The Mountain: First trailer shows off Mount Taranaki, Kiwi humour and iconic J. R. R. Tolkien line

Mount Taranaki and one of Gandalf's most iconic lines loom large in New Zealand actor Rachel House's directorial debut The Mountain, the first teaser trailer for which was released on Thursday. 

It has been announced the movie will have its world premiere in New Plymouth on Tuesday, March 19, nine days before it is released in New Zealand cinemas. 

House, who has appeared in films like Hunt for the Wilderpeople and Taika Waititi's Thor, said she was delighted for the film to premiere in Taranaki. 

"It is only fitting that our worldwide premiere be there too. With the generosity of mana whenua we have been able to represent Taranaki in this story about longing, resilience, and healing with three pretty cool kids living their best lives," she said in a statement. 

According to the film's publicity, The Mountain focuses on three children who are "on a mission to find healing under the watchful eye of Taranaki Maunga (Mountain)". 

"As they make their way through the difficult 'off the beaten track' route, they learn the true spirit of adventure and the magic of friendship." 

In the film's first teaser trailer, fearless young girl Sam is seen quoting Gandalf's iconic line "You shall not pass" to her two new friends, Mallory and Bronco as they head towards the mountain. The line was spoken by actor Sir Ian McKellen in the Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring when his character, Gandalf, was confronted by the fiery Balrog, and has subsequently become popular in memes and pop culture. 

The movie features three young children who are making their acting debut. 

The Mountain releases in New Zealand cinemas on March 28.