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'The Lord of the Rings'(TM) Trading Card Game to Feature Original Images From Weta Workshop

The Award-Winning Studio That Created Special Effects for the Film Trilogy Will Design Images of Characters Not Yet Seen Exclusively for the Game

Tom Bombadil Card Weta Workshop, the Academy Award- winning special effects studio responsible for creating many props and special effects used in New Line Cinema's "The Lord of the Rings" films has now created unique photographic images of characters not depicted in the movies for use in "The Lord of the Rings" Trading Card Game. The award-winning crew cast, costumed, and created character images earlier this year at their workshop in New Zealand for the popular strategy card game created and manufactured by Norfolk, Va.-based Decipher.

Characters included in this exclusive photo shoot included: Tom Bombadil, the enigmatic character who saved the Hobbits before they got to Bree in the first novel of the J.R.R. Tolkien epic; Goldberry, Tom Bombadil's wife; Radagast, Gandalf's wizard peer; Glorfindel, the original elf who took Frodo to Rivendell; and Elrohir and Elladan, sons of Elrond; among others. The original images will begin to appear on cards introduced in trading card game sets beginning in May 2004.

"We are extremely honored to have Weta involved in bringing these characters to life through our trading card game," said Warren Holland, Decipher's Chief Executive Officer.

"Richard Taylor and his team in New Zealand have created some of the most outstanding special effects in the history of film. We are looking forward to the wonders that they will create for our game, further extending Middle-earth for TCG players, as well as J.R.R. Tolkien fans and collectors."

Richard Taylor, Director of Weta Workshop, said, "Weta Workshop is very excited about the challenge of creating these wonderful new characters for Decipher's 'The Lord of the Rings' Trading Card Game. We wanted to create many of these characters for the films, but obviously the limitations of screen time prevented that from happening. These are characters the fans have been clamoring to see and now they can exclusively through Decipher's game." He continued, "Staying loyal to the words of J.R.R. Tolkien has been enormously important to us in everything that we have created for the film trilogy -- and we intend to do the same with the images that we will create for Decipher."

Creating almost every aspect of Middle-earth, Weta Workshop designed and produced over 1,200 hand-made suits of armor, 2,000 weapons, miniatures, and prosthetic feet and ears that helped create the authenticity manifested in the films. In addition, Weta Workshop was responsible for the creation of 12 major creatures, including such computer-generated characters as Gollum and Treebeard.

Source: Decipher Inc.
Date: March 15, 2004

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