Ad of the Day: Tourism New Zealand

A grand new spot fully embraces 'Lord of the Rings' under the theme '100% Middle-earth'

New Zealand, also known as "the Canada of Australia," is famous for a few specific things: sheep, Sauvignon Blanc and as of the last decade, The Lord of the Rings. This year, the first installment of yet another Tolkien book-turned-film, The Hobbit, hits theaters, and New Zealand isn't letting the opportunity to eke out a bit more Middle Earth-inspired tourism go to waste.

Despite its title, "100% Middle-earth," the campaign doesn't just appeal to the ComicCon crowd. In fact, it's not especially Tolkien-esque at all, save for a brief tour of New Zealand's famous Hobbit holes. Rather, the new 60-second spot—from Whybin\TBWA and Curious director Darryl Ward, and narrated by Sir Ian Holm himself (aka, Bilbo Baggins)—attempts to highlight the country's most "magical" aspects. These include the "four-legged creatures that swim," "wizards that turn water into wine" and "metal hawks that soar." Sounds much more enticing than "horses," "vintners" and "helicopters," doesn't it? (The spot is also running in an extended version online that clocks in at more than two minutes.)

So, even if you're more into fine wines and sandy beaches than Gollum and Gandalf, you'll probably find something to enjoy in New Zealand. And if you're one of those die-hard fans who can't wait to see Bilbo hit the big screen this December, go ahead and imagine that those mountain statues are really "protected by gods."


Client: Tourism New Zealand

Agency: Whybin\TBWA, Sydney and Auckland

Executive Creative Director: Andy Blood

Executive Creative Directors: Matty Burton, Dave Bowman (TBWA, Sydney)

Creative Director: Craig Farndale

Digital Creative Director: Ross Howard

Copywriters: Ryan Price, Lucy Morgan, Andy Blood, Tammy Keegan

Art Directors: Cece Chu, Craig Brooks, Andy Blood

Designer: Chris Lewis

Head of Strategy: Hristos Varouhas (TBWA, Sydney)

Senior Planner: Julie McIver

Agency Producer: Jackie Clark

Group Head: Natasja Barclay

Account Director: Mandy Eckford

Senior Account Manager: Julia McKee

Account Executive: Lynlee Smith

TBWA\Digital Arts Network for website:

Creative Director: Mark Zeman

Account Director: Stephanie Creasy

Project Manager: Louise Leitch

Senior Designer: Jonathan Mead

Production Specialists: Andrew Zen, Nigel McHardy

Developers: Sam Kwan, Patrick Li

Production Company: Curious

Director: Darryl Ward

Film Company Producer: Andy Mauger

Film Company Executive Producer: Matt Noonan

Directors of Photography: Lachlan Milne, Darryl Ward

Editor: Tim Mauger

Music Composer, Producer: Dave Whitehead, White Noise Ltd.

Music Engineer, Producer: Mike Gibson, Munki Studios

Audio Post: Digital Post & Factory Studios

Audio Engineer: Clive Broughton

Re-Recording Mixer, Cinema Versions: Mike Hedges, Park Road Post

Colorist: Pete Richie, Toybox

Online: Nigel Mortimer, Curious

Still Photography: Fraser Clements, Match Photography