Sir Richard Taylor

Sir Richard Taylor

Sir Richard Taylor, designer

Sir Richard Taylor is famed for his work alongside Peter Jackson in The Lord of the Rings trilogy. A multiple Oscar winner, Richard studied at the Wellington School of Design from 1982 to 1984, where he tended to ‘alter the brief to suit his skills’.

In 1987 Richard and his partner Tania Rodger set up Richard Taylor Effects Ltd. They provided a range of special effects and puppetry services for many clients including the TV series Public Eye. Inevitably they came into contact with Peter Jackson and Jamie Selkirk, forming Weta Workshop in 1994. 

Numerous collaborative projects followed - Meet the Feebles, Brain Dead, The Frighteners and Heavenly Creatures to name a few. Weta Digital was formed and the New Zealand film industry took a whole new direction, one which led ultimately to the Lord of the Rings trilogy, putting New Zealand firmly on the world map.

The team at Weta have continued their inspired work with The Hobbit, King Kong, The Chronicles of Narnia, The Legend of Zorro, Kingdom of Heaven, Hellboy, Van Helsing, Master and Commander, Perfect Strangers, The Last Samurai and Black Sheep. A career highlight for Richard and Tania more recently was the creation of their children’s TV series ‘Jane and the Dragon’. 

Richard and Tania have been instrumental in re-branding New Zealand’s business and creative talent. They believe it will be our vitality, inventiveness and imagination which will make New Zealand stand out in the 21st century. 

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Toi Rauwhārangi
College of Creative Arts
Wellington, Aotearoa