Sixty firefighters spent three hours battling a blaze which badly damaged a well-known film studio in west Auckland.
Sixteen fire trucks were called to the Auckland Film Studios on Hickory Ave in Henderson just after midnight.
Auckland Council, which owns the filming complex, confirmed that Studio 3 has been extensively damaged, but says it is insured.
"The building was not being used for filming and the damage is not expected to affect current filming operations," it said in a statement.
Debris falling from the ceiling prevented firefighters from getting to the source of the blaze. Instead they could only fight it from the outside.
"With these older building there's false ceilings, false walls, things like that," assistant area commander John Booth said on Firstline. "We can't put any crews inside at the moment… we are doing an aerial appliance attack."
The cause of the fire is unknown and an investigation is currently underway.
The studio is one of the largest in New Zealand and has hosted film productions like Whale Rider and The Chronicles of Narnia, and TV series like Power Rangers and Xena: Warrior Princess.
It is believed the studio is being used for production of the sequel to Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon.
Auckland Council assured the current film being produced at the complex, and future projects, would not be affected by the fire.
"We are extremely thankful that the damage caused by the fire is limited, and service to the production on site can continue," said Auckland Film Studios Ltd Chairman James Hill.
The Council says the fire was centred in a workshop and training area on the edge of the lot, well away from the studios and offices where over 300 staff are at work today.
The damaged warehouse covers an area of 2500 square metres.
3 News / NZN
source: newshub archive