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Archive for the ‘Lord of the Rings’ Category

Viggo Mortensen returns to his ranging ways in ‘Captain Fantastic’

Viggo Mortensen in Captain Fantastic.

Viggo Mortensen in Captain Fantastic.

Park City, Utah — Viggo Mortensen is back to his ranging ways, living off the land and keeping an eye on trouble in his new film “Captain Fantastic.” TORn spoke with him on the red carpet at the film’s world premiere at the Sundance Film Festival in Park City, Utah.

Mortensen plays a father who, along with his wife, has decided to raise his children off the grid — way off. He seeks to raise his six children to be self reliant in a way that LOTR character Aragorn would be proud of. They can stalk and kill deer with knives, they climb mountains, harvest edible food, learn to make their own clothes and along the way read the best books. They are, in short, philosopher kings.

So did he think back to his character and filming experience on “Lord of the Rings,” with Peter Jackson?

“I thought of it,” he said. “But I also thought of my time as a father in Idaho.”

He spent time with his son there and in the film he has more, but in both he said he was teaching to be aware of nature.

Viggo Mortensen in new film Captain Fantastic

Viggo Mortensen in new film Captain Fantastic

“You are only as good as the team you are working with,” said Mortensen. “It is about a family and made by a family.”

He said the cast spent time before filming getting to know each other and learning the skills needed to be authentic on screen. They camped and learned how to grow food and skin a deer and learned to play music together, all of which were important to the film.

The children’s performances are all excellent, as is Mortensen’s. The film captivated Sundance audiences and good news for Mortensen and film fans, it was also picked up for distribution by Bleeker Street. It specializing in specialty cinema and has this year’s “Trumbo” (Bryan Cranston of “Breaking Bad” fame as lead actor) and should hit audiences in July.

Its premiere at the Eccles Theater, the largest Sundance offers with over 1,300 seats, responded mightily the film’s opening night. Director and writer Matt Ross, who you might know as Alby Grant from HBO’s “Big Love,” received a standing ovation, as did the children. But it was Moretensen who received the hottest reception. He is a pillar of the film and he is sympathetic and yet outside societal norms. He is perfect for the part.

“Good movies ask a lot of questions but don’t necessarily answer them,” Ross told TORn just before the premiere.

In the film his family must leave their forest paradise and journey into the highly-populated world with all its social expectations and demands. They all must face traditional society and family bonds and the children’s unconventional education are tested.

“I am a dad and there is no such thing as a perfect father and mother and this character is doing the best he can,” Mortensen said.

The film wasn’t rated at Sundance but the unconventional cast isn’t afraid to use unconventional language that may earn it an R rating. And, Mortensen having a cup of coffee in his birthday suit probably erases any chance of it being anything else. Yes, Mortensen gives the film everything he has to offer.

“Captain Fantastic” is full of ideas, exploring family and fatherhood. Some parents will leaving feeling horribly inadequate.

Fans of Mortensen will not want to miss yet another fascinating role in a fascinating film.

Posted in Lord of the Rings, LotR Cast News, Viggo Mortensen

Today in Middle-earth, February 14

The following event(s) took place in Middle-earth on February 14th:

  • The Mirror of Galadriel (1419)
  • Gandalf returns to life, and lies in a trance (1419)

(more…)

Posted in Calendar, Lord of the Rings, LotR Books, Today in Middle-earth

Bilbo, Gandalf and Frodo are REAL People!

Library of Congress reading-room At least, as far as the Library of Congress is concerned.

(more…)

Posted in Characters, Hobbit Book, J.R.R. Tolkien, Lord of the Rings, LotR Books, The Hobbit, Tolkien

Dominic Monaghan: David Bowie auditioned for The Lord of the Rings

David-Bowie-LabyrinthIn a recent interview with The Huffington Post, Dominic Monaghan told of a chance encounter in the Hubbard’s casting agency reception area with none other than David Bowie.

“I was at the Hubbard’s, which is a pretty notorious casting agency office in London, doing an audition for ‘Lord of the Rings,’ and when it ended I went over and talked to John Hubbard, who was running the audition, and he said, ‘Hey, it went really well. You should wait around for 5 or 10 mins. We’ll give you some feedback,” He continued, “I thought, ‘Oh, OK, cool, and I sat in the reception office. As I was reading a magazine waiting, David Bowie came in and signed his little list and went in. And I’m assuming he read for Gandalf. I can’t think of anything else he would’ve read for. He may have read for something else, but I’m a huge David Bowie fan, and I was lucky enough to know his son now so just seeing him in person was pretty special to me.”

(more…)

Posted in Casting Calls, Director news, Lord of the Rings, LotR Movies, Movie Fellowship of the Ring, Movie Return of the King, Movie The Two Towers, Peter Jackson

The Greyscale

boromirWelcome to our latest Library feature, in which Benita J Prins discusses the belief that Tolkien characters are either totally good, or totally bad, and therefore his characterizations are two-dimensional.  She shows that Tolkien did, in fact, write characters that aren’t good, but aren’t entirely bad, and they appear in all of his works.

(more…)

Posted in Characters, Fans, Fellowship of the Ring, Green Books, Headlines, Hobbit Book, J.R.R. Tolkien, Lord of the Rings, LotR Books, Other Tolkien books, Return of the King, Silmarillion, The Hobbit, The Two Towers, TheOneRing.net Community, Tolkien

Peter Jackson steps down as WETA Workshop director

Image from Startraks/Rex Shutterstock

From stuff.co.nz: Peter Jackson along with fellow Oscar winner Jamie Selkirk stepped down from Sir Richard Taylor’s Miramar workshop on December 31, Companies Office documents show. The change comes ahead of new legislation which would make directors personally liable for health and safety, which the Institute of Directors said demonstrated that directors needed to be across all aspects of the business. Jackson and Selkirk both still own about one third of Weta Workshop.

Weta Workshop senior communications manager Erik Hay confirmed the law change was behind the move for Jackson and Selkirk. “The reason was centred around the law change, which will require them to be more involved on a daily basis. As a manufacturing business, it’s important they are. Peter felt he was not and decided to step out of the piece. They will still retain shares in the company.” Read more…

Posted in Director news, New Zealand, Peter Jackson, Richard Taylor, WETA Workshop

Today in Middle-earth, January 15

Gandalf challenges Balrog w Glamdring

Today in Middle-earth, January 15

  • The Bridge of Khazad-dûm, and the fall of Gandalf (1419)
  • The Company reaches Nimrodel late at night (1419)

(more…)

Posted in Calendar, Lord of the Rings, LotR Books, Today in Middle-earth

A Wellington Weta Adventure!

Autumn had finally arrived in northern California when I boarded a plane to head into spring on the other side of the planet in New Zealand. To say I wasn’t frightened would be a lie. I felt very much like Frodo heading out into the wide world, for I was about to be away from my family and my continent for longer than I ever had. The weather in Wellington had been pleasant until I arrived, or so I’m told, and as more and more cold rainstorms blew into the bay off the Pacific, my co-workers at Weta Workshop teased that I had brought winter with me to their beautiful island nation.

IMG_20151103_121307234_HDR

The flight from Auckland to Wellington, NZ

Like most fans of the The Lord of the Rings films, I had long dreamed of visiting New Zealand and seeing as much of its Middle-earth landscape as I could. However, also like most fans, the cost of such an adventure always held me back. As such, if someone had told me that I would have gone to Aotearoa twice in 2015, I would’ve thought they were as full of tall tales as old mad Baggins! But step out my front door I did, each time with a little nudge.

(more…)

Posted in Fans, Happy Hobbit, Hobbit Movie, John Callen, Lord of the Rings, LotR Movies, LotR Production, New Zealand, The Hobbit, Tolkien, Uncategorized, WETA Cave, WETA Workshop

Those Lord of the Rings women

eowyn1We all love to love the male characters of the Lord of the Rings movies. Who’s heart doesn’t go out to Frodo and Sam? Who doesn’t cheer at Gandalf and Aragorn’s strength or cringe at the sheer evilness of Saruman and the Witch King? These and other male characters are front and center in terms of movie screen-time, and rightly so, but it also makes the appearance of the women of the movies that much more special.

Over at Bustle, the women of The Lord of the Rings movies get the limelight in this article that ranks nine of The Lord of the Rings women in terms of character development. Rosie Cotton, Galadriel and even Shelob get a mention! Read more

Posted in Cate Blanchett, Liv Tyler, Lord of the Rings, LotR Movies, Miranda Otto, Movie Fellowship of the Ring, Movie Return of the King, Movie The Two Towers

Washington D.C. NFL pros embrace Tolkien

Lord of the Rings CoverTORn’s staff and our readers know from experience that Tolkien fans can sometimes be found in surprising places. So, imagine our delight when we learned through this Washington Post story that there aren’t just Tolkien fans on the Washington D.C NFL team, quotes from The Lord of the Rings are regularly heard in the locker room and even on the playing field!

The board was set, the pieces were moving, and victory was in hand, but Kirk Cousins needed a little help with his lines.

“Is it the third day or the fifth day you’ve got to look to the East?” Cousins asked teammate Tom Compton on the FedEx Field sidelines, as the clock counted down Washington’s triumph over the Bills.

Compton grimaced at the memory, still aghast that his quarterback would need to ask.

“I was like, ‘It’s the fifth day, bro,” Compton recalled. “Like, c’mon.”

Information secured, Cousins delivered the lines that welcomed the world into his team’s growing “Lord of the Rings” fascination.

“Today, the gray became the white,” Cousins announced, as they closed in on a division championship. “We look to the East.”  Read more…

Note: out of respect for our Native American readers (and non-readers) a word that is viewed by many as a racial slur has been removed from the headline and body of this article. We overlooked that in our attempt to reword the headline of the source article. We’d like to apologize to any of our readers who might have been offended, and encourage everyone to focus on the true intent of linking to the story which was to highlight how Tolkien fandom helps us all transcend labels and brings us together as a community, sometimes in the most unlooked for ways.

 

 

Posted in Fellowship of the Ring, Hobbit Book, Hobbit Movie, Lord of the Rings, LotR Books, LotR Movies, Return of the King, The Hobbit, The Two Towers

Happy Birthday, J.R.R. Tolkien!

J.R.R. Tolkien124 years ago today, on January 3, 1892, John Ronald Reuel Tolkien was born in Bloemfontein Africa. Forty-five years later, in 1937, his book The Hobbit, was published which he had written for his children. Together with its sequel, The Lord of the Rings, it launched generations of readers on adventures through the invented world of Middle-earth that would impact many of us for the rest of our lives.

Today, we here at TORn join millions of fans worldwide in celebrating Tolkien’s birthday. On this day, you might read a favorite passage or two from Tolkien’s writings or, like many of our message board members, you might even be in the midst of your annual read-through of The Hobbit and/or The Lord of the Rings.

Many fans will be gathering at local pubs with fellow member of the Tolkien Society to raise a glass to: “The Professor!” If you’d like to learn more about the annual January third tradition, or even find a local gathering near you, visit the Tolkien Society’s Tolkien Birthday Toast 2016 page here.

However you decide to celebrate, join us in wishing a happy birthday to “The Professor,” who’s life’s work has come to mean so much to us. Happy birthday, J.R.R. Tolkien!

Posted in Events, Fans, Fellowship of the Ring, Hobbit Book, J.R.R. Tolkien, Lord of the Rings, LotR Books, Meet Ups, Other Events, Return of the King, The Hobbit, The Two Towers, Tolkien, Tolkien Toast

EW interviews Peter Jackson about Christopher Lee

SarumanCheck out this wonderful Entertainment Weekly interview with Peter Jackson about his experiences with, and memories of, the actor who brought J.R.R. Tolkien’s wizard Saruman to life for millions of loving fans. You’ll chuckle at PJ recalling some comical moments, but have a box of tissues ready because you just might shed a tear too.  Read more…

Posted in Christopher Lee, Director news, Fran Walsh, Hobbit Movie, Lord of the Rings, LotR Movies, LotR Production, Movie Fellowship of the Ring, Movie The Two Towers, New Zealand, Peter Jackson, The Hobbit