This is it! The Finals are set! An epic battle of historic proporations! In one corner we have Gandalf, the Istar responsible for helping save the fate of all Middle-earth. In the other, Bilbo Baggins, the Hobbit who would successfully weild and then, more importantly, pass on the most powerful object in Middle-earth, The One Ring.
Since this is the finals, we are not going to share the results until the contest is complete. So you will NOT see a percentage of votes when you cast your own vote. Don’t fret, the committee will be monitoring the competition behind the scenes.
Middle-earth March Madness has been touched by scandal! When we tallied the votes in our Elite Eight round-up last night, we noticed the votes in The Hobbit division were suspciously more than those of the other divisions. While yes, certain match-ups spur passionate participation, the numbers on this particular match-up were significantly different. So we dug a little bit deeper. As it turns out, one person managed to bypass the system and vote 2300 times!
As the commissioner of Middle-earth March Madness, I took it upon myself to resolve the issue. I converted those 2300 votes to 1 vote. I also reviewed any other multiple votes and converted those to a single vote. As a result, the winner of The Hobbit division for 2015 is…. Bilbo!
So we have our Final Four!
The Silmarillion division winner is, not too surprisingly, the creator of all existence, Eru Ilúvatar. Eru will face off against Bilbo Baggins, fresh off an attempt to wipe him out of this entire tournament!
Coming out of The Lord of the Rings, non other than Gandalf! Can he easy sweep past The Others division winner, Hurin? Or will Hurin pull off the biggest upset of the year!
Stay tuned and vote!
Voting in this round will remain open until April 6th at 10pm ET. And oh yes, you can count us keeping a close eye on any potential cheaters out there!
No April Fools here folks! We’ve reached the Elite Eight in our 2015 Middle-earth March Madness! This round will determine who will represent each division!
Because today is April 1st, and there are a slew of April Fool’s jokes out there, we’re going to just get right too it! Can (4) Bilbo take out the tournament Cinderella, (11) Thranduil? Can (14) Elrond really take out (5) Gandalf?
*Please Note: This was one of TheOneRing.net’s annual April Fools Jokes – We are not going anywhere…at least we don’t think we are!* KENOSHA, WISCONSIN — An official press release is scheduled for tomorrow, but we, the TORn founders and staff, want to notify all those who have supported us for the past 15 years that TheOneRing.net is shutting down.
The final decision was communicated in an all-staff conference call over the weekend, but it has been discussed for months, speculated about for years, and we’ve cracked jokes about it from podiums at conventions (that nobody took seriously at the time), but now the long-dreaded hour is finally upon us.
The four TORn Founders (Erica Challis, Chris Pirrotta, Mike Regina and William Thomas) reached a tentative decision last week, discussed it with Senior Staff (identities top secret), then included world-wide staff, active and inactive, on the weekend conference call.
“We have a real sense of accomplishment that the purpose of the website has been fulfilled,” said Regina on the call. “Erica and I were interested in “some guy” in New Zealand adapting “The Lord of the Rings” into movies, and when Chris and Bill found us it really elevated the effort. The next thing you know it became far more than the hobby we envisioned.”
“It’s the perfect time to go out on a high note, fresh off the recent success of the Hobbit movies and The One Last Party,” said Challis. “It is still our collective baby, but the four of us just feel content that it has run its course. We don’t want to be like a “Transformers” sequel.”
Pirrotta agreed with her, pointing out how much of a commitment 15 years is: “I was in college when this started with time to sit in a computer lab. All of us have jobs and kids and responsibilities now. We stayed true to our vision, didn’t sell the website for millions when offered, and we can all feel good about that.”
Thomas offered more practical reasons: “We made a commitment to not make a profit and to give the money away to charity if we did. We accomplished that and I’m proud that we kept the site pure. Plus, Star Wars is back, so we can all follow our true love again. Remember, TORn was just an ode to The Force dot net anyway.”
Not all staff agreed with the decision and there was a period of open discussion about different ways the site might change hands. While we will not tell the media or general public, we can share with true fans, there were audible sobs during the conference call. (more…)
We are down to the Sweet Sixteen as the chase to crown the 2015 Middle-earth March Madness champion continues!
Look for special analysis of the match-ups in this round coming soon!
But what about you? Have any strong opinions about this round? Send us a report and it just may make it to the homepage of TheOneRing.net! Email firstname.lastname@example.org with your display name and a small bio, and article.
Yesterday, March 25, was officially Tolkien Reading Day. Celebrated annually by the Tolkien Society since 2003, Reading Day is exactly what it sounds like: a day “to encourage fans to celebrate and promote the life and works of J.R.R. Tolkien by reading favourite passages.” March 25th was chosen to commemorate the day in Middle-earth history of the destruction of the One Ring and the downfall of Sauron, but events are often held throughout the week surrounding the official date.
The theme for this year’s Reading Day is Friendship, chosen not only to commemorate how Frodo and Sam’s friendship triumphed in Mordor, but also to “celebrate the deep friendships that Tolkien developed in his own life and in his work.” By extension, a shared love of Tolkien’s work has inspired countless friendships, traversing continents and oceans. So share your love of Tolkien by joining a Reading Day event, or simply sharing your favorite passage with a friend!
Round 1 is in the history books, as Middle-earth March Madness continues to capture the attention of Tolkien fans worldwide! In our first round, we had over 190,000 total votes cast, with the most contentious match-ups recieving nearly 10,000 votes! Voting for Round 2 starts now! (Vote below).
Round 1 didn’t have many close match-ups, but there were definitely a few surprises.
The most contraversial seems to be (11) Thranduil taking down (6) Thorin Oakenshield in The Hobbit division. As the 2014 Middle-earth March Madness champion, Thranduil seems to have a dedicated and loyal following that should help him through his next match-up with (3) Beorn. (Or will fan backlash against those Thranduites push Beorn through?!)
In The Lord of the RIngs division, (8) Arwen was able to take down The Dark Lord himself, (9) Sauron. Will she make it past (1) Galadriel to possible match-up against (4) Aragorn?!
In The Others division, (2) Father Christmas was knocked off by (15) Legolas of Gondolin, obviously taking advantage of the name recognition of another famous Elf.
There are a lot of intriguing match-ups in round 2, which I’m sure some TORn staffer will highlight in an article this week. Maybe you want to highlight your favorite match-ups in this round? Submit an article to email@example.com with your display name and a small bio, and we’ll see if we can post it!
The 2015 edition of Middle-earth Madness officially starts today! We’ve split our field of 64 characters and objects into four divisions: The Silmarillion,The Hobbit,The Lord of the Rings and The Others.
This is a brand new format for the competition this year – implemented to encourage interesting match-ups, intriquging final four and ultimately education on the breadth of works from our favorite author, J.R.R. Tolkien.
A note on how the bracket combatants were determined. TheOneRing.net created a document containing all combatants, sub divided into divisions. We asked staff to cast sixteen votes per division, with the votes having a weight of 1-4. Each staffer cast four 4 votes, four 3 votes, four 2 votes and four 1 votes in each division. We then totalled all the votes from each division to determine their rank, and ultimately placed those into our bracket for seeding.
As you can imagine, our staff is diverse and the results were very interesting! What was very exciting when creating the bracket was the realization that we have some amazing and story related match-ups in this first round.
Voting in Round 1 will remain open until March 21st at 10pm ET. At that point, we’ll calculate the winners and post the next round on March 22nd. Follow after the break for a complete bracket image (download it), and to vote on all of our Round 1 match-ups! [Round 1 Bracket] (more…)
Yes folks, Middle-earth March Madness is back for 2015! If you are new to TheOneRing.net, Middle-earth March Madness is our adaptation on the popular NCAA Basketball tournament that takes place every March/April in the United State. It is our chance to have some fun matching up middle-earth power players against each other. Past winners include Samwise Gamgee,Gandalf, Thranduil.
Based on feedback from our past years, we are switching things up a bit to include the entirety of J.R.R. Tolkien’s works. So in reality, this could be called J.R.R. Tolkien March Madness!
This year, our four divisions will be representative of a book (or series of books):
The Lord of the Rings
Other Works (Lost Tales, Father Christmas, Children of Hurin, etc)
This allows each division to crown a champion for each book, and then they all face off against each other in the final four!
Our staff are sorting out the field of 64 combatants now, and we’ll be posting the first bracket and polls very soon. Stay tuned to the front-page of TORn for the announcement to start voting, and follow along on Twitter and FB with #middleearthmarchmadness @theoneringnet
Ralph Bakshi will appear in person at a film retrospective of some of his most iconic animated films, presented by the American Cinematheque in conjunction with the USC School of Cinematic Arts. The films will screen at the Aero Theater in Santa Monica on the last weekend of March. You can catch a double feature of “Heavy Traffic” and “American Pop” on Friday, March 27 starting at 7:30pm. There will be a discussion with director Ralph Bakshi between these two films and a clip will be shown from his new film “Last Days of Coney Island”. On the following Saturday, March 28, there will be a double feature of “The Lord of the Rings” and “Wizards”, starting at 7:30pm, again with a discussion with director Ralph Bakshi between the two films.
If you have never seen this version of LOTR, or at least never seen it on the big screen, you must try and catch this screening. The rotoscoping is eye-catching, to say the least, and brings a level of veracity to the more serious themes of this story, something that was not common with animation of it’s time. Bakshi Productions will be selling art in the lobby starting at 6:30pm each night, so get there early.
Staffers from TheOneRing.net will running about the theater as well, so do make sure to say hello if you see us. And what can only be called a cosmic coincidence, Tolkien Forever, the Los Angeles based smial of the Tolkien Society will be hosting Tolkien Reading Day earlier in the day on Saturday, March 28 in Downtown Los Angeles. You can find out more details about that on Facebook event page. Why not make it a true Tolkien daily double with some reading, some viewing and some Fellowship.
The Aero theater is located at 1328 Montana Avenue, Santa Monica, CA 90403, and you can buy tickets at the box office or in advance on Fandango. All the information you need can be found on the American Cinematheque Bakshi Tribute calendar.
The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies has snared four nominations at the 2015 edition of The Empire Awards. Voting is open to the public now, and the winners will be announced on Sunday March 29 in London.
The awards The Hobbit has been nominated for are: (more…)
Now that the movies are over, many fans of J.R.R. Tolkien have asked the staff of TheOneRing.net “What happens next?” The first and most important answer is – nothing is ending – we aren’t going anywhere! TheOneRing.net will continue to be the Internet’s premier home for J.R.R. Tolkien related news and information, as well as providing regular updates on the comings and goings of the cast and crew of all the films.
The forums, the chat-rooms, the headlines, the Facebook page, the Twitter feed, the book discussions, TORn Tuesdays, Happy Hobbit, and everything else, will all still be there for your enjoyment, and will continue to produce new material. There is so much to look forward to! Examples: The video releases of the third Hobbit film and hopefully boxed sets after that. The continued support of Tolkien in local communities as groups of people hold local events to which all are welcome – picnics, potlucks, readings, costume parties and so much more. The celebration of the creative side of things – where people produce art and writing that is inspired by Tolkien’s vision.
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.