Nadia PetrovaThe idea that movies and television can have a strong effect on tourism has been around forever - and one needs only to look at the crowds of tourists in front of Trump Tower, or to see the masses of Monty Python fans descending upon a Scottish castle to be assured that it's true. The New Zealand Tourism Board is so sure that the Lord of the Rings series will bring people their shores that the movies are actually featured on the commission's official website. Not only is there lots of glowing information about the country, and how environmentally friendly Peter Jackson's productions were, but the site also offers an extensive list of Lord of the Rings tours.

All of that is well and good, and the promotion is doubtless drawing tons of Hobbit-lovers to New Zealand. No one could have expected, however, that the movies would also players. No kidding. Nadia Petrova, one of the fleet of young Russians that is taking over women's tennis (she's currently #10 in the world) decided to play in the upcoming ASB Classic in Auckland because of the Hobbits. Petrova told the tournament's organizers that they "should be very thankful for Lord of the Rings," because it "really influenced [her] decision."

I hope that, at the very least, Peter Jackson is getting small kickbacks.
categories Movies, Cinematical