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'Lord of the Rings' director becomes knight

By the CNN Wire Staff
Oscar-winning writer/director Peter Jackson was knighted Wednesday in New Zealand.
Oscar-winning writer/director Peter Jackson was knighted Wednesday in New Zealand.
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • "Lord of the Rings" writer/director Peter Jackson knighted in New Zealand
  • "Lord Of The Rings" trilogy was largely filmed in New Zealand
  • Jackson is currently working on "The Hobbit"
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(CNN) -- Peter Jackson, the Oscar-winning writer and director of "The Lord of the Rings" trilogy, was knighted in his native New Zealand.

The knighthood was conferred on Jackson on Wednesday for his services to film at a ceremony at the Premier House in Wellington.

New Zealand's head of state Gov. Gen. Sir Anand Satyanand honored Jackson in place of Queen Elizabeth II. New Zealand's knights and dames are sanctioned by the queen, the country's official head of state.

"The Lord Of The Rings" trilogy, which won 17 Academy Awards, including best director, adapted screenplay and best picture for Jackson for the final chapter, "The Return of the King," was largely filmed in New Zealand and showcased the country's natural scenery. The project broke box-office records around the world and prompted a spike in tourism to New Zealand.

Jackson grew up in Pukerua Bay on the North Island of the country.

Jackson is currently working with Mexican director Guillermo del Toro on "The Hobbit," a two-movie prequel to "The Lord of the Rings." "The Hobbit" is based on a book by author J.R.R. Tolkien.