UPDATE: Deadline has learned that Radio New Zealand journalist Cushla Norman is in fact invited to the red carpet and press conference for Peter Jackson’s The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey. While we understand a mistake was made in uninviting the reporter, it has been rectified and her credentials have not been revoked. People close to the situation have assured Deadline that there is no media blacklist.
Norman said earlier today that her premiere and press conference credentials had been revoked because of her negative coverage. Separately, Peter Jackson’s The Hobbit production company Wingnut Films told New Zealand’s TV3 “We don’t have — and have never had — any form of media blacklist. That’s not who we are or how we operate.”
Norman said “I received an email from the publicist for Roadshow Film Distributors, Leanda Borrett, and that email said: ‘Unfortunately we’re no longer able to extend an invitation to you to cover the red carpet and press conference as part of The Hobbit junket. We will be looking to find another journalist’.” Norman said Barrett told her “it came from the filmmakers … who decided they didn’t want me covering the red carpet and press conference.” Norman said she asked Barrett “if they were unhappy with my coverage of The Hobbit and she said ‘yes’, and that I could infer that I was doing too many negative stories”. Norman also said Barrett told her “other journalists are involved also, but wouldn’t say how many and whether they were from New Zealand”. Norman’s coverage included four stories on an industrial dispute two years ago and this week’s allegations concerning off-set animal welfare issues which Warner Bros and New Line Cinema swiftly denied.
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