Power Rangers will no longer be produced in New Zealand.
Members of the film industry are calling the shock news “a huge loss” for the cast and local crew who have worked on the show for more than 20 years.
Production company Hasbro confirmed the move to 1News, but did not explain why the production is leaving our shores.
The Power Rangers TV show is filmed in New Zealand. Photo / Glenn Jeffrey
A spokesperson told the broadcaster, “We are committed to keeping Power Rangers fresh by reimagining the brand and how we bring our entertainment content to life for our consumers”.
“We’ve been in communication with teams to ensure they are set up for success in their next adventures,” they continued.
“We’ve had the pleasure of working with such incredible and talented teams in New Zealand and plan to keep close for any future projects that may be a fit for Power Rangers or across any other of our future entertainment productions.”
The show arrived in New Zealand in 2002, where it could be made more cheaply than in the US and Japan, where it had been produced for 10 years.
It’s boosted New Zealand’s economy by more than $340 million since then.
It’s also helped home-grown Kiwi actors and crew to carve out a path for themselves in the film industry, with Sally Martin, Teuila Blakely and Ria Vandervis appearing on the show throughout the years.
Martin was famously the only female ranger on her series, saying of her stint on the show: “I’d worked for a few years within the industry, but nothing could prepare me for that kind of schedule and style of shooting”.
Blakely, who stars on the upcoming season of the show as Commander Shaw in Power Rangers Cosmic Fury, said she was “gutted” to see the show leave New Zealand.
Some industry insiders believe the decision to move the show offshore could be New Zealand’s 20 per cent film tax rebate, while Screen Production and Development Association president Irene Gardiner told 1News that it might be down to New Zealand not being “quite competitive as we might be” in the film world.
The show’s 30th season, shot in New Zealand, is set for release this year.
Take your Radio, Podcasts and Music with you