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New Zealand is set to release commemorative The Hobbit coins ahead of next month's movie release.

The coins, which feature characters such as Bilbo Baggins and Gandalf the wizard will be legal tender in the country, although their face value will be far less than what they will cost, reports New.com.au.

The most expensive of the coins is made from 28.3 grams of gold and will set collectors back $A 2,955. Its face value is just NZ$10, the cheapest is a NZ$1 coin retailing for $A24.

The coins go on sale from November 1 and will no doubt generate much interest among Tolkein fans in the build up to the premiere of the first of the three Peter Jackson-directed Hobbit movies.

Jackson, who was responsible for the Oscar-winning adaptation of Tolkien's The Lord of the Rings trilogy, announced earlier this year that he would make three films from The Hobbit book, rather than two as originally planned.

British actor Martin Freeman, from The Office, plays Bilbo Baggins and other A-listers appearing in the film include Cate Blanchett, Ian McKellen, Barry Humphries, Stephen Fry, and Billy Connolly.

New Zealand saw a surge in tourism after the original trilogy and aimsto repeat the success with the Hobbit movies. They're launching a campaign with a slogan saying the country is '100% Middle Earth'.

Image via Getty


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