Support TheOneRing.net - A not for profit fan community!
Join us in our 24 Hour Chatroom!
LEGO Lord of the Rings Collection
Thranduil Statue

News Alerts

Get emailed with every new post!

Weekly Newsletter

Select a list:

Archive for October, 2005

Want To Visit WETA Workshops in New Zealand?

The awesome folks at Ubisoft are about to launch a contest to get your knees shaking, your heart a-pumping and your mouth drooling! Pick up ‘Peter Jackson’s King Kong: The Official Game of the Movie’ and you could win an all expense paid trip to Wellington to visit WETA WORKSHOP!! That’s right! You heard it here first folks! Swing on over to kingkonggame.com for full contest rules and details.

Pre-Order on Amazon.com
PC (Windows XP)
PSP
Xbox 360

Posted in Old Main News

Miranda Otto Joins us at ORC II!!!!

TheOneRing.net and Creation Entertainment are proud to bring you, for the first time on a convention stage, Miranda Otto. She will be appearing at The One Ring Celebration (ORC) in Pasadena the weekend of January 20-22, 2006. You will be the first to be able to ask her about her fight training, or those beautiful dresses, or learning to fight on horseback, or what it was like to bring one of the first really strong female heroes to life. Her autograph will be part of the Wizard Circle package, so go check out the convention page now to see what else that includes. And believe it or not, we are no where near done announcing guests. Not all will be the big news this is, but I’m sure you all will enjoy the show we are putting together for you. [More]

Click here to view images from last years ORC: One Ring Convention

Posted in Old Main News

Happy Birthday PJ!


Today is Peter Jackson’s Birthday! Peter was born on October 31st, 1961 in Pukerua Bay, North Island, New Zealand. That makes him 44 today! Happy Birthday Peter!

Posted in Old Main News

Alan Lee Book Tour: Seattle, WA

Meet Alan Lee tonight in Seattle, WA at ‘University Bookstore’ (4326 University Way NE). Alan will be signing copies of his latest book ‘The Lord of the Rings Sketchbook’ starting at 7pm. Alan is also keeping a travel blog of his book tour exclusively with TORN right here! [Alan Lee Travel Blog]

A BIG thank you to JPB for setting up the Blog for Alan’s book tour, you did a great job!!

More tour dates and locations are available here. [More]

Posted in Old Main News

Alan Lee Book Tour: Corte Madera, CA Report

Celebriel writes: About 75 SF Bay Area Ringers were on hand to greet Alan Lee in Marin County Saturday evening, on his return to the San Francisco area to promote “The Lord of the Rings Sketchbook.” Many arrived as much as two hours early to reserve seats and have dinner in the bookstore’s café. They were treated to his wonderful presentation of sketches, photographs, and montages, as well as nearly two hours of stories from his six-year involvement in The Lord of the Rings. [More]

Posted in Old Main News

Alan Lee Book Tour: Corte Madera, CA Report

Alan Lee Book Tour Report: Corte Madera, CA
Click for more images

Celebriel writes: About 75 SF Bay Area Ringers were on hand to greet Alan Lee in Marin County Saturday evening, on his return to the San Francisco area to promote “The Lord of the Rings Sketchbook.” Many arrived as much as two hours early to reserve seats and have dinner in the bookstore’s café. They were treated to his wonderful presentation of sketches, photographs, and montages, as well as nearly two hours of stories from his six-year involvement in The Lord of the Rings.

He opened the program with material on Minas Tirith, explaining in detail how his art was used in the film production. His pencil sketches and montages (often combinations of his photographs, many taken from helicopters, and working models) were used by the model makers and the computer artists, who needed very specific information on the geography of Minas Tirith and the Pelennor Fields, for example, to complete their work. An example was a sweeping panorama from Osgiliath across the Anduin and the Pelennor to Minas Tirith, complete with the curves in the river where the Corsair ships would eventually be sighted. In a light touch, one drawing shows Denethor walking his little dog atop the Citadel and looking out over the city.

He also prepared drawings that would help the computer artists illustrate effects, such as Grond striking the doors of Minas Tirith, or stonework collapsing under attack.

For the Hall of Kings in Minas Tirith, he showed a mosaic design he had created for the hall and then painted in Photoshop. It was added in to the scene after principal photography had been completed.

In one of the most interesting sequences, Lee showed his series of pencil sketches of Gandalf’s and Pippin’s ride through Minas Tirith to the Citadel. He explained that as he worked through the series, “the details of the architecture became clearer” to him, and “the structures started to become real and fully formed.” The sequence and visual angles are incredibly close to what was used in The Return of the King. In addition to the layout and overall architecture of the city, Lee drew thousands of details including columns, wall hangings, furniture, and the many statues that line the hall. As we know, the eventual Minas Tirith miniature was so finely detailed it could be used not just in wide shots but in close-ups filmed just inches from its surface.

He said that the pickup shots for each film generally lasted three months, and often involved rebuilding sets or parts of sets that had been taken down so they could be used in new or expanded scenes.

Lee also did most of the design work on Edoras, one of his favorite sets. The craftsmen who worked at Edoras were “an extraordinary bunch,” he says. “There were 400 people working on construction and set building, 80% of whom had never worked on a film before. They were craftsmen in their own right who came to Wellington, announced their presence, and said, ‘Please let us work on this film’.” Many of them were characters, too, like Sam Jennett, the stone carver who carved with an axe in each hand.

The scope of his work on The Lord of the Rings is impressive: In his six years he made over 2500 pencil drawings. He also worked on packaging for the DVDs, including the icons on the Extended Edition of The Return of the King and the fellowship entering Moria for the Fellowship of the Ring. At the suggestion of Peter Jackson and Fran Walsh, he did the sketches seen during the credits of The Return of the King, aiming to capture the actors when they were most themselves.

Lee shared photos of Saruman’s Book, with a white hand icon on its cover. He created the artwork in the book, in style a subtle homage to Leonardo da Vinci’s sketchbooks, that was combined with Daniel Reeve’s beautiful calligraphy.

In discussing his working relationship with John Howe, he said that Howe created creatures such as the Balrog, the Fell Beast, and the wraiths, and was responsible for Barad-Dur, Minas Morgul, the Black Gates, and Bag End, while he created Rivendell, Minas Tirith, Rohan, Moria, and also Orthanc.

Behind the scenes material included a photo with Jim Rygiel and his staff, comparing the artwork for the ring dissolving in lava with slices of leftover pizza.

He showed sketches that were to be used in flashback scenes of the five Istari arriving in Middle Earth, which was to have been filmed on a beach near Wellington. Props and costumes were tried out on some extras, but the scenes were not completed. He also mentioned talk of a scene in which Tom Bombadil would have officiated at Sam and Rosie’s wedding (THIS WAS NEVER FILMED)

Lee has two cameos in the films. In the Prologue to The Fellowship of the Ring, he is one of the nine men (who eventually become ringwraiths) receiving rings. In The Two Towers, he and Supervising Art Director Dan Hanna are seen in the Armoury at Helm’s Deep, when Gimli says “some have seen too many winters….”

His Elven map of Middle Earth appears as the endpapers in the new Sketchbook. He imagined it as something Bilbo would have brought back from Rivendell, and revealed that Numenor on the map is modeled after the North Island of New Zealand: “It’s star-shaped with a volcano in the middle.”

Lee said that there is still “a huge amount of art that hasn’t been seen,” suggesting that what’s needed is “a big thick book that really shows off the props and the armor,” for example. His next project will be an illustrated version of Ovid’s Metamorphoses for younger readers.

After the slide presentation, he stayed for well over an hour answering questions, chatting with fans, and signing books and the special t-shirts whose unique design he had created in July for the SF Trilogy Thursday which raised funds for Cure Autism Now.

Posted in Old Special Reports

‘Lord Of The Rings’ musical preview

TORONTO – Things were hopping in Middle-Earth yesterday — hopping, flying, jumping and stilt-walking, too. As the first full week drew to a close of what will be many weeks of rehearsals for the upcoming stage production of Lord Of The Rings (opening in the Princess of Wales Theatre next March, after extensive previews), producers yesterday brought two of the show’s key components together for a show-and-tell with Toronto media. [More]

Posted in Old Main News

VeggieTales tackle ‘Lord of the Rings’

It’s way too obvious and far less imaginative than most VeggieTales adventures, but The Lord of the Beans still cooks up some smiles and laughs – and an uplifting biblical message – as the computer-generated vegetables star in a spoof of the blockbuster film trilogy, The Lord of the Rings. The 27th episode of the best-selling VeggieTales series, released today, features Junior Asparagus as “Toto Baggypants” and Archibald Asparagus as his “Uncle Billboy,” two “flobbits” – the VeggieTales equivalent of J.R.R. Tolkien’s hobbits. [More]

Pre-Order ‘VeggieTales – Lord of the Beans’ on Amazon.com today!

Posted in Old Main News

Alan Lee Book Tour: San Francisco, CA

Meet Alan Lee tonight in San Francisco, CA at ‘The Booksmith’ (1644 Haight Street). Alan will be signing copies of his latest book ‘The Lord of the Rings Sketchbook’ starting at 2pm. Alan is also keeping a travel blog of his book tour exclusively with TORN right here! [Alan Lee Travel Blog]

A BIG thank you to JPB for setting up the Blog for Alan’s book tour, you did a great job!!

More tour dates and locations are available here. [More]

Posted in Old Main News

Alan Lee Book Tour: Corte Madera, CA

Meet Alan Lee tonight in Corte Madera, CA at ‘Book Passage’ (51 Tamal Vista Blvd.). Alan will be signing copies of his latest book ‘The Lord of the Rings Sketchbook’ starting at 7pm. Alan is also keeping a travel blog of his book tour exclusively with TORN right here! [Alan Lee Travel Blog]

A BIG thank you to JPB for setting up the Blog for Alan’s book tour, you did a great job!!

More tour dates and locations are available here. [More]

Posted in Old Main News

Alan Lee, the rock star of the art world!

MrCere writes: SALT LAKE CITY – Alan Lee continued his book tour Friday with a stop in Salt Lake City where he visited just about a year ago for signings of his illustrated edition of ‘The Lord of the Rings.’ His supurb new book “The Lord of the Rings Sketchbook” prompted his latest tour, complete with his own blog here at TheOneRing.net. If you haven’t seen this wonderful book yet, it is a thing of beauty and something no fan should be without. [More]

Posted in Old Main News

Alan Lee, the rock star of the art world!

MrCere writes: SALT LAKE CITY – Alan Lee continued his book tour Friday with a stop in Salt Lake City where he visited just about a year ago for signings of his illustrated edition of ‘The Lord of the Rings.’

His supurb new book “The Lord of the Rings Sketchbook” prompted his latest tour, complete with his own blog here at TheOneRing.net. If you haven’t seen this wonderful book yet, it is a thing of beauty and something no fan should be without.

The crowd gathered early and crammed the usually spacious Border’s book store in Murray, Utah (part of the greater Salt Lake area) where he, just like his legendary humble self, sat in the midst of the crowd and made small talk with those who arrived early enough to sit close.

He is widely known as a kind and gracious man and these characteristics were clearly evident. As with all the previously reported stops on his tour, Lee started with a powerbook presentation with art, sketches and photographs.

He demonstrated with series of photographs how actors looked on a set with blue screen and how they looked afterwards for the finished film when Lee’s artwork and world creation replaced fields of man-made blue or green. He explained to the audience some of the work involved and shared amusing anecdotes from the moments of the now legendary set of those ‘Rings’ films.

Most delightful and unexpected were photographs of the principal talents working on the sets and film, especially when Lee was seen with the likes of collegue John Howe, Peter Jackson and a host of WETAs and other random Academy Award winners. Of course Lee never spoke of awards and accolades and instead focused on the process – both practical and creative – of making the movies.

He also fielded questions from those gathered and there was no shortage of raised hands. He mentioned that on a film set with its time demands that he never could afford to have an ‘off day’ and on the occasions when he reaches difficult points in his work he found talking a walk to be helpful.

In response to a question he said that natural talent and practice aren’t as big a factor for an artist as temperment. Being willing to sit alone and labor at an drawing board and be self-critical was Lee’s most important attribute for success as an artist.

Lee talked briefly about his treasure from the films when Jackson and partner Fran Walsh presented him with Gandalf’s staff as a momento and he also talked about his cameo appearances with self depreciating humor hinting that Gimli spoke of Lee himself with his line about many of the men set to defend Helm’s Deep had ‘seen too many winters’ – Lee was an extra in that scene.

One fan asked about the possibility of a portfolio or book with all of the character pictures from the end credits of ‘Return of the King’. Lee said that fans have asked the same question at each of the book tour stops and the request is duely noted. Houghton-Mifflin, are you listening?!

Lee was of course generous and gracious with his time after the Q&A by leisurely signing books, taking pictures with and of fans and talking with those who were so joyful and often in awe to see a legend in person.

He claimed to not be a rock star of the art world but the gentle gentleman underestimates how highly he is esteemed by the Tolkien communities he so graciously visits.

Lee is off next to San Francisco and we wish him all the best!

Posted in Old Special Reports