The bad press keeps rolling in for The Hobbit as it nears its theatrical premiere. There's been so much negative press from one New Zealand reporter, in fact, that the filmmakers themselves revoked the journalist's invitation to the red-carpet premiere and press junket. Turns out she may not be the only one.
Cushla Norman, who works for Radio New Zealand, said she received an email from Roadshow Film Distributors publicist Leanda Borrett saying, "Unfortunately we're no longer able to extend an invitation to you to cover the red carpet and press conference as part of The Hobbit junket. We will be looking to find another journalist." Norman was told explicitly that this decision came from the filmmakers, that they were unhappy with her coverage and that she could "infer that (she) was doing too many negative stories."
Perhaps more important, however, is the implication that Norman was not the only reporter to get a swift kick and a "don't let the door hit ya" email. Borrett also allegedly said other journalists were involved but would not state how many. Norman, for the record, had written a number of pieces on the film, including four on a two-year-old industrial dispute along with one involving that PETA scandal.
Between all this and the recent lawsuit from the Tolkien estate, it's almost understandable why the red-carpet event would be policed in this way. Unfortunately, when news hits that you've barred industry members for stating facts, you run the risk of making yourself look even worse in the process.