Peter Jackson gets Hollywood star
The year was 1974 and a wide-eyed 12-year-old New Zealander on holiday in the US with his parents was wandering along Hollywood Boulevard marvelling at the iconic actors and filmmakers' stars embedded in the sidewalk.
The kid was Peter Jackson.
Forty years later, Jackson realised a dream when he was back on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.
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The three-time Oscar-winning New Zealand filmmaker was presented with his own star in a prime position on the famed sidewalk.
"It was 1974 and 40 years ago, I walked along the street and looked at these stars and never, ever in my wildest dreams thought I would ever find myself here today to receive a star," Jackson told a crowd of fans, film executives and stars of his Lord of the Rings and Hobbit films.
Underlining his importance to the Hollywood film industry, Jackson received prime real estate on Hollywood Boulevard.
His star is located outside the home of the Academy Awards ceremony, the Dolby Theatre, and sits near those of A-listers Nicole Kidman and Steven Spielberg.
Jackson's Lord of the Rings and Hobbit trilogies, based on JRR Tolkien's fantasy books, have taken almost $US5 billion at the global box office, with the final chapter, The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies, opening this week.
Warner Bros studio boss Kevin Tsujihara joked New Zealand should be renamed New Jackson.
Andy Serkis, the actor who brought the character of Gollum to the screen, said his life changed when he met Jackson in London prior to filming the first Lord of the Rings film in 2001.
"You said you weren't sure exactly how we were going to achieve what we wanted to do, but it would be fun," Serkis told Jackson.
"The next thing I remember was being half way up a mountain in a green unitard in front of 200 very hard-arsed Kiwi crew, 6000 feet up, and Peter, you were laughing at me."
Other stars and key players from the Lord of the Rings and Hobbit movies attending the star ceremony were Orlando Bloom, Evangeline Lilly, Lee Pace, Luke Evans, Richard Armitage, Elijah Wood, Jackson's producer wife, Fran Walsh and writer Philippa Boyens.