• Air New Zealand takes 'Hobbit' branding into the skies


    Officials at Air New Zealand recently unveiled a plane themed around Peter Jackson's upcoming fantasy epic, "The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey," reports NBC News.

    The airline has transformed a Boeing 777-300ER aircraft into a "flying billboard" for the movie, which was filmed entirely on location throughout New Zealand. A large decal inspired by the visuals of Jackson's adaptation will cover the length of the plane, which officials claim is the largest ever design applied to a commercial aircraft. The news source reports that officials at the airline worked closely with visual effects studio Weta Workshop to create the design.

    "It’s very challenging for Air New Zealand to get that brand presence and that awareness because we don’t have a significant marketing budget, so by actually working in partnership with a movie that’s shot in New Zealand and shows New Zealand, it makes perfect sense," said Jodi Williams, head of international marketing for Air New Zealand, as quoted by the news source.

    The announcement signifies the latest step taken by the carrier to promote New Zealand as a tourist destination in anticipation of the film's release in December. According to Fox News, the airline recently released a specially made in-flight safety video themed around the characters of the film that will be screened on all Air New Zealand flights.

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