Brad Dourif at DragonCon2003 Report!
This is White Lady Eowyn, from the TORN message boards.
I wanted to let everyone know what a wonderfully nice man that Brad Dourif is!
I had the wonderful pleasure of seeing Mr. Dourif at two panels; not just his Lord of the Rings panel, but also the one from the XFiles guest stars. For those unfamiliar with his appeaance on that show, he played condemned serial killer Luther Lee Boggs, a man who channeled the thoughts of another killer. He also channeled the spirit of Scully’s recently deceased father.
The XFiles room, by far, was the better one to see him at, due to the smaller size of the room. It held only about 50-75 people, whereas the Centennial Ballroom holds upwards of 1500, I’m sure. It was closer and more intimate, and this allowed for more observation of the man, closeup.
For lack of a better word, the man actually looked like a normal human being, not the strange and unusual characters he has played not only in Lord of the Rings and the XFiles, but a myriad of other television shows, over the years. The long, Wyatt-Earp looking mustache that he is sporting is due to the fact that he is filming a Western series for HBO entitled “Deadwood”, in which he plays a doctor.
During the Lord of the Rings panel, someone asked him if he remembered the last “normal” person that he played in the movies or onscreen. And he honestly could not remember. Mr. Dourif was personable and humorous during the whole panel.
Someone ( Goldilocks Took I believe, from TORN’s message boards) asked him what he thought the motivation was behind Wormtongue’s tear, during the sequence at Isengard from “The Two Towers”. While he was answering about Grima’s possible traumatic childhood, a loud rumble of thunder from an approaching storm shook the room. Without missing a beat, he looked up to the ceiling and stated something like, “Or maybe there were -other-motivations.” Everyone in the room laughed. The loud sound of the rain a few minutes later also caused him to pause and ask what the sound was, reminding all of us after we answered that he had been living in LA, and they didn’t get rain like that there!
One point that stirred the Tolkien fans that were present in the XFiles panel was Fellowship of the Ring, and its lack of major Oscars. A fellow attendee asked him what he thought of this. While trying to be diplomatic, and reminding us that he really does enjoy the films so far, he stated that he believed that the version that went into the theaters did not deserve an Oscar. Mr. Dourif said he enjoyed the Extended Edition much better, and he felt the longer version of The Two Towers would be a much better film, as well.
When asked sort of the same question in the Lord of the Rings panel, he (wisely, I believe) did not directly answer the question, but basically said, “Forget the Oscars”, much to the crowd’s delight.
After the panel, he very graciously allowed people to take pictures and speak to him, and he even complimented my Eowyn replica dress that I wore to the Con for the whole weekend. Sunday night, while most of the Lord of the Rings fans were in the lobby of the Hyatt in their costumes for picture opportunities, he stopped by and chatted with the fans and others, allowing anyone and everyone to get their pictures made with him. Unfortunately, I missed this, due to entering the Masquerade.
Overall, I was very impressed with him, both as an actor and as a person (despite his jetlag, that left him fumbling for words at times somewhat).