It was an interesting journey the filmmaker and Hobbit actor Jed Brophy took us on in one hour, we where guided along the stages and rooms of Park Road Post in Miramar, Wellington, to where we finally ended up in Peter Jackson’s’ home away from home the editing room in his traditional bare feet.
Jed was a great host along side Peter Jackson who explained certain things on the way to the editing room, we saw snippets of work in progress, Azog and an Orc in motion capture, some Pre-Viz of Smaug the Dragon, of whom we only saw snippets of in The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, which is akin to the unfinished Gollum in his first but brief appearance in Fellowship of The Ring, before he was fully realized as a digital character in the Two Towers, he was a mere shadow of himself you could say..
Peter Jackson must have been walking around in bare feet all the way because I didn’t see him taking off his shoes on the way to the editing room..
Once there they made themselves comfortable, and they showed us one scene of Bilbo with the dwarves and Bard the Bowman in a boat, who is transporting them across to Laketown just after picking them up in the barrels from the river, Peter explained about all the various camera angles which he used for that scene and how he could choose one from them for the final edit.
Then we were greeted and introduced to some new and old new actors, who will appear in the second movie the Desolation of Smaug, via a pre-recorded video, and then caught glimpse’s of them in character and in action on set.
A few fans were lucky enough to have their questions answered too, and we were presented with video or artwork of the new locations as answers, and a very tasty teaser of things to come, Very Cool!
So much was said in that one hour, and with only a one off chance (before the modified version landed on the net) of trying to take it all in, I took it upon myself to transcribe what I heard, this took away the flutter of videos and pictures, and let me hear what was being said and there were quite a few interesting things as you can read below:
Jed: Thank you for joining us here at Park Road Post. I’m Jed Brophy I play ‘Nori’ in the hobbit, films, this morning you get to see behind the scenes, how we make these movies and where we make them and later on you get to ask Sir Peter Jackson some questions live, and speaking of which, its Peter Jackson himself, Morning Peter.
PJ: Jed how are you?
Jed: Very good nice to see
PJ: Great thank you, and here are all our folk tuning in, thank very much for making the time in your day or your night, speaking of which, for most of you in the America’s or Europe its Sunday March the 24th, not only is this live there actually a time travel element to this because of you look at today’s paper, down here in New Zealand its the 25th of march, Monday its 8:00 o’clock in the morning on Monday so your actually going ahead into time not just live, and I’ll tell you what look out your windows 7:00 o’clock Monday morning it’s amazing, spoiler alert but its incredible
Jed: bizarre there’s more of you cricket English cricket fans
PJ: Because England and New Zealand are playing a very intense game of cricket at the moment and just for the fans in England we thought you might like to look at the back of paper, yesterdays paper, never mind, never mind lets ah move on
Jed: What are we going to look at today?
PJ: Well, we are going to end up in the cutting room, most of this is going to take place in the cutting room, but before we get there I just wanted to give everyone a tour, around our building for those of you how’ve watched our blogs Stone Street Studios where the filming is done about hundred yards down the road, and so this is our post production place, were we find ourselves for months and months after the film is finished, and this is the motion caption stage, performance capture stage, and Christian is doing in the middle of doing a bit of motion capture for the second Hobbit movie
Christian:.. Where doing the part where Azgo’s um and the Orcs…
PJ: All right spoiler alert, spoiler alert, let’s just stick to the look this is Azog you see Azog, one of our chief Orc’s he’s actually friendly when he’s in a motion capture suit, more friendly then he is in the movie
*cut* to movie posters
PJ: Seven or Eight years old
PJ: Good movie
Jed: oh what have we got here?
PJ: Well this is a poster collection (six sheets) it’s a size. of a poster they don’t make any more, I’ve spent a few years trying to collect every James bond six sheet / 3 sheet, so this is just like the James Bond walk of fame
PJ: Its good
Jed: Which is your favorite?
PJ: Well this is the first bond movie I saw live and let die, but you know the posters, in the old days where just fantastic
PJ: They used to paint movie posters, which
PJ: Never happens anymore unfortunately
PJ: That’s a great poster isn’t it?
Jed: Yeah it is,
PJ: You Never Live Twice
Jed: The detail in it is amazing
PJ: We should walk down this corridor and makes you feel good
Jed: Yeah, Yeah, you’ve got room for the ones coming up
PJ: Yeah, we got room for all of them, yep, yep
PJ: Now were are heading into the Pre-Viz department
Jed: That stands for per-visualization
*walks through doors*
PJ: Which is like story boards, except we really don’t do story boards any more we do these, like, like, animated you know animated…some sequences, which we work on for quite a few months, before we give them to Weta Digital for the final shots, and we have quite a lot of people working for this department its a big team
PJ: Hey guys
Jed: How’s it going?
PJ: Yeah so we got a little bit of spider work happening over here, Ah Christian
Jed: Ah, Christian
PJ: Christian is here, yep, so Christian has been working on um, designs for Smaug ,the dragon
PJ: Let’s just have a little quick peek these are all friends, you’re not going to put this on the internet are you? let’s just have a quick look
PJ: Looks like he’s coming along well Christian
Christian: Yeah I kind of ah….we came up with this ourselves
PJ: Yeah that’s fantastic, no your doing so good, its original, great okay, keep up the good work
Jed: I don’t find it very scary
PJ: (whispers something I can’t hear to the camera), let’s keep going
PJ: Hey guys
PJ: So what we got? this is another Smaug is it?
Weta Motion capture guy: Ah some motion studies yeah, some ideas, what do you think
PJ: Yeah it looks a lot like kind a T-Rex with wings
Weta Motion capture guy: So close?
PJ: Well close no not close don’t think you close, But I think your wings should be bigger anyway, if a T-Rex is ever going to take off its going to need much bigger wings than that
Jed: We got a wee way to go
PJ: Shall we carry on
Jed: So these are some of the artworks from the Pre-Vis?
PJ: When you’re doing Pre-Vis you got to actually build a model of the set so you know, can actually portray the scenes, this is uh a set that we built for uh, it’s the Rivendell library, that we never used in the movies at the end of the day it was a sequence we never shot we cut that from the script before it ever got shot but we did do some early Pre-Vis on it
PJ: So we are officially entering the editing department now, and the first room is the room with all the brave editing team, the editing of this movie wouldn’t happen if it wasn’t for all these people at the height of all there professional powers
Jed: The claim all this room the bunker don’t they? The bunker
PJ: The bunker yep
PJ: How’s it going guys alright?
Editing staff: Yeah
*spoiler on a monitor *
PJ: whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa, lets don’t put ah oh dear oh dear
Jed: The elves are always watching, always
PJ: So now let’s head down the corridor, and then we will make ourselves comfortable, alright
Jed: That’s my favorite, Gold finger, everything he touch’s turns into excitement, just like my carrier
PJ: Hah, alright through here Jed
PJ: Here we are this is the editing room
PJ: Yep, its, its ah always a bit strange because, you know when we are shooting a movie, where dealing with two to three hundred people on set and, and while there’s a lot of people working on the film in post-production, Weta Digital and the sound, once I’ve done with shooting the film, I suddenly me and Jabez this is Jabez Olssen
Jed: Good to see ya
PJ: Its ah just me and Jabez in this room alone, so it’s a bit of a culture shock you know to suddenly
Jed: Big TV
PJ: Big TV, yeah, yeah
Jed: How big is that?
PJ: Um, I think it’s about one hundred and three inches
PJ: Yeah, no I know it’s good I, there is a reason why the TV is so big it’s not just kind of an indulgence, because its, in the old days we used edit movies on a little screen… and it was strange because you spend months editing a movie on a on a screen this size, and then when you finally projected it the cinema, which you do once you done you always had to go back to change the cut, because the difference in the rhythms and pacing between the small screen and the big screen, was, was strange was unexpected and so having the biggest screen as possible like literally, the biggest screen we could find to cut on is actually giving use the best sense we can, what it’s going to be like in the cinema
Jed: Right, so this is more like the end result
PJ: Yeah its so much better than cutting on a monitor screen size screen, um its good… I’ve got my poster this was on my bedroom wall when I was a kid
*One Million Years B.C* Poster
Jed: Really this actual poster?
Jed: Have, have you got a copy of the movie?
PJ: I did, yeah it’s a okay, but it wasn’t really about the movie the dinosaurs where cool and Raquel Welch was cool for a teenage boy it is a very good poster on the wall
PJ: So yes anyway, so we want to just um, before we get started we got questions, um that we are looking forward to answering and a, few bits and pieces, few surprise guests coming on but um, I thought I’d give everyone a little sense of what we do in the cutting room, because you know, when people are editing the movie it’s a little bit mysterious and um, I thought it would be fun for you know Jabez and I to just walk you through this you where in the scene (Jed), we shot this about a year ago?
Jed: We did, yeah April last year
PJ: And um.. it’s a scene its very, just like a little piece of the scene were Bard is taking the dwarves across the lake, towards Laketown it’s the first time they have been to lake town are with Bard, he’s collected these barrels from the river, those of you that have read the hobbit kinda know where abouts in the story we are, for those who haven’t look forward too it in December but um, I just wanted to give you a sense of how we kind of put these scenes together, it’s pretty much what we do every day, for months and months and months it takes months … takes months to do that
PJ: We tend to shoot quite a fair bit of footage Jed, which is great
Jed: Yeah…we do year, I enjoyed it, that part
PJ: So um, as a director where shooting I’ve got to try to figure out what camera angles your shoo ing, so you , you know generally you shoot a master a wide shoot, and we can have a look at example of a master and will go wide for this particular scene, and then you,you, once , sometimes i don’t have a plan at all I shoot the master, then I’ll walk around and decide on what coverage, it’s called converge, which is basically the close up shots, the tighter shots that we would do once we done the wide, so this is uh, our wide shoot of the scene, the boats travelling, its moving, its static where, where we shot because it was easier to do that way but in the movie it’ll look its travelling across the lake hence all the green screen around it, so these are unfinished shots
PJ: But this will give you a sense of the process, so Jabez and I kinda go through
Bilbo: “I should never have left Bag End that was our first mistake .”, “you know we have a saying the shire, we learn it from birth never venture east”, woman’s voice: “so tell me master hobbit why did you venture”
Bilbo: “I should never have left Bag End that was our first mistake, “You know we have a saying the shire, we learn it from birth never venture east” woman’s voice: “so tell me master hobbit why did you venture..”
PJ: So that was a couple of takes, and, and, how long,
Jabez: We got more than that
PJ: And um yeah, the interesting thing about Martin in particular since this is the line of Martins is that I always love the way he does a completely different performance each take
Jed: He does always take you by surprise quite a lot
PJ: Yeah, you get the idea that you know, he’s experimenting with how he can push and shove and work the lines around, just you know it’s always interesting, interesting to watch, so this is another angle, so now, what I’ve done is come in for, what you probably call a midshot I mean this is a particularly good shot, because Jeds is..
Jed: Right there, im right in the corner, It is one of the better shots Jed isn’t it?
Jed: It is
PJ: And um we but probably won’t…, let’s have a look at it you may not see it in the movie, so let’s look at it with Jed in the room here, okay this is the same line again from a midshot size, this is take one.
Bilbo: “I should never have left Bag End that was our first mistake”, “Do you know we have an old saying the shire, we learn it from birth we never venture east” woman’s voice: “so tell me master hobbit why did you..”
Bilbo: ” I should left never Bag End “You know we have an saying the shire, we learn it from birth we never venture east”
PJ: And take three, lets have a look at the third one
Bilbo: “I should never have left Bag End “You know we have an saying the shire, we learn it from birth we never venture east” female voice “so tell me master hobbit..”
PJ: Yeah so you can sorta see it’s great because Martin gives you all these great choices its interesting too because on the wider shot, Martins performance, which tends to happen with, with, many actors um performance a little bigger, because the camera is further away and as you bring the camera closer in, it’s a natural instant too play
Jed: Draw the audience in
PJ: Yeah you draw the audience in, so, so it’s interesting
Jed: Also the first time you do it with when your doing the wide-shot you’re not really sure how things are going to go because you..
PJ: It’s almost like a rehearsal isn’t?
Jabez: That’s if you shoot the wide shots first
PJ: Yeah which we usually do try to , I mean normal practice in a movie is to shoot your wide shots first it’s its almost like a rehearsal, you just do as many takes you need to get it working and too give you the pieces of the wide I wanna use , but generally, you know, I,I use wide’s and you use them sparingly you know to set the scene, and the geography for where everybody is, but, but most of the time you want to go to these kinds of shots, this is the a third angle we got now, where we look at the camera very low inside the boat, where low because, we, were really featuring our Aidan who plays Kili
Jed: He’s the hot dwarve
PJ: Well I yeah, he’s one of them
Jed: He’s one of them
PJ: We got two hot dwarves in the shot
PJ: So, so let’s have a look at um this angel here, so again this is a different performance again everything your seeing is a different performance each time.
Bilbo: “I should never have left Bag End that was our first mistake, “You know we have an old saying the shire, we learn it from birth never venture east” woman’s voice: “so tell me master hobbit why did you venture..”
PJ: Take two
Bilbo: ” never have left Bag End that was our first mistake, “You know we have an old saying the shire, we learn it from birth never venture east” woman’s voice: “so tell me master hobbit why did you venture..”
PJ: So what’s interesting about that, was that the camera was following him up, and it was deliberate because I wanted to have Martin down below and let him pop out of the top of the shot because I thought that might potentially cutting point, that he exits the top of the frame and I could jump to a slightly wider shot, then we did, did chase him up to get the tail end of the line so I got the choice of using the tail end as a punch in on this close up too, because, see you sometimes when you are directing, your making those kind of decisions, um as you go
PJ: So there’s another angel here so let’s have a look at some more takes, so this one has got Bilbo and the hot dwarve
Bilbo: “never have left Bag End that was our first mistake, in the Shire we have this old saying we’ve known it since birth…”
Bilbo: “I should never have left Bag End that was my first mistake” in the Shire we have an old saying we’ve know in it since birth, never venture east!”
PJ: Yeah, basically that was different angles to cover Martin’s line, and then we shot other angels on other characters receiving the line so we can cut to reaction shots. as we need too, this was practically a long scene to shoot because as I said it was three or four pages long, and um it took us a couple of days to go through it all, but um we’ll just have a very quick look we’ll show you how we ended up cutting that little bit in the movie, just a few seconds long, and then ah we’ll move on with some more of our live event.
Kili: “It’s nothing, just a scratch”
Biblo: Its more than just a scratch it’s a wound, Goblins, Trolls, Wargs, none of that was in the contract, I should never have left Bag End that was my first mistake, we have an little saying in the Shire, we learn it from birth, never venture east!”
Bard: “so tell me master hobbit, why did you venture east?”
PJ: So that was the first look at Luke Evans, as Bard the bowman, now Luke has sent us a message, he wanted to say hi to everybody tuning into this live event, so shall we have a look at what Luke has to say
Hello everyone, this is Luke Evans, I play Bard The Bowman, um i unfortunately won’t be able to be at the live event , um uh gutted that I can’t be there to seems like it’s going to be a very fun uh day and Pete is going to give lots of tidbits about the second movie, but i thought I would like to join in and say hello, and say how exciting I am about, ah the second movie and seeing what Pete’s actually done so far, what he’s done with my character, um with Bard, looking forward in seeing how Bard is shaping up in the second film, uh its uh been quite awhile since I’ve played him now, last august was the last time so, I’m looking forward to coming back in June, and uh I get to put on the costume and the hair , the character and jump back into middle-earth which um I’ve missed quite a lot ah, so have a great day and ah just say hi to Pete, look forward to seeing you soon again my friend, and uh hello to all the fans, TheOneringe’rs, the Hobbitier’s, whatever else you want to call yourself your all fabulous, love your work, bye.
Jed: Bye Luke
Jed: Yeah so, when are you going to tell him he’s not in the movie anymore?
PJ: He’s absolutely in the movie the Jed we couldn’t lose Luke he’s fantastic, he is one of the really cool things in the second film
Jed: Yeah he is
PJ: Yeah there might be the odd dwarves’ who expendable, depending on behavior
Jabez: There are a lot of them
PJ: Yeah there are a lot of them yeah
Jed: Well I actually wanted to remind the viewers right now we do have a hash tag on the screen now, its hash tag ask peter live, and be sure to send in your questions to Peter you use the hash tag and we’ll be answering those live later on in the show
PJ: If I was to send a question in, if I can just say if I can send a question in over twitter I’d be saying, it will be a question for Jed, and I’ll be saying why the silly hair style?
PJ: Because at least in the movie we get to cover it with a wig
Jed: This is just, this was all done by Weta this whole lot
PJ: Okay great so were on, we’ve got some video questions I think, that we are going to be looking at, some of you very kindly sent in some questions over YouTube and we’ve selected a few and we’ve prerecorded our answers because we wanted actually edit in some clips and it was the easiest way for us to do that so you get to see some little glimpses of The Desolation of Smuag, so let’s look at it your questions, thank you.
PJ: So I have your questions here on the iPad, and we’ll have a look at them
Chris In The United States: Hey Peter Chris here hope all is well, I’ve heard it said that for you and your writers, the most difficult chapter in the lord of the rings trilogy to craft as a story was the Two Towers and that totally made sense being the middle chapter it has no definitive beginning and it doesn’t have a conclusive ending, um I was just curious if last year when you guys went from two films of the Hobbit to three films, if there was at least one or two or three moments, where your kind of kicking yourself going “ah we’ve just resurrected old problems giving ourselves, again that middle chapter”, so I guess my question to you is how has the process now been? on gong from two to three, and finding the emotional arc for this middle chapter Desolation of Smuag. Thanks
PJ: Yeah Well your right, I mean it is complicated to do a middle film um, but the advantages is that we have multiple story lines this time, the first of the Hobbit movies is a fairly liner film, you know Gandalf leads the dwarves, across middle-earth in the beginning of his adventure, the great thing about the second movie, as it was with the two towers actually is that the story starts to split into multiple story lines and we can follow different characters, as the story intensifies, and the stakes go up.
* Thranduil shots talking to captured dwarves*
PJ: When Tolkien wrote The Hobbit in 1937, he created the character Thranduil who is now being played by Lee Pace and some ten or fifteen years later, as he was writing the Lord of the rings, he wanted an elvish character to be part of the fellowship so he created Legolas, so when we visit the Woodland realm in the Hobbit it just seemed like a great opportunity for us to actually have Legolas there, he is Thranduil son and it just seemed natural, it also gives us a ability too, expand the story line for the Wood Elves something we where very interested in doing, we also go into the world of men, as well to Laketown and we .. The Master played by Stephen Fry.
*Stephen Fry dressed up as the The Master*
Stephen Fry: Now he’s here, he’s here the Master
PJ: Alfred his man servant, the Master of Laketown is, is a rather political figure in terms of the story line he does present an obstacle to the dwarves
PJ: So he’s a valuable character to have, and Stephen Fry just seemed like a natural to us.
Stephen Fry: I’m savvy… somebody has to take over the mantle from Orlando Bloom, as the most desirable figure to be in a Tolkien adaptation
PJ: There was a lot of Ironic humor, um an sartorial kind of edge to the Master in the way he, in the book Tolkien wrote, plus we certainly used that tone in the film, but rather than talk about the Master why don’t we actually hear from the man himself Stephen
Stephen Fry: Hello this is Stephen Fry here, I play the Master of Laketown, in The Hobbit two the desolation of Smaug, I can’t tell you sorry that I’m not in New Zealand at the moment, as we speak England is decimating New Zealand in cricket so that’s irrelevant that not the reason I want to be in New Zealand, though it’s good enough, I want to be in New Zealand because it’s a lovely place to be, but mostly because I just loved working on the Hobbit, um my part is in the Hobbit two and possibly The Hobbit three I don’t know, part of the glories book, magnificent book…
PJ: Surely Stephen won’t mind if we answer another question
Shaung Lui – China: Hello Peter we are from Beijing China we want to ask you some questions, I really like the role Legolas and uh its player Orlando Bloom, what’s the reason you choose him to play this role? um does he have some similarities with this role
PJ: Bloom doesn’t really have similarities to Legolas, he’s much more relaxed, laid back and is a really funny guy
PJ: were as Legolas tends to be a little um up tight shall we say
*exchange between Thranduil and Legolas*
PJ: So no I mean Orlando brings Legolas alive brilliantly as an actor but the character is very different to Orlando in person, in fact um why don’t we say hi to Orlando
Orlando Bloom: To all my dear friends, and what quite honestly my extended family at this point, down in New Zealand, Peter all the fans down there, I heard it’s a live event I’m really, sorry I can’t be there, nobody understands these worlds or this character quite like Peter so I um, I have a question for Peter, out of your crazy wild creative imitation, what moment are you most looking forward to seeing and appear on the screen? You don’t have to say Legolas, we all know it’s who its goanna be
PJ: Anything your in Orlando, anything thing your in is obviously brilliant, in fact so good we don’t need to debate it here, people can see for themselves in December, but um in terms of other scenes that other people are in I would say the confrontation between Smaug and Bilbo
*Shots of Smaug Lair with Bilbo*
Martin Freeman: Smaug, just woken up, so knows someone’s there, I have to put the ring on..
PJ: It’s probably the highlight of this particular movie for me it’s such an iconic Tolkien scene
PJ: We’ll just pop back to London to see if Stephen has anything more to add
Stephen Fry: Eye levels, orange spots and all that, more or less is my feeling is traditional acting, in real sets astonishing quality, I’m a extremely greedy character uh, uh corrupt character and its perhaps the only moment in wherein the Hobbit Tolkien gets into a bit of politics, satire on you know local government uh, I can’t tell you what kind of end I come too, um because I don’t actually know, that’s the mystery, I’m going back to help complete the film and we all hope that you get as much pleasure out of it as we have derived from making it..
*PJ flicks to next question*
Marinia – Canada: Hello Peter, my name is Marina, I want to ask will there be new characters and who they are, Hobbit’s is a great movie and love it uh thanks for watching me and I hope you will answer my question
PJ: Yeah well I mean the Hobbit has a lot of new characters um, that appear in the second movie the Desolation Of Smaug um, Thranduil who we saw very briefly in the prolog in the Unexpected Journey, Luke Evens as Bard the bowman
*cut to Luke Evans at Stone Street Studios*
Luke Evans: To all those brilliant fans, and I know there’s millions of you, I’m Bard the Bowman I’m part of the family now, am ah very glad to be here.
*cut back to editing room*
PJ: Luke is an absolutely traffic actor, and he has created a character with a sense of enigma about him he has a kind of almost Robin Hoodish kinda mystery slightly shady background
*shots of Bard in action*
PJ: Were having a lot of fun, a lot of fun with that character not really knowing whether he is a good guy or bad guy
*shoots of Tauriel*
PJ: But in terms of a new character if you literally want to say new character, in other words a character that doesn’t appear in Tolkien’s book we have created an Elvish character female character called Tauriel and Tauriel is like this bodyguard of the of Thranduil, she’s part of the elvens Woodland Guard, we call them there not the high elves, they are a more lowly form of elf, she certainly hasn’t got the status of say Legolas who’s the king’s son Evangeline Lilly plays Tauriel and where quite excited about the story line that we have created for Tauriel
*shots of Tauriel speaking elvish*
PJ: As you can see she’s uh, she’s not an elf guard to mess with
PJ: We have one last question so let’s have a look at that
Three kids from Brazil: Hi Mr Jackson I’m .. I’m … and where your biggest LOTR fans from brazil, um we recently moved to Brazil and LOTR has been in our family for many years, my older brother and sister where huge LOTR fans and went to premieres and uh your first movies of the Lord of The Rings, The Fellowship of the Ring and uh Return of the King, ah today we have a question for you our question is, what is your favorite Lord of The Rings or Hobbit weapon? ours you can see here Gloin’s and Gimli’s battle axe and or throwing axe all of his axes and uh yeah well it was an honor to be speaking to you, I hope you can answer our question, bye, bye
PJ: Sure love to answer your question, just happen to have my favorite Lord of The Rings weapon here, here it is its um Théoden’s sword, from Two Towers and Return of the King, Théoden um played by Bernard Hill, I just love this design of it, I love the fact it’s got sort of horses, um pretty much the culture of Rohan, it’s based on a almost Viking sword or Anglo-Saxon, early Anglo-Saxon sword, which is how the world of Rohan was really designed in the movies, and its, very, very heavy, I mean this is a real sword, its steel and brass, and it feels good, it actually very heavy you’d be surprised at how heavy it is, obviously when we were doing fight scenes, we usually create a much more light weight version of the sword for the actors to use, you wouldn’t wanna do .. anybody to get hit by this thing, and uh it is like a real sword, weapon made of steel , but look thank you very much for submitting those questions, it was a lot of fun and um, shall we just pop back to London and see how Stephens going
Stephen Fry: .. devoted to the Lord of The Rings trilogy and the first of the hobbits so we have a lot to um you know live up to I hope we done and give you some pleasure and some comedy as well as the share delight, the human spirit shines out, it is one of the great paradoxes of fantasy. It is true fantasy and humanity shines out … anyway not through.. I’m probably talking far ,far to much, and just wanted to say all my love sorry I can’t be at Peters side doing this very special DVD Extra, much love.
*PJ switches off Video*
PJ: Sorry about that Stephen I love you, but honesty you can’t expect to make those comments about the New Zealand cricket team, and get away unscathed, alright
Jed: Will we actually we have our first twitter question on screen right now, and is, Mr.Jackson during the film process how difficult is it too stay on track on plans?
PJ: I can very difficult, I mean, you know staying on schedule and on obliviously on budget is incredibly important, there’s nothing more stressful than going over budget on a movie but ah, sometimes you don’t have any control over it particularly with weather you know if we are filming outside and especially if you’re in a remote location and it happens to be pouring with rain, there’s not a lot we can do about we didn’t have a lot of that on this film didn’t we, it once or twice?
Jed: We had that one, two days at the end of location that we had to..
Jabez: That flooded out Nelson
PJ: Yeah we had to leave Nelson, which is actually a location that appears in the Desolation of Smaug, um where the dwarves are going down a river in barrels and we the police turn up on set telling us there was a flood warning there was a torrential storm about to hit us so we literally had to get everything out of there about two days ahead than we plan to, so those things are stressful but, you know, what I do in the morning is I show up I look at the script you know at I have to film that day, I rehearse with the cast first thing we do on a day shooting and then you literally plan out how many shots you can do that day, you know it depends on how difficult the shots are and how difficult the scene is it can vary, the number of camera angle shots, you can get in a particular day um, some days its as little as six or seven other days it could twelve or fourteen, and so you kind of know and you sit there and you plan it and actually you plow your way through the day to try to get to the end of it. but yup it is, one of the most stressful things about film making
Jed: We actually have another question, another video question for Peter, so ah shall we have a look to see who it is
Stephen Colbert: Peter Jackson, Stephen Colbert I got a question for you about the elves of Mirkwood or as it used to be called Greenwood The Great, now, here’s Mirkwood up here, I wanna know whether your making a diffraction between Thranduil and Legolas who are Sindarin and the elves who live in Mirkwood, their subjects who are “Avari” or “Noldor” or a mixture of “Avari” “Noldor” and Sindarin but there are lesser elves than Thranduil and Legolas in the Tolkien methous, are you showing that diffraction, that these elves are members of the ” Avari ” who did not heed the call around the shores of the Lake Cuivienen When Orome. came and called them to Valinor, are you taking that into consideration? Thank You
PJ: Yes, the answer to your question Stephen is yes, but I have actually have a question for you Stephen Colbert, you where very kind to invite me on your show last year and anyone who appears on the show, Jabez do you mind just handing me your mug, anyone who appears on the Colbert report show gets a free mug which is nice but it is quite small and when I was sitting at the table being interviewed, there was a much bigger mug sitting there and you know I like to have a big cup of tea several times a day and so I just happen to walk out with the largest sized mug, I don’t know how quite it happened but it is the one that was on the table one of your guests drink out off on air, now let’s just have a look at the difference between these two mug’s if we could, I’ll come closer to the camera, there you go, now can you see the difference? Basically the one that you give away for free has got dishwasher proof ink on it, the white ink stays, the one that your guests drink out off, look i mean all just worn away, this used to say the Colbert report but now it doesn’t, we’ve had this through the dish washer maybe once or twice and it just washed away, so my question for you Stephen is that the mug that the guests drink out of, do you ever clean it? do every you worry about spreading germs?
Jabez: When Peter steals something he likes it to be of certain quality
PJ: I didn’t steal it Jabez I mean I just happen to find it in my hand when I walked out of the building onto the street, I didn’t know how that happened. But it is apart from that it does actually taste quite nice the tea
Jed: Even if it has to be second hand
PJ: Yeah, yup
Jed: We actually, we do have a second twitter question up. Do you always edit barefoot?, Peter?
PJ: It’s actually a very good question and the answer is yes I do I, people I, I see, things written about me where they talk about me not wearing shoes on set, which I actually never do if you look of any footage of me,, I have to wear shoes because of health and safety don’t want a light to be dropped on my toe or something like that, but in the comfort, relative comfort of the cutting room, I can put my feet up on the table and sit back and its fantastic
Jed: Yeah, I wish I could do that
Jed: We actually have another special ah another guest, who would like to say hello, so why don’t we roll it and see who, who we’ve got
Lee Pace: Hi Lee Pace here, for those who don’t know I play Thranduil, King of the Woodland elves and in the Hobbit the Desolation of Smuag, I heard that Peter is giving a sneak peek of the new film and I’d figured that I’d logon and check it out, now you’ve seen a brief glimpse of my character in the prolog of the Hobbit An Unexpected Journey and the ancient animosity between the elves of the Woodland realm and the dwarves of Erebor, and I think it’s going to be really intriguing to revisit that but this time it will be in my halls on my terms, and I don’t think they are going to like it
PJ: Hmm elves are tricky aren’t they?
Jed: They are, they are very tricky and dwarves don’t trust them at all
PJ: And I don’t blame you
Jed: No, But we do have another question and this actually one from me
Jed: Jed what torture would you like to put Peter Jackson through that was inflected upon the actors? Hmm, rotacery, Barrel or maybe a combination of all of these things
Jed: I’m not actually sure that I want to do any of those things because I would quite like to work with you in the future, but um probably the one that I would like to put Peter through is maybe putting him on the rotacery over the top of the fire
PJ: That did look incredibly uncomfortable
Jed: It was very uncomfortable
PJ: That did look, and um there was one funny story that actually, that I remember, we had all these dwarves on if you remember the first Hobbit movie, we had these dwarves are on a spit being cooked by the trolls, they, we literally strapped everybody into this harness, when we rotated you guys around
PJ: We had to, like everything in a movie you where up there for hours being rotated around and around and then it seemed to go okay, Mark Hadlow looked very, very pale, even through prospect rubber make up when Jabez and I where editing the scene a few months afterwards that we, where watching every take we did, and we just heard very faintly on the sound track, which I never heard on the day, on the sound track we heard Mark Hadlow say in a very, very, sick weak voice, he plays Dori saying “can we stop doing this I think I’m going to be sick”
PJ: What’s funny we didn’t hear it on the day he kept rotating him around
Jabez: .. Mark said can we just stop for a couple of minutes please, and then, Peter says pretty loudly “ok and roll them” and away they go
Jed: we were stacked on top of each other we had ah ,um ah harness on the back of it had these kind of metal plates which were hooked onto it, we had to go up in a certain order so those who went up first where up there for a much longer time than Mark Hadlow
PJ: Well rather you then me I was in quite a comfortable chair at the time
Jed: Yeah no, it was fun, fun, actually we have another special guest, another surprised guest video, um so I think we should probably look at that see who it is
Billy Boyd: Hello I’m Billy Boyd I played Peregrin Took or Pippin in the Lord Of the Rings trilogy, so I hear tonight that Peter is doing a questions and answers, so I would like an answer to a question, and that question is, in the Fellowship we went as far as the Misty Mountains in middle-earth but here in The Hobbit we go further east, will we be seeing any new wild lands? In the next Hobbit film? that’s my question
PJ: That’s a very good question Billy, very good, very good, um, I think the most area’s of the lands we are going to is Mirkwood, we saw that very briefly in the Unexpected Journey, in the Desolation of Smuag the company of dwarves get right into the darkness the heart of darkness of Mirkwood, now actually Billy if you remember in The Fellowship of The Ring and you should remember it was only ten years ago um, you guys went through the Misty Mountains, through the Mines of Moria you came out and then the Fellowship headed south straight away, down the valley to Lothlorien and then you took the Anduin River down to Amon Hen, so you actually manage to very cleverly to bypass the borders of Mirkwood, entirely, which was probably a good thing, I can show you a bit of art work, um, I just pulled out a couple of pieces to give everyone a glimpse of what Mirkwood is going to look like in the movie, now if we can zoom in on that, are you able to get closer to it?, so what we’ve designed and um actually Gus Hunter did this art, is the tiny dwarves in this great big looming creepy forest, I wanted to try to give it a sense of foreboding and um grandeur and it used to be Greenwood the Great but it has become sick and diseased, with this Dol Guldur , the fortress Dol Guldur is spreading evil through the forest, and this is another view there’s dwarves there, there’s a broken bridge and they have to figure out a way to cross um this stream of Mirkwood, so yeah, I think that’s it’s going to be an interesting environment, one of the scarcer parts of this story.
Jed: Yeah the set itself was amazing to work with. it was pretty scary actually; it was very, very spooky set to work on and had that kinda dark feel about it, even from a physical perspective
PJ: Yeah, yeah,
Jed: That’s great, We have a have another question from a special cast guest I think we should cut to that and have a look to see who it is..
Evangeline Lilly: When I was working my ADR Philipa was naughty enough to show me, um the unfinished, mockup of Thranduil Realm, and it looked insanely cool but of course it didn’t have any of the amazing Peter Jackson love put into it and so I’m wondering if Peter you can verbally give us a glimpse into um what your vision your take on Thranduil realm will be?
PJ: Yes, let me show you Evangeline, I know it must be frustrating because your, your, I mean Evangeline was in the Woodland realm and yet we were pretty much surrounded by green screens… ah but I can give everyone a little look, so um Tolkien describes the Woodland Realm as being in like a subterranean world which is unusual for elves because usually dwarves live underground, but um, none the less that’s what have done, and this is a piece of art work John Howe did for us, if we can have a look at that, it’s the, it’s the entrance to the Woodland Realm, it’s a bridge a narrow bridge that goes over a raging river then you enter this elvish kingdom through this door, we wanted to make it seem like it’s very defensive and impregnable, this is the only way to get into this kingdom, and then once your inside, we tried to figure out a way to make a cavernous you know underground world look elvish in the way you expect a certain beauty and grandeur and so there’s light filtering in through the cracks in the ceiling, there’s, there’s roots of trees, they fashioned into bridges and this, is sort of the feeling….
Dominic Monaghan: The Hobbit questions and answers thing, and uh I want to be a little bit cheeky and ask a couple of questions myself, the first one what’s the best Peter Jackson rumor you’ve heard? That isn’t true? and the second one I’m compression to J.R.R. Tolkien’s work and your work, what’s the thing your the happiest about in the transferring of, from the literature to the film, mine would be the casting did you ever think of another Gimli another Gandalf another Frodo, another Merry obviously, this is the view from my house wild
PJ: Hey Dom thank you, um your question the rumor, the rumor question, craziest rumor, the one that made me laugh the most was just after the Lord of The Rings and there was a rumor going around Wellington, that was pretty strong because several people came up to me and said is this really true, really true like they believed it, is that um in order to avoid paying tax, um I was going to move my entire family onto a ship and live outside of the New Zealand economic zone, outside the twelve miles away from the coast to sort of my life on a ship, to avoid paying tax, apart being feeling sea sick, badly seasick, I’m very happy to live on land and very happy to pay tax, that was kind of a funny rumor
PJ: I guess somebody starts these things and then they just, in the case of um these movies rumors tend to become fact and you tend to see things reported in the newspaper, aren’t remotely true its um interesting, the world we live in
Jed: Indeed, we do have another twitter question now, and the question is will the Necromancer play a larger role in the plot of the Desolation of Smuag than it did in the first film?
PJ: uh, the answer is yes, that’s all I’m saying
Jed: Very conscience, well we heard we had an extra special treat for our viewers, do you know what that is?
PJ: I hope I know what it is, look um I didn’t want to wrap out of this live event without giving a little look at the movie, can’t show you the trailer yet, the trailer is still being made, as we speak um, visual effects being done, you can look for the trailer this summer, um films I’m sure no doub most of you will seet your going to see this summer, you’ll our trailer, but uh at the moment, with the film being edited we are literally, cutting it together we are limited on what we can actually show, we do have a sequence which Jabez and I have ,have worked on that, we thought would be fun to show, it needs a little setting up, it’s part of the, kind of appendixes Tolkien wrote part of the expansion of the Hobbit were doing its not in the actual Hobbit book itself, but it is building on the story line actually of the Necromancer and ah Dol Guldur, which was um, that we just talked about, if you remember Galadriel in The Unexpected Journey, um, and she was commenting on the Morgal blade that Radagast had recovered from Dol Guldur and she talks about it belonging to the King of Angmar who was buried in the High Fells, a mountains’ range in Rhudaur, so in the Desolation of Smaug, Gandalf goes to the High Fells, to investigate how this blade may have got out into this world, the High Fells are the tombs where the nine kings of men were buried, so shall we just have a look at a little clip from the movie.
*DOS movie clip*
PJ: Well there we go, so you can go and find out what happens next, a little mystery that Gandalf is following in the Desolation of Smaug, so Jed thank you very much for thank you for being, helping me get through this
Jed: Your welcome
PJ: Jabez, thank you
Jed: I wanted to thank the fans and of course, and for Peter for taking sometime out of your busy schedule editing the film to be with us
PJ: Great now um this is really, in a way to get a first got the chance to say hi to everyone in 2013, I’m sure that a lot of people who’ve who are watching this have been following our blogs, and just to let you know the blogs will continue this year, in fact this is almost like the first blog quite a long one
Jed: We should turn it into a trilogy
PJ: But the um the blogs will continue and ah we look forward to catching up with you during the year as we move towards our release in December, so thank you so much for taking the time, to come here and sit where ever you are in the world, whatever time it is and put up with us babbling along, and thank you for buying our DVD as well
Jed: Now it’s time for breakfast
*lots of clips from behind the scenes of DOS*