Cameras start rolling in Wellington on Monday on The Hobbit films directed by Sir Peter Jackson.
Despite an industrial dispute, a defecting director and part financial backer MGM filing for bankruptcy protection, the $660 million production is finally getting under way.
Stone Street Studios in the Wellington suburb of Miramar will be the location for most of the initial filming.
Outdoor scenes are being shot in secret locations throughout the country.
Mark Harrison, one of the organisers of last year's protest march to keep the two films in New Zealand, says there has not been much gossip coming out about the movie, and it seems people are just relieved to be getting on with the project.