Everyone here at TheOneRing.net would like to wish all our followers happy times in this festive season! Whatever holiday you celebrate, we hope you can eat, drink and be Merry – or the hobbit of your choice – and that you’ll all have opportunities to gather with loved ones. May you find light in dark places, and unexpected turkeys floating by just when you need them…
We’ve been a bit quiet here lately, but rest assured, TORn isn’t going anywhere. We’ll still be bringing you news as and when we have it, and we look forward to fun times with you all in 2016. Cheers!
Are you of Sam’s opinion, that Gollum is just a ‘stinker’, with ‘naught left in him but lies and deceit’? Or are you on Frodo’s side, believing Smeagol has good in him yet? Does he redeem himself at the end, with his sacrifice, or does an accidental tumble into lava not count for redemption?
In a bizarre piece of news, a court in Turkey has called in experts to debate this very issue. A doctor is accused of insulting the Turkish President by comparing him to Gollum; his lawyer is arguing, in his defense, that Gollum is not a bad character – so a team of five (including a ‘movie expert’) has been put together to decide.
What would your decision be, if you were called to sit on such a panel?!
Read more about this news story here and here. Thanks to spies davem, Lanirth and Manitou333 for sending us the news!
You know what Bilbo had to say about adventures: ‘Nasty disturbing uncomfortable things! Make you late for dinner!’ But Professor Tolkien’s own great-grandson, Royd Tolkien, is ignoring all that Bilbo had to say and taking the plunge into a significant adventure of his own!
Royd very sadly lost his younger brother, Mike, earlier this year. Mike had ALS, also known as Motor Neurone Disease, or Lou Gehrig’s Disease. Royd had to watch his active, thrill-seeking brother succumb to a terrible disease, for which there is currently no cure.
But Mike left Royd a legacy – a ‘bucket list’ of fifty challenges for the much more Bilbo-like (ie less thrill-seeking, more cake-and-tea-enjoying!) older brother Royd to undertake. And Royd is going to fulfil that list, with the help of none other than actor Jed Brophy, surrounded by the beautiful scenery of Middle-earth – by which I mean, of course, New Zealand.
This is a remarkable quest, and one which you will be able to see – because Royd is going to make a film of his adventures! Read more about the amazing journey the Professor’s great-grandson has ahead of him at Royd’s website, here. You can also get involved, support Royd on his odyssey, and maybe grab yourself a pretty amazing perk with some Middle-earth cast or crew (including Richard Taylor and folks at Weta!) – learn more here.
It’s a dangerous business, going out your front door – especially when you have no idea what challenges your little brother has left, to test, stretch and possibly humiliate you! Here at TORn we wish Royd every success, and joyful travels; and we honour the memory of Mike, of TORn’s friend Mel, who also sailed into the West far too early, and to all who battle ALS.
For fans who have been waiting to get their hands on actual disks before watching The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five ArmiesExtended Edition, today is the day when releases begin! The Blu-ray and DVD sets are available today in America, Nov 18th in New Zealand (so almost today already in NZ!), and across Europe and the rest of the world in the coming days. (Read our International Shopping Guide for further details.)
This is the Home Entertainment release which completes the set for all fans of Peter Jackson’s Middle-earth movies. Many have written how the extra footage in the extended cut makes this the version of The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies that they wanted to see. (You can read some staffers’ thoughts here.) Others have commented that they had hoped for the full extra 30 minutes Peter Jackson had said would be in this cut, not just the 20 minutes we got. There are certainly more scenes I had hoped to see – but that is where the Appendices come in…
At last we have parts Eleven and Twelve of The Appendices; parts One and Two came out with the Extended Edition of The Fellowship of the Ring, so this has been a long time coming! It’s great – if sad – to see the end of this journey. The tales from the set, behind-the-scenes glimpses, and memories from cast and crew are wonderful, and give us some insight into moments we perhaps wish had made it into a cut of the movie. Have tissues ready for the filmmakers’ ’emotional farewell to Middle-earth’!
There are over NINE hours of bonus features included in this Home Entertainment release, so it really is an essential part of your The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit movie collection. In the 2D version, the disc with the film also includes Part 3 of ‘New Zealand: Home of Middle-earth’; Disc 2 contains The Appendices Part 11: The Gathering Storm, The Chronicles of The Hobbit – Part 3; and Disc 3 is The Appendices Part 12: Here at Journey’s End. There is also audio commentary on the film, with Peter Jackson and Philippa Boyens; I haven’t had a chance to watch with the commentary yet, but I’m sure it’s fascinating. I’d still like, at some point, to have some commentary from the cast – maybe that will come with the ‘super mega all-six-films’ box set….? (For the completists amongst us, you can already purchase the Extended Edition Box Set, also available today.)
Whether you prefer the Theatrical or Extended cuts of these films (and I think most of us come down on the side of the Extended Editions), it is really the bonus features which make this Home Entertainment release a ‘must have’. If you are patient enough to wait, maybe it’s one for your Holiday Gift wish list? (Look out for TORn’s Holiday Gift Guide, coming soon!)
Now if you’ll excuse me, I need to get back to watching those nine hours of extras….
In celebration of the release today of The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies Extended Edition Blu-ray and DVD, we have another EXCLUSIVE clip to share with you! From the behind the scenes footage in the Bonus Features, this gives us a little more insight into dwarven armour. (Cosplayers, who will be the first to make Thorin’s unseen ‘Ram’s head’ armour??)
As you know, last week a select group of fans in London were treated to a screening of The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies Extended Edition. Some pretty special guests were in attendance – we hope many of you were able to watch via the live stream!
The organisers behind the event have sent us along this report:
“On Saturday, 7th November 2015, a number of the world’s biggest and most passionate fans of TheHobbitfilm trilogy assembled in London for a very special screening event, where they were joined by a host of special guests, to celebrate the release of The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies – Extended Edition on Blu-Ray, DVD and Digital release, and to commemorate the one-year anniversary of last year’s incredible The Hobbit Fan Fellowship Contest competition. The Warner Bros. Home Entertainment release is the final film in the globally popular The Hobbit Trilogy, a production of New Line Cinema and Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Pictures.
Kyle Pedley of (A)musings Media, who was among the UK-based winners of the global fan competition, organised and hosted the event along with fellow members of The Hobbit Fan Fellowship, with help from Warner Bros. Pictures UK and Tourism New Zealand. International winners flew in from all over the globe – from as far afield as the United States, Mexico and Eastern Europe – to take part in an evening full of surprises and special appearances.
Guests were not only treated to an exclusive UK screening of the Extended Edition of The Hobbit Trilogy’s epic conclusion at Warner Bros. Pictures’ own private screening theatre ahead of its home entertainment release, but were also treated to surprises including a video message from director Sir Peter Jackson all the way from New Zealand, and a Q&A session with a panel of distinguished guests.
These included Royd Tolkien, great-grandson of author J.R.R. Tolkien and long-time advocate and supporter of the film adaptations (who made a cameo appearance in 2003’s The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King), and writer / broadcaster Brian Sibley, who has long been involved in the community celebrating the author’s legacy, having been jointly responsible for the acclaimed 1981 BBC Radio adaptation of The Lord of the Rings and penning a number of official behind-the-scenes books and guides for both of Peter Jackson’s Middle-earth trilogies. Finally, to the excitement and disbelief of fans – met with an uproarious standing ovation – came the surprise appearance of film, theatre and television icon Sir Ian McKellen, known and beloved around the world for his defining portrayal of the Wizard Gandalf in Jackson’s Middle-earth and the only principle cast member to appear in all six films across both celebrated film trilogies.
Other special guests in attendance included a contingent of Middle-earth ‘cosplayers’ – The Galactic Knights, who showcased some of their terrific Hobbit- and Rings-inspired costumes and replicas; Chairman of The Tolkien Society, Shaun Gunner; and Rachel Sprackett of Tourism New Zealand.
Kyle Pedley, The Hobbit Fan Fellowship member and host of the event, said:
“This was an incredible, unprecedented celebration of the impact both these films and also last year’s incredible competition have had on people from all corners of the globe. To have such a dedicated group of fans, who last year formed their own genuine fellowship over the course of a magical week in New Zealand, reunite for this special occasion was just an absolute joy to behold and be part of. To be joined by the likes of Royd Tolkien, Brian Sibley and Sir Ian McKellen, and have such a fantastic personal video message from Sir Peter Jackson over in New Zealand, was an absolute thrill and honour. The guests were not aware or expecting any of it, and their reactions to not only the surprises, but also getting to see one another again, were a moving reminder of how indelible and genuine the bonds of fellowship formed in New Zealand really were.”
The Hobbit Fan Fellowship Contest was an international search conducted in 2014 by Tourism New Zealand, Air New Zealand and Warner Bros. to find 75 of the world’s biggest Hobbit fans. Over 140,000 people registered for the competition, and over a two month period were required to complete a series of tasks and challenges, including testing their knowledge of New Zealand as the cinematic Middle-earth, designing a postcard for Peter Jackson, and also producing their own two-minute videos detailing their favourite memories of Middle-earth and demonstrating why they were the biggest fans of the franchise.
The winners and their +1s were then flown to New Zealand for an incredible, all-expenses paid trip which spanned both Islands and included visits to the actual filming locations from the movies, a special tour of the Hobbiton Set itself in Matamata, a special Maori Cultural welcome ceremony and Hangi Banquet, a visit to Weta Workshop where all of the creatures, costumes, weapons and special effects of the Middle Earth films were made, and finally a private screening of the final film, The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies, in the company of Peter Jackson himself, over a month before its theatrical release.”
Earlier this week, we told you about a special event happening this weekend, Saturday 7th November, in London (UK), when The Hobbit Fan Fellowship and Warner Bros. are hosting a special screening of The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies Extended Edition. A little bird has told us there are going to be some pretty great surprises at this invitation-only gathering!
Fortunately, even if you can’t be in London or didn’t win an invitation, you can still join in! The event will be LIVE STREAMED, and we’re told that those watching over the internet will even be able to join in and interact.
We can’t share any more details of exactly what will be happening in London – we’re keeping it secret and safe! – but we suggest you join the live stream on Saturday if you can. Here are the details:
[Please note, TheOneRing.net is not in any way involved with the planning and streaming of this event. We can’t help fix it if the stream doesn’t work for you! We’re just sharing the news so fans around the world are aware of this fun happening.]
This weekend, Saturday 7th November, in London (UK), The Hobbit Fan Fellowship and Warner Bros. are hosting a special screening of The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies Extended Edition. And YOU could join them!
We’re told that the evening will include ‘a couple of surprises’ – and of course it’s a chance to see the final Hobbit movie, in its full extended version, on the big screen; as well as spending time with fellow fans. The competition is open worldwide, but in order to take advantage of the prize, you’d have be to sure you – and a friend! – can get to London this coming weekend!
You can find more information about the competition here; and click here to enter. The contest closes on Thursday at 12noonGMT – so get on over there and sign up! We look forward to hearing about another splendid Fan Moot!
Today sees the release of an exciting new publication from Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. It’s a beautiful book of Tolkien’s art: The Art of The Lord of the Rings by J R R Tolkien, with text by well-known scholars Wayne G Hammond and Christina Scull.
All of the art in this amazing book is by Tolkien himself, and more than half of it has never been published before. Included are maps, inscriptions, plans and sketches, all printed in colour. Through rough drafts and early ‘jottings’, we see the development of designs such as the inscription on Balin’s tomb, and the wonderful Doors of Durin. It is fascinating to see, for example, an early idea for Dunharrow become a beautiful ‘finished’ illustration – on the back of which, as his ideas changed yet again, Tolkien wrote, ‘no longer fits story’.
There is so much to see and learn in this edition – it is crammed with riches! At the very end of the book, for instance, is an Air Raid Warden’s Report Form, on which Tolkien has sketched some kind of contour. It wasn’t only exam papers which the Professor used for notes and ideas!
This gorgeous publication, filled with details and insights, is a must for any Tolkien collection. It is available for purchase online; but thanks to our friends at HMH, you can WIN a copy! The publishers are giving one lucky winner a copy of the book, and a mug which reads ‘Second Breakfast is the Best Breakfast’. Just click here to enter.
(Sorry, everyone outside the US – this competition is for US mailing addresses only. You must be 18 or older to enter.)
Here it comes – the final release from Peter Jackson’s Middle-earth!
Many fans gathered in cinemas this week, on Monday and Wednesday, to watch The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey and The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug, both Extended Editions, on the big screen. Staffers greendragon, deej and CAhobbit went along to the Empire 25 cinema in Times Square on Wednesday night; it was a joy to see these films in theatres again. Nothing beats being able to see every beautiful detail of the set, props, costumes and locations, and every wonderful expression from the cast – some of which is lost when enjoying the movies at home.
On Tuesday of next week, October 13th, fans will finally get to see the final Hobbit film in the cut which Peter Jackson wanted. The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies Extended Edition is screening in theatres next week – and thanks to our friends at Fathom Events, YOU can win passes to a cinema near you!
Simply click here to find a cinema location where you would like to see the movie – click ‘buy tickets’ and then enter your zipcode to see where the movie is showing. Next, complete the contest entry form, indicating in the ‘Special Notes’ box the cinema of your choice. Hit ‘Enter Now!’ to submit the form, and you are in with a chance to win!
The contest will run until 11.59pm EST on Sunday 11th October. Two winners will be selected at random on Monday 12th, and Fathom Events will email those winners FOUR passes for their chosen cinema, for Tuesday evening.
These lucky winners will ALSO receive two Lord of the Rings figurines, chosen at random from Aragorn, Saruman, Sauron and Orc figures.
The bad news – alas, this contest is only open to residents of the US, as that is where Fathom Events are screening the movie. Sorry, fans in the rest of the world – you’ll have to wait until the movie is available online, from October 20th.
It’s almost time to gather in the Big Apple and enjoy all that New York ComicCon has to offer. As ever, TheOneRing.net will be there! Here are a few details for you:
We’ll be at Booth 3040, which – to make life simple! – is the same location as last year! We’ll have all the usual goodies for sale – plus this year we’ll have hoodies from our friends at LotH Hoodies! Of course we’ll have many fabulous things you could win! And we’ll be ready just to chat and geek out with our fellow fans.
Talking of which – if you want to chat in a quieter location than the convention floor, this year we’re leading a ‘Fan Forum’ discussion group! Basically it’s a chance to join us to reminisce about the past seventeen years – since TheOneRing.net was founded and since Peter Jackson began pre-production in earnest on his Lord of the Rings trilogy. What a journey it’s been! Come and share memories with us – and maybe hear a bit about what we may see in The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies Extended Edition (which, as you know, screens in cinemas on October 13th!) Find the Forum in room 1E03, Friday 4pm. Click here for details!
And don’t forget about our PARTY! Thursday 8th October 8-11pm at The East Wing – a few tickets remain! Click here to buy. WETA will be co-hosting with us, and as usual your ticket includes the buffet, your first drink, a goody bag and two raffle tickets – all in a wonderful, private venue in Manhattan. Hope to see you there!
You’ll find our WETA friends at Booth 622. Middle-earth guests at the convention this year include Sean Bean, John Noble, John Rhys-Davies and Elijah Wood!
As ever, we have a host of folks supporting us to make it possible for us to be at New York ComicCon. Many thanks to them all:
ROW NYC – making sure hard-working TORn staffers have somewhere to sleep. A great place to stay in Manhattan!
This site is maintained and updated by fans of The Lord of the Rings and the name and mark ONE RING is used under license from The Saul Zaentz Company, which hold the title thereto. We in no way claim rights in the artwork displayed herein. Copyrights and trademarks for the books, films, articles, merchandise and other promotional materials are held by their respective owners and our limited use of these materials is done by permission or is allowed under the fair use clause of the Copyright Act.