Anniversary Muppet characters being crafted in New Zealand Courtesy of Yahoo News A New Zealand design workshop has gone from making Hobbits to Muppets. Special effects group Weta Workshop, which won two Academy Awards for creating characters in "Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring," has designed miniature a range of Muppet figurines. They will go on sale, initially in the United States for dlrs 187 each, to mark the Muppet Show's 25th anniversary this year. No release date has yet been set. The Wellington-based group was granted a license last year to create 20 Muppet characters by the Jim Henson Co., Weta art director Ben Hawker said Thursday. Regarded as collectable rather than toys, they will be 12-15 centimeters (4.8-6.0 inch) high and will be made of polystone in China. Weta director Richard Taylor who won the Oscars said a model of Kermit the Frog took six months to perfect and he is thrilled with how the other Muppets turned out. "In many ways they are is the crown jewels of America and being allowed so close to them is a great privilege," Taylor said.