Mark Johnson Talks About The Film

Unknown person and Mark Johnson

Unknown person and Mark Johnson

Before us is a Christmas card setting – pine trees and artificial snow, with rudimentary igloo shaped structures.

It’s a scene from the $170 million film The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe – all under the roof of a large shed in Wainui.

Producer Mark Johnson, who also brought Rain Man, Good Morning, Vietnam and Bugsy to the screen, walks out of the rain, which is making such a racket on the tin roof it’s too hard to film.

If we were hoping for a peek of the actors, we’re out of luck. Visitors are rarely allowed past the tight security and onto the set.

Mark’s only got a few minutes but obligingly poses for pictures.

He singles New Zealand out as one of friendliest countries in the world – and he’s been to many others.

“I’m very happy with the reception here. We’ve been made to feel welcome from the man-in-the-street to municipal level.”

Work started at Wainui in March and is expected to finish next month.

Mark says 25 days of the 100-day shoot are in the shed.

About 500 people are working on the production.

“We had 10 full-time greensmen working for 10 weeks to set up 200 trees alone.”

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