John Rhys-Davies in Bulgaria
The most famous dwarf in the world, or rather say – the marvelous actor who played the part of Gimli – Mr. John Rhys-Davies, is currently in Bulgaria. He is shooting here another adventure film with dragons and malicious kings… “Guess, who I am playing!”, said Mr.Davies while being the special guest on the most popular TV Talk-show here.
In that show Mr.Davies proved to be a charming entertainer and a wise and intelligent man with subtle sense of humour. In fact, we here have known the actor for many years, from the film-hits like “Indiana Jones”, “I Claudius” and a lot of other film productions. But he is probably most popular for his role in the “Shogun” – mega production. The thing is that J.R.Davies is well known to the Bulgarian movie-fans just as he usually looks like. So, believe me, almost nobody could recognize him at first in the role of Gimli! I, who am personally a great fan of Mr.Davies, could hardly believe it!!! e I know that Mr.Davies has explained hundreds of times about how he played his character – a dwarf – HIM!!!! – being such a big man! However, he had nothing against explaining it once again and even more! – he demonstrated it! Well, that was such a fun! Mr.Davies got up from the cozy sofa he was sitting on, fell on his knees and showed the audience how from this position he, being Gimli, HAD to fight with “full strength”. And when he swang his famous axe to strike a mighty blow he…. just crashed face down on the floor! Of course, he was playing! But he did all with such a grace and humour that the whole audience strongly applauded his brief but brilliant performance and… you know, even in his smart suit, he still looked like Gimli! Charming!!
Mr.Davies admitted to the Bulgarian audience he had not read the LOTR-book before he was offered the part of Gimli. Now, he said, he has read it at least four times and he is convinced that this is the greatest fiction written in the 20th century. He also admitted that he loved his Gimli and that he would never forget this character for he had played it with love….. Though, of course, Mr.Davies could not avoid mentioning about the heavy hours of putting up the whole make up that made J.R.Davies into Gimli the Dwarf!
To me, personally, Mr.Davies’s appearance on that TV-show was even more thrilling. First, because the film he is shooting now in my country is being done in an ancient fortress found in my own native town! I spent my childhood there! I know the fortress like the backyard of my house! And, on the other hand, he was presented with an ancient coin from the oldest golden treasure in the world (dated around 5000 to even 9000 years BC!), found near the city where I live now!!! Well!! What a coincidence! BTW, Mr.Davies is famous for his ancient coins collecting passion and he was deeply moved to receive such a precious object.
As for the LOTR-movie-trilogy, Mr.Davies said that this production is one of those films that live forever in people’s minds. And that ROTK will prove it!
So, if you think that Gimli had departed with Legolas to Aman, believe me you’re wrong! Not to the West but to the East he had gone! And it seems he likes it a lot being in the lands of the Easterlings, because he promised to return as often and as soon as possible to Bulgaria!
Thanks to Ross for this detailed report.Posted in Old Special Reports on February 28, 2003 by Tehanu