The New Zealand Film Commission wants to take away from filmmakers their traditional right of final cut – and is facing a predictable backlash.

The NZFC, the country’s primary funding source, this month informed producers it would take the power of final cut in films in which it invests.

It said a panel of three – comprising chief exec Richard Stewart, marketing director Lindsay Shelton, and development director Ruth Jeffery – would view films at final cut and decide on changes with filmmakers.

The NZFC “won’t get final cut on any of my movies,” said helmer Peter Jackson, who is shooting “The Frighteners,” a ghost story starring Michael J. Fox for U.

Jackson says he’s sympathetic both with filmmakers’ wishes and the notion that “the people who are putting up the finance should have a creative right to their say.”

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