Locations crew have begun building the sets for eagerly anticipated action movie X-Men Origins: Wolverine, giving rise to speculation that it will be lights, camera, action in Queenstown in the next few weeks.
Construction is under way on the set at Deer Park Heights, where crew can be seen creating what looks to be a log cabin looking out over Lake Wakatipu. A site office, security hut and portaloos have also been installed in advance of the crew's arrival.
The park's owners could not be reached for comment last night but a family member confirmed that the set is being prepared for Wolverine.
Deer Park Safari's operator Anthony Bush said that he was excited to see another film being made at the site. The company's tour of the park already features visits to locations from The Lord Of the Rings: The Two Towers and a Korean prison set built for Disney children's movie The Rescue in 1986.
"We're really excited to have another film happening on Deer Park," Mr Bush said. "Hopefully we'll be able to add it in to our tour." Mr Bush said filming at the new set, about 100m from the mock prison, will not interfere with his twice-daily tours to the site.
"The set from The Rescue is generally closed off to the public but we get exclusive access. We will still be able to visit the set while Wolverine is filming but you won't be able to see them working from our tour," he said. "Not all of the areas we usually visit will be accessible to us the whole time, we'll move around as the filming does." Mr Bush said that he had no idea when the filming is due to start or how long it will go on for. "They are keeping all of that detail pretty private," he said.
Wolverine will be the fourth in the hugely successful X-Men film series. Australian actor Hugh Jackman will reprise his role as the title character.
- The Southland Times