New Zealand is set to star in a new movie fantasy, this time as the home of Disney’s Pete’s Dragon which released worldwide in August 2016.A reimagining of Disney’s cherished family classic Pete’s Dragon is the adventure of an orphaned boy named Pete and his best friend – a lovable dragon named Elliot. The film is directed by David Lowery and stars Bryce Dallas Howard, Oakes Fegley, Wes Bentley, New Zealand’s own Karl Urban, Oona Laurence and Robert Redford. In Pete’s Dragon, New Zealand plays Millhaven, an American Pacific Northwest logging town.The film was shot over both New Zealand’s main islands, the North and the South, showcasing diverse landscapes. The four regions showcased were Rotorua, central North Island; Wellington, lower North Island; Queenstown, southern South Island and Tapanui, lower South Island.“New Zealand is a country with a smile on its face,” said Robert Redford.Superstar actor and Sundance founder Robert Redford spent several weeks in New Zealand while filming Disney’s Pete’s Dragon, shooting many of his scenes in the fishing town of Tapanui in the South Island.The Redford family stayed for a long weekend enjoying New Zealand’s most sought after scenery and the luxuries of a fine contemporary New Zealand home.“It was a very attractive place to be, you couldn’t help smile when you were there and it was a wonderful experience for that reason,” Robert Redford said.A short helicopter flight west from Tapanui is a place called Paradise. Some say it was named for its stunning scenery; others argue that it’s all to do with the paradise ducks that live in the area. Either way, what everyone agrees on is that Paradise is exactly that – so, it’s no surprise that Robert Redford elected to enjoy a luxury escape here with his family.Immersed in a landscape that has captured the eye of many filmmakers, Wyuna House is a luxury villa set in a private natural reserve. Perched on the northern end of Lake Wakatipu, the schist and timber lodge has been designed to blend harmoniously into its beautiful alpine setting. Just across the road from Wyuna House, the Redford family dined at New Zealand’s celebrated Blanket Bay Lodge. The 13-room lodge has panoramic lake views and an award-winning kitchen – both of which have helped gain many awards, including being named as the ‘World’s Ultimate Escape’ by the UK Sunday Times Magazine.“I love being in New Zealand and the fact I was able to be in a helicopter with a great pilot that took you up to the glacier, up the valley, and to the sea – he took you everywhere you could possibly be so you could see all of what New Zealand had to offer. That was a big moment for me, it was just mesmerising,” Robert Redford said.Visitors who make it to Paradise Valley enter a very special place where glorious isolation, natural grandeur, and a magnificent palette are combined in perfect balance. Robert Redford and family spent a lot of their time outdoors exploring the native forest and quiet green pastures on horseback at Dart Stables – one of the star’s long-time passions.The region is one of New Zealand’s most popular destinations for hikers and nature lovers, with more than 19 day walks to explore. The Redford family went on several local trails including the Diamond Creek walk.“It’s a country that appreciates itself as a country, as a landscape. Making the film was one thing, but experiencing New Zealand outside the film was another and I really loved it,” Robert Redford said.Alpine resort Queenstown – the nearest main centre to Paradise – is a lively year-round tourist destination, rated internationally as one of the world’s top holiday spots.Adventure and indulgence go hand-in-hand in Queenstown, which boasts some of New Zealand’s best luxury accommodation, world-class golf courses and thrilling activities set in dramatic alpine landscapes.Glenorchy, a 45-minute drive from Queenstown, is on the road to Paradise and along a route that has been lauded as one of the ‘Top Eight Scenic Drives’ in the world.