Filmmaker Sir Peter Jackson is talking about the close friendship he has with former death row prisoner Damien Echols ahead of the screening of the West of Memphis documentary in New Zealand.
Sir Peter and his wife Fran Walsh took up the cause of the so-called West Memphis Three, who spent 18 years in jail for the ritual murders of three eight-year-old boys in the 1990s, after watching the Paradise Lost documentary on the case in 2005.
Damien Echols, Jason Baldwin and Jessie Misskelley Jr are now widely believed to have been wrongly convicted.
The maker of Lord of the Rings produced the West of Memphis documentary, which is directed by American filmmaker Amy Berg, and screened at Utah's Sundance Festival this year.
After Echols was freed last August Sir Peter applied for an exemption for him to visit New Zealand, where he spent eight days helping produce the documentary, Fairfax Media reports.
Sir Peter and his wife remain in almost daily contact with Echols.
Sir Peter said Echols was like "an innocent alien child discovering all the stuff in the world", after 14 years on death row.
"He fell in love with pineapple lumps and Crunchie bars. He was in heaven down here," Sir Peter said.
"He left the world in 1993 and walked back into it in 2011."
Echols and Sir Peter have had matching tattoos carved as a result of the friendship.
Sir Peter will talk further about the case on TV3's 60 minutes show on Sunday.