Adding to an already lengthy list of scholarly works related to J.R.R. Tolkien’s writings and artwork, Wayne G. Hammond and Christina Scull are putting the finishing touches on a new edition of The Adventures of Tom Bombadil and Other Verses from the Red Book, scheduled for release on October 4, 2014. Tolkien fans and scholars know the book, originally published in 1962, as a collection of entertaining poems wonderfully illustrated by artist Pauline Baynes. The original book contained 16 poems, some about Tom Bombadil, others related to Middle-earth, and still others unrelated to his invented fantasy world.
From Wayne and Christina’s webblog: “This new edition will contain the sixteen poems as published in 1962, together with the original drawings by Pauline Baynes. But it will also include earlier versions of the poems, where earlier versions exist – some of these were published in magazines and journals which are now hard to find – and it will reprint a later ‘Bombadil’ poem, Once upon a Time. In addition, we are very pleased to be allowed to publish for the first time, from Tolkien’s manuscript, the predecessor of Perry-the-Winkle, called The Bumpus, and the complete, tantalizingly brief fragment of a prose story featuring Tom Bombadil, in the days of ‘King Bonhedig’. To these, we have added an introduction, comments on the poems and on Tolkien’s preface, and glosses for unusual words, as we did previously for Roverandom and Farmer Giles of Ham.”
Those of us with well-worn copies of the book on our bookshelves will definitely want to add the new edition to our collections this October! Thanks to ringer malickfan for alerting us to this great news!
From scientific american.com: What does a narcissistic flying reptile that loves the taste of crispy dwarves have in common with a beetle that shoots hot, caustic liquid from its butt? More than you think.
A few weeks ago, audiences were finally treated to the Cumberbatch-infused reptilian villain from J.R.R. Tolkien’s classic The Hobbit. Smaug (pronounced and interpreted as if you smashed together “smug” and “smog”) is a terrible dragon that long ago forced a population of dwarves from under a mountain. He laid claim to all their treasures. He burned all their homes. The titular character of the book is then tasked with helping a company of these displaced dwarves take back the mountain from the beast. It wouldn’t be easy—the most common descriptor of a dragon is “fire-breathing,” after all. But unlike other aspects of the book and now the film that are wholly magic, Smaug’s burning breath is actually one of the least magical, and can be wrangled into plausibility. Doing so involves looking inside a beetle’s butt, a Boy Scout’s satchel, and a bird’s throat. [Read More]
For those of you who aren’t aware, TORn friend and award-winning author and screenwriter, Peter S. Beagle, has been on tour for a few months offering a Q&A and screening of the movie: The Last Unicorn based on his best-selling novel of the same name. I was lucky enough to attend a screening a few months ago and it was well worth it! This month, the tour goes to Bakersfield, CA, Fort Collins, CO and a number of cities in New Mexico. Check below for the full January schedule courtesy of Peter’s publicist, Connor Cochran, and check out the tour’s website for future screenings near you.
The first screening is this Saturday, at noon, at the Southside Works Cinema in Pittsburgh, PA. (Less than 48 hours away!) Any fan who wants to buy a ticket should go to https://southsideworks.ticketsclevelandcinemas.com/, select Saturday from the dropdown date menu, scroll down until you see THE LAST UNICORN showing listed, and then click on the time.
AS FOR THE REST OF JANUARY…
• Friday January 17, 7 PM: the Reading Cinemas Valley Plaza 16 in Bakersfield, CA
• Sunday January 19, 1 PM: the Harkins Flagstaff 11 Luxury, with the signing session afterwards at the local Barnes & Noble store. (This one is also different than usual because all ticket sales have to be directly through us, instead of the theatre. People wanting to buy tickets in advance should call 650-728-8098 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.)
• Wednesday, January 22, 7:30 PM: the Loft Cinema in Tucson, AZ
• Saturday, January 25, 11 AM & 6:30 PM & 9 PM: the Jean Cocteau Theatre in Santa Fe, NM. (And at 5 PM, as a separate ticket, there will be a special live-on-stage “fantasy summit” as Peter and George R.R. Martin interview each other!)
• Sunday, January 26, times to be announced, at the Lyric Cinema Café in Fort Collins, CO. (They may be showing the Bakshi LORD OF THE RINGS as well — still waiting to hear.)
In the gaps we’re still trying to set up shows in Las Vegas, Phoenix, and Las Cruxes/El Paso. Still in January, but after Fort Collins, we are working on possible shows in Denver, Colorado Springs, and Salt Lake City.
Here’s a thought-provoking article from Slate.com. We couldn’t help but notice the correction at the bottom of the story: “The caption for this story originally stated that Arwen and Aragorn are half-elf and half-human. Their lineage is apparently much more complicated than that.” Knowing fellow Tolkien fans, we imagine they received a comment or two (or twenty) to set them straight!
Are hobbits human and just really short? Or are they some entirely other species, like a gold-hoarding dragon? In high-school biology class they teach you to define species in terms of interbreeding. A horse is something that can make nonsterile babies with other horses; it may mate with a donkey, but since their offspring are sterile mules, horses and donkeys count as separate species. By that standard, the most relevant J.R.R. Tolkien passage comes from Appendix A of the Return of the King:
There were three unions of the Eldar and the Edain: Lúthien and Beren; Idril and Tuor; Arwen and Aragorn. By the last the long-sundered branches of the Half-elven were reunited and their line was restored.
It helps to recall here that Eldar is another word for elf and Edain is another word for human. Tolkien is saying here that there were two human-elf pairings in the backstory to the Lord of the Rings. One between Lúthien and Beren and another between Idril and Tuor. Both Arwen and Aragorn are descendants of one of these pairings. So when they get together in the course of the series, they reunite the half-elven lines. [Read More]
Those of you living near Newbury, U.K., should take advantage of this special screening of “The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug” being presented by the Corn Exchange theater on Tuesday, Januray 14, 2013:
Join actor Adam Brown (who stars as Ori in Peter Jackson’s film trilogy) for a Q & A session before the screening of the The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug. Having grown up in Hungerford, Adam was part of the Corn Exchange’s resident theatre company, Plested and Brown, and starred in the Corn Exchange’s annual pantomime for four years. He now returns to answer questions about working on major blockbuster films. Tickets cost just £15 of which £4.25 will be donated to the NSPCC (reg charity no. 216401) - see below for more information – and £4.25 will be donated to the Corn Exchange (Newbury) Trust (reg charity no. 0180567). [Read More]
J.R.R. Tolkien was born on this day, January 3rd, 1892. During his lifetime, he created a world that came to life in our imaginations, and that we’ve come to love and cherish. While many of us can recite some of his prose an poetry by heart, and are familiar with his illustrations that appear in his books, there’s a whole treasure trove of lesser know drawings and paintings by the mulit-talented man. The folks over at brainpickings.org have a nice little tribute on their site celebrating the amazing artwork of The Professor as presented in the beautifully illustrated “J.R.R. Tolkien: Artist and Illustrator” by Wayne G. Hammond and Christian Scull. Have a look and join TheOneRing.net in a resounding: ‘Happy Birthday Professor Tolkien!’
Have you finished all of your Christmas shopping yet? If you’re like us, you have a few more things on your list and what better way to complete the task than buying some Hobbity presents. TORns staffers Mithril and Altaira scoured the internet to find the perfect Hobbit-related presents to celebrate the holidays and the release of “The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug” and we were astounded by how many wonderful choices there are. So, without further ado, here (in no particular order) are our top 10 gift suggestions for your favorite Hobbit fan (even if that happens to be you). All amounts are in U.S. dollars.
1) The musical score special editions: Amazon (DOS $19.29; AUJ $21.15)
Journey from the Carrock through Mirkwood to Laketown and on to Erebor, swept up in the intricate and thrilling soundscapes of Middle-earth created by Academy Award-Winning Howard Shore. The special edition features twelve extended tracks, a bonus track, expanded liner notes and interactive sheet music packaged in a hardcover DigiBook.
The Desolation of Smaug sneak peak just ended and those of us who were lucky enough to see it I think will agree it was fabulous! It started with a short tour by PJ and Jed Brophy of Stone Street Studios that ended in the editing room. There, we were treated to many clips, finished and unfinished, of various parts of the movie in response to fan’s questions. It ended with a finished, trailer-like excerpt of Gandalf and Radagast in Dol Guldur, and maybe a dozen other shorter clips from filming and from the movie itself. Fabulous!
For those of you who missed it, fear not! Our staff is busy compiling detailed commentary complete with screen caps!! So, stay tuned here for much, much more. It will be posted here on the Home Page soon. Our friends at Warner Bros. also remind us that If you missed the Peter Jackson hosted first look at “The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug,” or just want to watch it over again, a modified version will be archived on the Trilogy’s official website www.thehobbit.com/sneak. To access the footage, use your UltraViolet code on your copy “The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey” Blu-ray Combo Pack, Blu-ray 3D Combo Pack or 2-Disc Special Edition DVD.
UPDATE: we’ve just been informed by Warner Bros. that we can post no screen caps of the sneak peek. We apologize for disappointing any of our loyal readers, especially those who weren’t able to see it. We *will*, however, be posting more details and commentary from our staff very soon!
Burbank, CA, February 5, 2013 – From Academy Award®-winning filmmaker Peter Jackson comes “The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey,” a production of New Line Cinema and Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Pictures (MGM), arriving on Digital Download on March 12th and on Blu-ray Combo Pack, Blu-ray 3D Combo Pack and 2-Disc DVD Special Edition on March 19th from Warner Bros. Home Entertainment. All disc versions feature UltraVioletÔ and over 130 minutes of bonus content.The first of a trilogy of films adapting the enduringly popular masterpiece The Hobbit, by J.R.R. Tolkien, “The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey,” which is nominated for three Academy Awards*, is an epic adventure that immerses audiences once again in the fantastical world of Middle-earth. The March 19th home entertainment release will be followed by an Extended Edition in time for the holidays.
In addition, Peter Jackson will host a live first look at “The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug,” the second film in The Hobbit Trilogy, on Sunday, March 24th at 3:00PM Eastern/Noon Pacific. Content will be streamed live and an edited version will be archived on the Trilogy’s official website. Access to the live event will be limited to holders of an UltraViolet code available by purchasing “The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey” Blu-ray Combo Pack, Blu-ray 3D Combo Pack or 2-Disc Special Edition DVD. Select digital retailers will issue access codes upon purchase of the film. Visit www.thehobbit.com/sneakfor more information.
From the L.A. Times: Warner Bros. has succeeded in blocking the release of a low-budget knockoff the same week that “The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey” hits theaters. A federal judge has issued a temporary restraining order against Tuesday’s scheduled DVD and online release of “Age of the Hobbits” from “mockbuster” factory Global Asylum. Judge Philip S. Guttierez found that Global Asylum’s movie was likely to cause some confusion among consumers. Read More…
For those of you who haven’t seen it yet, Warner Bros. made TV spot #12 available on their facebook page today. This spot is mostly a re-shuffling of previously seen footage, but we do catch a glimpse of wargs being ridden and Gandalf striking the ground with his glowing staff. The length of this TV spot is similar to most of the others, weighing in at 34 seconds. This is just the thing to get you through to the movie openings which start in less than 48 hours! Have a look.
Just when we think we’ve seen the geekiest of Tolkien/Hobbit geekiness, it gets even geekier! Ringer and international attorney, Scott Maucere, couldn’t resist applying his legal expertise to the analysis of Bilbo’s contract with Thorin and his party of dwarves in his legal blog. Per Scott: “here is likely the only legal analysis of Bilbo’s contract you will ever have the pleasure (or pain) to read.” Scott makes it clear that he’s analyzing the contract in the book, not the one in The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey but, of course, there are many parallels. One disclaimer Scott makes: “Keep in mind that while I practice international law, Middle-earth most certainly falls outside of my area of experience.” Fair enough, Scott, fair enough. Read more…
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