Taika Waititi Says He ‘Stole’ Equipment From ‘the Hobbit’

  • Taika Waititi told Stephen Colbert how “The Hobbit” helped him complete “What We Do in the Shadows.”
  • Waititi revealed that his crew snuck onto the set of the Peter Jackson movie and stole discarded items.
  • “‘What We Do in the Shadows’ is built out of ‘The Hobbit’ green screen,” he said.

Taika Waititi let it slip on Wednesday’s “The Late Show With Stephen Colbert” that he had to break into the set of “The Hobbit” for the sake of cinema.

The writer-director revealed that he enlisted his crew to sneak onto fellow New Zealand filmmaker Peter Jackson’s mega-blockbuster “The Hobbit” to search for some scraps they could use for his and Jermaine Clement’s 2014 indie hit “What We Do in the Shadows.”

“When I did ‘What We Do in the Shadows,’ when Jemaine and I were shooting that, we didn’t have much money to do that film, and ‘The Hobbit’ had just wrapped,” Waititi explained to Colbert, adding, “Our production designer, in the dead of night, took his crew to ‘The Hobbit’ studios and stole all of the dismantled, broken-down green screens and took all of the timber, and we built a house.”

“‘What We Do in the Shadows’ is built out of ‘The Hobbit’ green screen,” he said.

What We Do in the Shadows

“What We Do in the Shadows.”

Madman Entertainment via YouTube

Waititi, who was initially hesitant to tell the story, added that Jackson likely doesn’t know this happened.

“I had never talked to Peter Jackson about this,” he said. “I don’t know if he knows. I like telling it at parties, that story. But I don’t know if he actually knows.”

Waititi has helmed quite a few big-budget projects since “What We Did in the Shadows” was released eight years ago. He earned an Oscar for penning 2019’s “Jojo Rabbit” and his second “Thor” movie, “Love and Thunder,” hits theaters on July 8. He’s also set to direct an upcoming “Star Wars” movie.




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