Own a piece of King Kong movie set - the Venture

Flickr: The Venture ready for King Kong filmingThe "Venture" is up for sale - be cool to own a piece of movie history but I'm not sure what you could actually do with it!

Here's the full Stuff.co.nz story (they generally disappear off-line fairly quickly):
Liquidator seeks Kong ship buyer
By COLIN PATTERSON - The Dominion Post | Wednesday, 29 August 2007

The ship that took the great ape from Skull Island to New York in Peter Jackson's remake of King Kong is looking for a new owner.

After filming finished in 2005, the Manuia – renamed the Venture for the movie – was sold to Wellington property developer Phil Stratford.

He planned to make the Manuia the centrepiece of a proposed Wellington waterfront aquarium. However, his plans were scuttled when Wellington City Council decided to support a rival bid for a marine conservation centre on Wellington's south coast.

Mr Stratford said that with no prospect of his proposal proceeding, the Manuia no longer had a viable use. Therefore, he had placed the company that owned it in voluntary liquidation.

Liquidator Richard Williams was now seeking buyers for the ship.

Mr Williams said there had been considerable interest and he hoped to have at least two firm offers by the end of the week.

He had a fair idea of what he wanted for the ship, what it was worth and what it would fetch for scrap. "They're all different figures."

But he would not say what they were.

If a sale went through, he planned to make an offer to port company CentrePort to repay some of the thousands of dollars owed in berthage fees.

Mr Stratford said the ship's departure would represent a lost opportunity for Wellington.

"It will probably be sunk and used as a dive wreck and then seen by a few people a month."

The Manuia is one of three old hulks berthed at Miramar Wharf whose presence has led to complaints that they are eyesores and safety hazards.

Wellington harbourmaster Mike Pryce said the Manuia and the other two – the James Cook and the Szap 8 – were among five hulks he wanted sunk in a designated site in Cook Strait.

Though a new owner might want the Manuia as a dive site, Captain Pryce said that would require a resource consent, which could take months to obtain.

CentrePort said it was keen to see the last of the Manuia.

Spokesman Charles Smith said a new owner should be prepared to move it.

"There is no automatic right to a berth at Miramar Wharf."

Oh, by the way - it don't look much like the photo anymore, all the props are gone and it's been sitting out in the Wellington weather for quite some time now!


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