As part of our continuing coverage of Hobbit Week 2012, we’ve got coverage from the New York City premiere of ’The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey!’ Ringer Ashlee took to the red carpet and sends in this report:
This past week, I had the incredible honor of being asked by TORn to film at this exciting event! Interviewing Peter Jackson, Philippa Boyens, Elijah Wood, Martin Freeman, Andy Serkis, Richard Armitage and almost all of the dwarves made it a thrilling experience I will never forget. I hope that you enjoy this video with words from all of our favorite hobbity friends!
Editor Note: Arathorn was an original staffer of TheOneRing.net back in the early days of the site. His involvement in the site has waned in recent years due to professional and familial responsiblities. His perspective on ‘The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey’ is unique as he has remained completely unspoiled and out-of-the-loop for nearly 10 years. Spoilers Ahead!
So, the question you probably want to hear answered is how The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey compares with LoTR. From my perspective, it’s pretty favourable – it worked much better for me than RoTK and FoTR, and probably slightly better than TTT. For context however, this is coming from someone who seriously undermined their enjoyment of LoTR by spoiling themselves rotten – whereas I’ve deliberately kept myself unspoilt for The Hobbit.
The pacing of The Hobbit: AUJ is gentler and more consistent than LoTR – the storytelling unfolds at a much more metered and less rushed pace. At no point did I feel bored – it felt like a leisurely but appropriate telling of the story. Also, where story padding is added, it generally feels that it’s actually dramatically required in order to provide additional context for the ‘real’ story, rather than a jarring and illadvised substitution from the books. For instance, the presence of Radagast is a much-needed and legitimate extension to portray the rise of evil in Mirkwood and Dol Guldur which would otherwise have to be shown as a slightly forced flashback.
For most folks, this is it: this is the week when we finally get to go back to Middle-earth, and experience Peter Jackson’s first Hobbit movie, The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey. Some of us, however, have had the great good fortune of seeing the film already, at press events around the globe. I was one such lucky viewer – and I present here my more-or-less spoiler-free review of what I saw.
Walking through the morning commuting crowds, heading to the cinema, it was slightly bewildering to think that I was finally going to see this movie. It’s been YEARS – hoping since The Return of the King that we would get to go ‘back again’; handing out ‘Make the Hobbit Happen!’ buttons at conventions; watching the ‘snakes and ladders’ game of waiting for that greenlight; eagerly taking in every moment of Peter Jackson’s production diaries… And now, at last, here it is. Would the anticipation prove too much? Would I be disappointed?
As the opening credits came up, I knew immediately that the answer, whatever was in store, would be NO. I was revisiting old friends – and what a great pleasure it was. I wanted to cry, as Frodo does in The Fellowship of the Ring, ‘It’s wonderful to see you Gandalf!’ What a treat to be back in the Shire, and to delight again in its green beauty. What fun to explore Bag End some more, and to see Ian Holm and Elijah Wood back where they belong – in furry feet!
Continuing our series of reviews of The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, TORn staffer Arwen chimes in with this SPOILER-HEAVY review of the action. I suggest that if you don’t want to know about how the story plays out, what the key plot points are, and what happens at the end of the movie, then this review is probably not for you! On the other hand, if you’re not afraid of reading all those things, dive on in! (more…)
How did Peter Jackson turn one small book into another massive film trilogy? Simple: all it took was some imagination and a bit of help from the author of The Hobbit himself.
The director has taken heat for turning what was intended to be a two-part prequel to his Lord of the Rings series into a three-part saga, especially given that the first Hobbit film clocks in at nearly three hours. Unlike the LOTR books, The Hobbit is a thin volume written for children, leading some to accuse him of stretching out narrative and milking the franchise. Instead, Jackson contends that the brevity of the book actually helped make it possible.
“The book is written in a very brisk pace, so pretty major events in the story are covered in only two or three pages,” Jackson told reporters on Wednesday. “So once you start to develop the scenes and plus you wanted to do a little bit more character development, plus the fact that we could also adapt the appendices of Return of the King, which is 100-odd pages of material that sort of takes place around the time of The Hobbit, so we wanted to expand the story of The Hobbit a little bit more, as did Tolkien himself. So all those factors combined gave us the material to do it.”
The appendices, which were tacked onto the final book of the Lord of the Rings series, fill in many blanks that were left in The Hobbit, which co-screenwriter Philippa Boyens pointed out.
“If we hadn’t done The Lord of the Rings, we wouldn’t have had done this. But we did,” she said. “We know where Gandalf was. So as soon as we knew we were going to that part of the tale, what happens in those years, because we knows what happens because Tolkien kept writing, you start to draw in and make a mythology.”
Series newcomer Richard Armitage, who plays the lead dwarf Thorin, chalked it up to the entire saga’s deep subtext.
For those of you who couldn’t catch The Colbert Report’s Hobbit Week, TheOneRing.net has assembled links to clips from the shows. Steven Colbert, a self-professed Tolkien uber-geek, dedicated this past week to interviewing cast members from the upcoming Hobbit movie. Interviews included Martin Freeman, Andy Serkis, Sir Ian McKellen, Elijah Wood, and director Peter Jackson himself. Follow the links below to see all five spots, but beware that it’s been reported there may be a spoiler or two!
Courtesy of Warner Bros Belgium, here is an amazing 13-minute look into The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey. It features behind-the-scenes footage, interviews with Philippa Boyens, Peter Jackson, Martin Freeman, Richard Armitage and many, many other key cast and crew members where they discuss the inspiration for, and direction of, the story the first film reveals. Plus there’s plenty of new, previously unseen (at least by me!) sneak previews of what you’ll see on the big screen! So I guess I’ll add: spoilers! (more…)
TV spot no. 10 has now officially been made available on Warner Bros. facebook page. For those of you (like me) who may have lost track of which spot number 10 is, exactly, it has a bit of new footage of the Riddles in the Dark scene between Bilbo and Gollum in the middle, and new footage of Galadriel and Gandalf towards the end. The total length of this spot is 34 seconds. Enjoy!
Six new clips have surfaced from The Hobbit all at once. These aren’t TV spots, and they’re not teasers. They’re full-on sequences of action and dialogue lasting for as much as a minute and a half. It’s so revealing that your head will spin. See as much as six minutes from The Hobbit right now. Warning: some heavy spoilers. We’re not kidding here. (more…)
TheOneRing.net staffer Garfeimao and long-time TORn friend Nancy Steinman were able to secure tickets to the World Premiere of The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey. Here are Garfeimao’s largely spoiler-free thoughts on what she saw.(more…)
Ian McKellen chats with TODAY’s Matt Lauer about reprising his role as Gandalf the Wizard in the new film The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, and working with the special effects required to create Middle Earth. He says in it “he has five more weeks (of shooting) to do next year” and that working on the green screen can be “a bit unnerving”. (more…)
Sir Ian McKellen, whose aeonian wizard, Gandalf, in the Tolkien movies has made him globally famous—The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey will be released this month—met me for lunch at Lucques, the award-winning restaurant in West Hollywood, Los Angeles.
It so happens that his contemporary Sir Michael Gambon (the only other actor in theater who can stand with McKellen on equal terms with Sir Laurence Olivier) also plays a famous wizard, in Harry Potter. “I often get mistaken for Dumbledore,” McKellen mentioned amusingly. “One wizard is very much like another.” (more…)
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