep THE HOBBIT in New Zealand - a laudable desire, and one which I generally agree with for aesthetic reasons, but it has truly highlighted (highlit??) the fundamental disagreements that were mooted by MEAA and other unions. Peter Jackson was vocal enough when he wasn't getting his dues from LotR during a very public legal wrangle. This is the same wrangle but it is about the little people. The fact that WB is thinking about moving production (as typical a threat as a studio can offer) means they have NZ and its fledgling film making industry over a barrel, or so it thinks. Sadly this whole megrim has been mishandled on all sides and has been blown out of all proportion - and at the risk of being boo'd off the stage, I think that even if TH remains in NZ, the country and its film-making industry will have to stop resting on its Tolkien laurels and compete realistically with the rest of the film-making world - and that means dealing with unions and everything else. It is an industry, a business ... not a magical place where fairytales happen every day and all is rosy. Films are made to make money. They have to compete financially with every other film-making business out there. 'We made LotR' as a cry of quality isn't going to last forever, WETA will have to come out of its Wellington base and travel world-wide to keep its head above water, and NZ is going to have to rethink both its union laws and filming policies to be able to compete. I really think this is a wake-up call that will linger until well after TH is re-issued as a 25th Anniversary Final Director's Cut. Sorry to be so downbeat, but I feels it in me waters, and it ain't going away.

HM




In Reply To
your perspective is a breath of fresh air, truly.

I wonder how many LOTR workers were represented by MEAA?



Huan71
Able Seaman

Oct 24 2010, 1:22pm

Post #9 of 83 (392 views)
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Well, it is a job .... [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
How many of those people really cared about of the conditons though? Sure someone from the outside looks in and see all these unfair conditions,but did the people involve really care? or were they in it for the fun and awesome experience.

hell,i wouldn't care what i got paid to work on LOTR,I would do it for the sheer fun and experience.

the locals would have been well aware of the conditions that would face them and their horses while out there, and where would you find adequete shelter for the hundreds of riders in the middle of nowhere?


....like any other. It doesn't matter if its acting in a big movie or stacking shelves at your local supermarket...it's still a job. For you (and many others here) it would be a hobby, an ambition, a dream even. But it is employment, and like any other workplace, should be subject to the appropriate employment law for that country...
Maybe most were happy on the LotR's film Set's, i don't know..?


Gandalf'sMother
Rigger

Oct 24 2010, 1:31pm

Post #10 of 83 (387 views)
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Is there a way to edit one's posts? [In reply to] Can't Post

I can't seem to find a way...


Gildor
Cabin Boy

Oct 24 2010, 1:33pm

Post #11 of 83 (389 views)
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well said... [In reply to] Can't Post

I think there's so much more going on here than meets the eye. A few thoughts and concerns:

1. So many fans and aspiring actors have a proclaimed, "I'd work on the movie for free for love!" I think this is an unrealistic proposition for a major film. This approach has been done for a couple quite well done fan films (The Hunt for Gollum, Born of Hope) but they are what they are, fan films. Real professional actors and production/editing staff don't just go around choosing major movies they love and then work for free for a couple years. Implying that workers should just be mum about their conditions b/c 1000's would do it for free just for the love of it is disrespectful to professionals.

2. Thank you for reminding us that PJ was vocal and disruptive when he needed his considerable piece of pie. Indeed, he was willing to throw The Hobbit production down the toilet if he didn't get his mega millions. Did he deserve the money? Sure, but so too do the little guys deserve proper treatment and pay (which for the most part I think they got but obviously there were verified situations of complaint and concern).

3. Someone on another thread (sorry can't remember who) mentioned that it is possible that WB is using the MEAA/Union dispute has cover for moving the production elsewhere. Obviously no one is copping to this, so don't expect some producer to come out and confirm it. But I don't get it, there are union disputes and issues everywhere, why would this be the sole reason for moving production? It is obvious that PJ has little control over this, so why would WB let him in on the conceit? The idea that New Zealand is a mystical magical land of movie perfection is silly, and if all it takes is one labor dispute (however mangled its presentation to the public was) to derail the project, then New Zealand movie making is in trouble.

4. Keeping TH in NZ is a laudable goal for Kiwis and for psychological continuity with LOTR. But it isn't necessary in order to insure a great two films, and when the movies come out it won't really matter to most fans. As I said above, if one labor dispute makes WB move production, then maybe NZ isn't so perfect after all, and maybe NZ has more work to do to make it a truly desirable place to make movies.

5. It occurs to me that the behind the scenes footage on LOTR EE's are quite a good propaganda piece. Almost no hints of trouble are presented (minus Sean Astin and his whining), and everyone is just in love with moviemaking and all the long hours! It really presents the staff as mostly one big happy NZ family and NZ as movie making heaven. This was a smart move!


Nesse
Able Seaman

Oct 24 2010, 1:38pm

Post #12 of 83 (398 views)
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It might depend though on the actors... [In reply to] Can't Post

If acting was my bread and butter and my family depended on the money I made from it sure I could understand but if I was an extra for whom this was probably a one off chance to be in a movie I would gladly do it for 4 square meals a day and expenses.


Flagg
Sailing Master


Oct 24 2010, 1:44pm

Post #13 of 83 (357 views)
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I think you can only do it within ten minutes of posting. // [In reply to] Can't Post

 


Peredhil lover
Quartermaster


Oct 24 2010, 1:45pm

Post #14 of 83 (376 views)
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Well [In reply to] Can't Post


Quote
- " The riders, who received daily rates of $NZ200 and meals, would have been paid at least $500 plus allowances in the US. Moreover, the extras were left to sleep in tents and horse floats in the bitterly cold South Island climate, without being paid float fees or allowances for working away from home."


While I have never been involved with any filming, I've been a participant in a riding show many years ago. We did a show twice daily during a huge trade fair. Which means, we had to take a week off work and to be on site for nine days or commute from our home towns. Plus, we had to get the horses there, build paddocks, and the ones who stayed as horse guards slept in their horse trailer or in a camper - in the later case on benches not much broader than the ones sleeping on them. Not very comfortable, really - I was one of them, so I know. For all that, we got free meals and a pocket money of approximately US $70. For all nine days together, not per day, mind you. BUT we had a lot of fun, and we'd have done it for free. Heck, many of us would even have paid for being able to be involved. So I could very well imagine that these riders in NZ did it for the same reason - they wanted to be involved in some way, and the payment wasn't the most important part of it.



I do not suffer from LotR obsession - I enjoy every minute of it.

TORn Link Collection
TORn Travelling Journal website


Peredhil lover
Quartermaster


Oct 24 2010, 1:50pm

Post #15 of 83 (363 views)
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Either you can do it yourself [In reply to] Can't Post

for a time window of 10 minutes after posting, or you can ask one of the Admins to do it. For that, either send one who might be online (you can see that when you click the button above) a PM or make a post on Feedback, provide the link to the post and what you want to have changed.



I do not suffer from LotR obsession - I enjoy every minute of it.

TORn Link Collection
TORn Travelling Journal website


Nesse
Able Seaman

Oct 24 2010, 1:52pm

Post #16 of 83 (365 views)
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my thoughts exactly [In reply to] Can't Post

If a movie came to my town and I could get time off to take part I would jump at the chance, its always something to tell your grandkids right?


Hellmistress
Able Seaman


Oct 24 2010, 2:39pm

Post #17 of 83 (360 views)
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However ... [In reply to] Can't Post

... having both been on film sets and done the horsey thing away from home, there is a big difference to having a set length of time away from home and putting up with the discomfort - any hobbyist does that, and yes, it's worth it. But a film set isn't a hobby. Often there can be days when you've been up and ready to go since 4am, you hang about for 18 hours or even more (and you can't be away from the set in case you're needed), if it's a location shoot there is only very basic accomodation, and then at the very last moment the director decides you're not needed. 'Come back tomorrow.' And you can do that for WEEKS. You're in makeup, perhaps working in snow/rain/blistering heat/blizzard conditions, you have to hit your mark, not get in peoples' way or other actors' eyelines, do exactly as you're told no matter how many times the director changes his mind and mucks you about (and they do that a LOT, as artistic people are wont to do as their vision of the scene alters or flows differently), cope with the constant reshuffling of equipment and a gazillion other distractions. If you're dealing with animals, the problems multiply enormously. It's a job, and it can be a very hard one - even if you're 'just' an extra. And as far as I'm aware it wasn't just the extras who were getting short-changed on the LotR.

Another thing - just because you might just have the time of your life (and I can well believe that is true, as some of the best times of my life have been on a film set), doesn't mean that those who do this for a living have to put up with working conditions that would have you, in your 'normal' job, shouting and marching and striking in protest. We who are not in the Biz really don't have any right to tell those of us who do rely on film work to put food on the table to thank their lucky stars they're working on THE HOBBIT. And with a $500 million budget, they can darn well afford to do the right thing.

All I'm saying is yes, it would be lovely to keep TH in NZ and I hope they do, for continuity if for no other reason. But remember there is an underlying reason for all of this upset that I don't think is going to go away. NZ has rested on its Tolkien laurels for a long time, and I don't think it can continue. It is a magnificent country with wonderful scenery, a hard-working people and lots of vision and foresight. Put that to work and thing long and hard, NZ, about where you want to go in the film industry. You have the goods to sell, just don't let yourself fall into the trap of being a one-trilogy location. If this hoo-hah has done anything positive, it is hopefully make those involved in the government of NZ and its budding film industry sit up and listen, and realise that it HAS to compete properly on the world stage ... include thinking about unions and the people the film industry employs. Good luck to you - I know you can do it!

HM




In Reply To

Quote
- " The riders, who received daily rates of $NZ200 and meals, would have been paid at least $500 plus allowances in the US. Moreover, the extras were left to sleep in tents and horse floats in the bitterly cold South Island climate, without being paid float fees or allowances for working away from home."


While I have never been involved with any filming, I've been a participant in a riding show many years ago. We did a show twice daily during a huge trade fair. Which means, we had to take a week off work and to be on site for nine days or commute from our home towns. Plus, we had to get the horses there, build paddocks, and the ones who stayed as horse guards slept in their horse trailer or in a camper - in the later case on benches not much broader than the ones sleeping on them. Not very comfortable, really - I was one of them, so I know. For all that, we got free meals and a pocket money of approximately US $70. For all nine days together, not per day, mind you. BUT we had a lot of fun, and we'd have done it for free. Heck, many of us would even have paid for being able to be involved. So I could very well imagine that these riders in NZ did it for the same reason - they wanted to be involved in some way, and the payment wasn't the most important part of it.



(This post was edited by Hellmistress on Oct 24 2010, 2:43pm)


LoremIpsum
Able Seaman


Oct 24 2010, 2:43pm

Post #18 of 83 (368 views)
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What about Avatar, Narnia, King Kong [In reply to] Can't Post

and many other big and small budget productions shot/made in NZ?
How exactly is NZ resting on its Tolkien laurels?

NZ = MIDDLE EARTH


(This post was edited by LoremIpsum on Oct 24 2010, 2:43pm)


Hellmistress
Able Seaman


Oct 24 2010, 2:51pm

Post #19 of 83 (346 views)
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Well ... [In reply to] Can't Post

Simply because the LotR is the one NZ brags about, quite rightly. I flew to LA using NZ airlines, and the 'plane had Frodo plastered all over it. None of these other films uses NZ quite as spectacularly as the LotR, nor are they as epic. And to be frank, the Narnia films & King Kong were nowhere near the blockbusters they were mooted to be. Avatar is green-screen, so it could have been made anywhere. It just so happened the team that did the digital FX are NZ-based. Oh, and it really isn't much of a film, other than being pretty to look at. LotR is the project that put NZ on the map, and it is the one everyone brags about, which is quite right. But it won't last forever, is all I'm saying. TH is the film that they hope will put NZ back on the map - which it probably will, if filming remains in the country. But life goes on, and the hype won't last forever, and I hope that a lesson has been learned that will stand NZ and its filmic talents (including the scenery!) in good stead.

HM


In Reply To
and many other big and small budget productions shot/made in NZ?
How exactly is NZ resting on its Tolkien laurels?



squire
Quartermaster


Oct 24 2010, 3:01pm

Post #20 of 83 (361 views)
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The value of propaganda [In reply to] Can't Post

You make a good point about the propaganda value of the cast and crew commentaries in the LotR DVD's. I have led a couple of discussions on them on the Movie board here (see the links in my footer). Both times there were innumerable subjects, approaches, and issues that occurred to me from my own film-making experience, having to do with the inevitable conflicts of interest, power, competence, and credit that are common to all enterprises, that were completely ignored by the features. As you say, the features present an impossibly happy picture - doable largely because the films were very successful. In such cases any infighting and unhappiness is usually forgotten fairly quickly. How different it would have been had the films flopped!

I don't doubt that the positive stories and emotions in the commentaries are sincere. I am not saying that Jackson and company were bad bosses. I only maintain that the commentaries leave almost all negativity out, which is clearly a biased presentation, and done for obvious commercial reasons. The success of the approach is visible here among the fan community. We have only the commentaries to go by, and most here evidently love the commentaries for reinforcing, with their charming and happy stories about the cast and crew's experiences and memories, the feel-good vibes we got from the films themselves.

Nothing "wrong" with all that - it does however affect our perceptions of what is actually involved in making a Tolkien movie in New Zealand. "It was obviously tons of fun from start to finish! Why is anyone complaining about the working conditions?? I'd do it for free, to be part of that magic!" Yes, filmmaking can be fun, and yes, memories become selective once the final product is out. Nightmare working conditions become funny stories - I call them "war stories" for the way they similarly edit the horror of the moment out, leaving only the compensatory sense of humor.



squire online:
RR Discussions: The Valaquenta, A Shortcut to Mushrooms, and Of Herbs and Stewed Rabbit
Lights! Action! Discuss on the Movie board!: 'A Journey in the Dark'. and 'Designing The Two Towers'.
Footeramas: The 3rd (and NOW the 4th too!) TORn Reading Room LotR Discussion; and "Tolkien would have LOVED it!"
squiretalk introduces the J.R.R. Tolkien Encyclopedia: A Reader's Diary


= Forum has no new posts. Forum needs no new posts.


dormouse
First Mate

Oct 24 2010, 3:37pm

Post #21 of 83 (331 views)
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It's true of anything, isn't it [In reply to] Can't Post

... once the nightmare part of any project or experience is over you focus on the good things and the reasons you were doing it. Or walk away.

I don't agree entirely that the DVDs present an impossibly happy picture. On Return of the King particularly they do show you something of how close to the deadlines they came and how overwhelming the pressure was; there are comments about the numbers of broken relationships and other traumas working on the films left in their wake, if anyone had counted. Working on that film has never looked much like fun to me - except in the sense that when you're working with other people in extreme circumstances like that the bonds forged between you tend to be deeper and more lasting. as someone who almost always works alone, that's an intriguing thing to watch. But I don't think anyone could sit through that final set of documentaries and think how much fun they were having.


Tim
Sailing Master


Oct 24 2010, 4:01pm

Post #22 of 83 (331 views)
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It's always interesting to me how differently other people view things than I do [In reply to] Can't Post

Propaganda? Undoubtedly. But I never got an overwhelming sense they were all having fun - rather it was a difficult proposition that a bunch of regular hardworking people pulled together and made happen. I guess because of how I'm glued together, moments like Liv Tyler looking exhausted on a fake horse and "stunties" falling asleep in uncomfortable chairs kinda stuck with me more than anything. Sean Bean intimating he had to write script changes on his hand because they were so frequent is just one thing of many that impressed to me the controlled chaos aspect of this film making experience.

King Arthur: Who are you who can summon fire without flint or tinder?
Tim: There are some who call me... Tim?


Gildor
Cabin Boy

Oct 24 2010, 4:24pm

Post #23 of 83 (347 views)
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the best way I can relate... [In reply to] Can't Post

I agree that the commentaries do show hardship and long hours, but it's masked in a kind of 'it's tough but we love it because this is so great' kind of attitude.

A recent personal experience I feel relates somewhat:

I bicycled 111 miles on behalf of charity for MS (almost 7 hours on a bike!). I loved it! It was an amazing experience! But I was also exhausted, had major calf cramps by the end of it, and didn't digest food well for a couple days as a result of the strain. Would I do it again? Yes! I then imagine if the MS Society put a short documentary together to advertise the event, I think they would focus on the camaraderie, fellowship, and finish line. I doubt they would focus on me struggling to get to a rest stop with one leg because for a few miles the cramps were so bad that I couldn't use my left leg; or that I rode about 50 miles of it almost completely alone with no other riders to offer psychological support.

It's funny how I initially completely discounted Sean Astin's "There and Back Again" book. I thought he was just a hardcore whiner, and overboard. PJ thought so too. But now I wonder if he was just willing to voice his negative thoughts more so that others.


AngryDwarf
Swabbie

Oct 24 2010, 5:15pm

Post #24 of 83 (313 views)
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Why don't they name it then? [In reply to] Can't Post

 
Surely there could be bad working conditions in The Hobbit (or LOTR for that matter) that would need addressing.

But how comes, Simon Whipp says "it was never about the Hobbit"

Either the unions have some legitimate issues (concerning The Hobbit production) then they need to name it and would be entitled to any industrial action against The Hobbit that would be necessary to address those.

But to march against The Hobbit in full attack mode only to explain then that they wanted to achieve complete different and unrelated goals (unionization of the entire industry, changing employment laws(?), and improving contracts for theater actors) is outrageous!

And there is no legitimate cause for their attack on The Hobbit production in full accordance to their own statements!

So what the heck did they do then other than completely bashing up the wrong bush for the wrong reasons with no cause and no justification - wreaking havoc and disaster as they go along!

Disgusting!
This union really deserves to be beaten out of the country for good. Regardless of any valid labor concerns that might deserve to be addressed!

And any stupid actor supporting this "it was only a legitimate request for talks" charade hopefully will never find work again in NZ.

If the production moves out of NZ, the only ones to blame are the involved unions!
Yes, maybe Warner just wants to seize the opportunity to cut costs and move the production elsewhere - but never forget that the unions loaded the gun and handed them to Warner.
Even if Warner shoots the Hobbit now, the unions are still responsible for organizing and loading the gun that The Hobbit will be shot with!

Let there be no misunderstanding about THAT!

.


someone please whip the Whipp!


Hellmistress
Able Seaman


Oct 24 2010, 5:58pm

Post #25 of 83 (286 views)
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I don't think ... [In reply to] Can't Post

... we will know for a long time (if ever) as to what exactly has gone on, considering the plethora of misinformation being bandied about by the media and various interested parties. There do seem to be grievances that need addressing, but everyone involved (unions, studios, individuals) seem to have been swept along by the flames of shrieking antipathy fanned by the media who have been like wargs amongst sheep. It is a media circus of the best/worst kind, depending whose side you're on, and because the film has such support among countless fans who just want to see the film made after so many delays, the media have leapt upon the whole thing and dragged it down into the mire. Of course all parties concerned have jumped onto the bandwagon, and it has become a disgraceful melee that should never have happened. The genuine grievances and concerns have become sidelined, sadly. But as I have already said, it has highlighted the weaknesses of the project and how fragile an industry the Biz is at the best of times - and in the present financial climate, the pressure is higher than ever.

NZ will have to address them somewhere along the line, hopefully when things have died down and progress is made. All I'm saying is think long-term, and not just about TH. I hope lessons have been learned by ALL parties, and I also hope that the promises made to actors regarding contracts are kept - it's a great first step in the right direction, and I hope that NZ law and also the industry sorts itself out and finds a happy balance - actors and artisans who get a decent comparable wage with good conditions, to which they are entitled just like everyone else. Just because one works in movies doesn't mean you have to get less money/conditions than someone who works in the store down the road, because you happen to love what you do.

HM

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