New Zealand city renames itself 'The Middle of Middle-earth'

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WELLINGTON, New Zealand (AP) – The capital of New Zealand is billing itself as the capital of all things Hobbit. Wellington, New Zealand, will unofficially rename itself “The Middle of Middle-earth” for three weeks surrounding the world premiere of “The Hobbit” movie.

That name will be used on postmarks and on the masthead of Wellington’s main newspaper. The city will host an artisan festival selling items for small folk and lay a 500-yard red carpet through central Wellington.

“The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey” was filmed throughout New Zealand. The movie premieres there on Nov. 28.

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