One hopes the fanbois world-wide will increase the Kiwi's coffers.
But what a waste of money, overall.
New Zealand has issued coins, all legal tender, marked with ElvenDwarven runes and bearing images of scenes and characters from the new Hobbit film trilogy. The coins are of course collectibles, but New Zealand Post describes them as “legal tender commemorative coins.” That means you could plonk them down on a Kiwi bar and …
"I'm curious how Jackson made three movies out of that skinny book. I couldn't make it last six hours if I had to copy it out by hand."
As soon as I heard about the Hobbit movie I had a sinking feeling. There is very little in The Hobbit, a book I hold in high regard, that caters to the sensibilities of todays movie goers. I am going to be interested to see how Gandalf engaging the trolls in confusing discourse until the light of day makes them turn to stone is interpreted by Jackson and his CGI department.
The assault on Dol Guldur by the White Council is going to be included too; it was referred to in the books, but will be detailed in the film.
(They'll probably do it more dramatically than Elrond, Galadriel, and some wizards walking in the gate while Sauron buggers off down an escape tunnel - think Arwen: Warrior Princess™ decapitating orcs and trolls all over the place.)
Won't stop me seeing it though, somewhat annoyingly.
I'm actually quite made that the bugger managed to take a wonderful childrens' book, and turn it into a no-doubt 'epic' trilogy! Filled with unfeasibly CGI hordes and monster dragon armies and probably Sauron making a walk-on cameo, and fuck knows what else?!
So can't help you with the HOW, but the WHY? Money of course, oodles and oodles of lovely cash that these are going to bring in, with the films, and the DVDs, and the toys, and...
I've nothing against special coins being made, or whether they are legal tender or not.
But charging anything above their face value - and especially *that* much above their face value - is utterly insane.
I can understand that they may not be cheap to make, and that they are a limited supply that you would want to charge a premium for. But I don't see why they couldn't have simply been given a higher face value that reflects how much they are priced at.
At today's spot price for gold, more than half the cost of the 3 proofs is in the bullion value of the coins. They'll need a fair chunk of overhang to allow for the increasing value of that. Then there's the premium for the proof. They issued them as legal tender because that makes the collectable as official currency instead of as medallions (for whatever reason this tends to make them worth more as collectibles). Typically the size of the coin is set by the size of the officially circulating piece, regardless of the bullion value of the coin, as is the case with US "silver proof" coinage. The sizes for the coins are usually the result of the last date at which coins were actually minted from gold or silver. I think if they changed the face value of the coin they get into other problems because nobody issues legal tender made from precious metals anymore.
If I had the money, I'd probably buy a set for myself. If I really, really had the money, I'd buy sets for my friends too. But I don't have the money. Might get one of the peasant priced pieces though.
"nobody issues legal tender made from precious metals anymore."
Some low denomination coins are still worth more in scrap metal value than the face value of the coin itself - that's why many countries make it illegal to melt down currency and why many are trying to reduce the number of low denominations they mint at all or what they make them out of (especially copper pennies - UK ones changed to alloys of steel in the 90's)
Of course, silver dollars and gold coins went that way decades ago.
(US coins for example: http://www.coinflation.com/ )
Guess the water they use for brewing is cleaner these days. Many decades ago we visited the local Tui brewery on a school trip and I noted that the river was pretty manky looking (must have been all that dairy effluent going into it) - I expect that gave the beer a bit of body. Though even at that time my Dad reckoned that Tui was a lot waterier than it had been.
I did a look-up on the Wikipedia article (yes I was that bored)
The transliteration into Latin from the "Cirth" or Dwarvish runes gives something like:
Njindndtō ōdbps - Lhōp Njōdtdlnd
Did somebody really screw up this badly on something that's supposed to be a priceless collectable?
A remember some time ago when silver (or it may have been gold) coins that were legal tender were issued somewhere in europe. As they were legal tender the import value was their face value when crossing the borders, and not their silver worth - which helped get round a nice import loop hole. Can you do that with these? Is it still possible to buy 10 x $10 coins and claim you are only importing goods worth $100 (even though it is thousands of dollar worth of gold)?
Curious is all.
"That means you could plonk them down on a Kiwi bar and demand a nice cold Tui* in return. You'd be mad to do so, however, as the coins sell for well above their face value."
If you're daft enough to order a Tui then you'd probably be daft enough to buy these coins - most beers produced by NZ's two big brewing companies are flavourless crap, probably because the use of hops and malt in their makeup has been cut to the absolute minimum.