The movie trilogy “The Hobbit” has so far cost nearly three-quarters of a billion dollars to make as the epic continues to set new benchmarks for studio spending.

Financial documents filed this month in New Zealand, where the three movies are being made, show production costs through March had reached 934 million New Zealand dollars which is the equivalent of USD $745 million.

The figures include filming and digital effects completed over several years but not the final eight months of production costs leading up to the scheduled December release of the final movie. It’s not clear from the documents whether worldwide marketing and distribution costs are included.

Warner Bros., which is making the movies, on Tuesday declined to answer questions about the costs: “We don’t comment on production budgets,” wrote Candice McDonough, a senior vice president at New Line Cinema and Warner Bros. Entertainment, in an email.

The cost eclipses previous records for film productions. On a per-film basis, however, the movies are not the most expensive ever made. At least not yet.

Box Office Mojo and Guinness World Records estimate that record goes to “Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End” which cost about $300 million to make.

Box Office Mojo estimates the first two Hobbit movies took in a combined $1.98 billion at the box office.

tagged in The Hobbit