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Archive for the ‘The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey’ Category

How would have Peter Jackson’s The Hobbit looked as a duology?

The Hobbit Bag End Door Originally, Peter Jackson intended his adaptation of The Hobbit to be a two-film effort — a duology.

We’ll never know for certain how it would have turned out, but in this feature TORn writer Captain Salt brings together the known facts to give us some idea of just how it might have shaped up.

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Posted in Adam Brown, Aidan Turner, Andy Serkis, Barry Humphries, Benedict Cumberbatch, Billy Connolly, Casting Rumors, Cate Blanchett, Conan Stevens, Dean O'Gorman, Director news, Elijah Wood, Evangeline Lilly, Graham McTavish, Green Books, Guillermo Del Toro, Headlines, Hobbit Book, Hobbit Movie, Hobbit Movie Rumors, Hugo Weaving, Ian McKellen, James Nesbitt, Jed Brophy, John Bell, John Callen, John Rawls, Ken Stott, Lawrence Makoare, Lee Pace, Locations Sets, Luke Evans, Manu Bennett, Mark Hadlow, Martin Freeman, MGM, Mikael Persbrandt, Peter Hambleton, Peter Jackson, Richard Armitage, Rob Kazinsky, Ryan Gage, Saoirse Ronan, Stephen Fry, Stephen Hunter, Studios, Sylvester McCoy, The Hobbit, The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug, The Hobbit: There and Back Again, Warner Bros., William Kircher

Vote now in Round Three of Middle-earth March Madness 2014 edition!

middleearthmarchmadness14-verticalThe second round of the 2014 edition of Middle-earth March Madness mostly saw sweeping victories for those who moved through into the third round — except in one extremely close-fought vote.

Voting for Round Three is now open below. Here are the match-ups!

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Posted in Characters, Events, Fans, Fellowship of the Ring, Hobbit Book, Hobbit Movie, Lord of the Rings, LotR Books, LotR Movies, Movie Fellowship of the Ring, Movie Return of the King, Movie The Two Towers, Other Events, Other Tolkien books, Return of the King, Silmarillion, The Hobbit, The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug, The Hobbit: There and Back Again, The Two Towers, Uncategorized

Collecting The Precious – Weta Workshop’s Radagast the Brown Statue Review

IMG_8086One of the showstoppers at Comic-Con 2013 was a character I had been looking forward to seeing since the The Hobbit Trilogy was announced. Being pretty pleased with how this character was done left me looking forward to finally adding a statue of him to my collection. Thankfully that wish came true when I made my voyage to the Weta booth during Comic-Con last year. I was really blown away by the job done on the Radagast the Brown statue and just how spectacular a job was done to translate the onscreen character into a 1:6th scale statue.

PACKAGING

The overall graphic layout for Radagast’s box stays the same as we’ve seen with previous entries in the line. Per the format we’ve come to know, the front of the box gives you a great shot of Radagast, graphic work for the title of the movie, and of course the Weta logo. The sides of the box for Radagast also present a familiar format with different looks at the statue. While the other side of the box presents some of the various products you can get for The Hobbit line of collectibles. The back of the box contains a great story on Radagast as well as information regarding details of the character and statue. The Styrofoam on the inside is typical with what we’ve come used to getting with these statues.

SCULPTING

IMG_8241The task of sculpting Radagast the Brown was handed to the ultra talented Steven Saunders. He has once again shown why he is a master of his craft with the skills needed to bring the movie to life within your collection. The Istari would be proud to have Mr. Saunders sculpting them I believe.

I personally think the likeness to actor Sylvester McCoy with all the makeup he wore is pretty much spot on. You’re going to be hard pressed, I think, to deny that this isn’t an excellent reproduction of the character. This goes all the way down to his nose being just a little crooked. As we know Radagast‘s appearance is a total mess, which is wonderfully shown on this statue with his beard going every way possible.

One of the things I love the most about Radagast is the unique look he has with his hodgepodge of an outfit. It is one of my favorite things about him. His coat has some amazing details in it with little plants or flowers on the back of his coat, which just happens to be fraying at the ends of it from the constant wear and tear. His vest and undershirt appear to be the same type of material along with looking exactly the same. Both of these are also fraying/tearing at the end from him wearing them all the time, as is the case with Radagast’s entire outfit. One small detail I love on the vest is it being held closed by just one simple button, which has some nice details within those buttons. Radagast’s pants which now resemble capris from most likely being the only pants he wears as he roams Mirkwood. The one detail that I think I love the most about his outfit and did not notice until after seeing the movie is he wears two different shoes. This reminds me of a neighbor that used to live by me that always had on two different pairs of shoes. They’re totally different designs with one having fir at the top and leaves while the other is a plain black leather looking shoe. He also carries with him a worn out bag that appears to be made out of the same material as his coat.

IMG_8230Radagast lives a simple life style so he doesn’t really have weapons or jewelry that we’ve seen on other statues from this line. He does have his unqiue hat that like the rest of his outfit is made of cloth with the little cloth fiber details that make up the hat. Wizards really don’t need too many weapons, but one you can bet they will have is a staff. The staff has the little wood grain details put into it, which when painted help create a real wood looking staff. It also at the top of it has the crystal that he used to help save his little pal Sebastian when we first meet him in The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey.  Speaking of Sebastian he joins Radagast on this statue climbing the log that has fallen on the ground making up part of the base. This little addition may be the part I love the most as that moment when Radagast saves Sebastian made me think of how much I love my puppies. Those are not the only animals that help make up this statue with a cute little mouse and robin that is landing on Radagast’s outstretched hand.

I think Weta has done an excellent job with the poses on these statues allowing them to gives us a look inside these characters. As I mentioned in a previous review the Elves have both a power as well as a beautiful elegance. The pose for Radagast shows his care of nature and love of the animals that make up his world. As an animal lover myself it really is the cherry on top of this statue.

PAINT

IMG_8235The streak continues by Weta with how the factory paint came out on Radagast. The overall skin tone on Radagast I think is really well done, and very much looks like a healthy human should look. The one issue with my statue is the redness is a little on the strong side but overall doesn’t take away from the statue. The grey coloring of his beard does a great job highlighting the hair detail and matching what we saw on screen. When put into my collection cabinet his paint apps look great along with the rest of the collection.

As I mentioned earlier the outfit is really exceptional. I love the way they used the various shades of browns to help create the worn look of the clothes. It’s also great that the browns highlight the detail within the outfit and don’t hide the details that were sculpted into the outfit. His shoes have a great paint job with the one having some cool gold painted leaves on the shoes while the other does have the old worn leather look. The animals and parts of Mirkwood that make up the rest of the statue stays at the high level as Radagast himself when it comes to paint detail. They even did a nice job on my least favorite part of the character with the bird poop in the proper spots.

Overall

IMG_8205Radagast retails for $275, which puts him inline for the non-Dwarven characters. I really love this statue! I love the character and just how well done this statue is. Again, I think this is a statue you must see in person to appreciate how beautiful this statue really is. I was also lucky recently to get Mr. McCoy’s autograph here in Kansas City’s Comic-Con to add something to my Radagast statue.

SPECIFICATIONS

Radagast is limited to just 1000 pieces worldwide and is ready to order now from our friends at Weta. As we wind down The Hobbit Trilogy this is going to be a hard statue to get a hold of so don’t wait an let it pass you by.

Dimensions:

11.8″ x 9.1″ x 5.5″ (H x W x D)
30 cm x 23 cm x 14 cm

Weight:

5.1 lbs (2.3 kg)

PHOTOS

Posted in Collectibles, Collectibles, ComicCon, Conventions, Hobbit Movie, Merchandise, Shop, Sylvester McCoy, The Hobbit, The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug, Weta Collectibles, WETA Workshop

Vote Now – Round 2 of Middle-earth March Madness is upon us

Things are really heating up in the 2014 edition of Middle-earth March Madness with some competitors moving into the second round by the skin of their teeth. Voting for Round 2 is now open at the bottom of this post.

2014Bracket2

LONELY MOUNTAIN BRACKET

The perfect example is the very first match up in the Lonely Mountain bracket. Elrond squeaked past Smaug by just 1%, while his second round match up in Fingolfin made it past Bombur by just under a 3% differential. So what can we expect from a meeting of two great Elven Lords? Fingolfin became High-King of the Noldor once they arrived in Middle-earth and was a well renowned warrior before he fell to Morgoth. Elrond Half-elven is one of the great Elven Lords and by the time we get to the War of the Ring he holds one of the Elven rings of Power, Vilya, the most powerful of the three Rings. With two such regal Elves going toe to toe, this should be one match up to keep your eye on.

The Lonely Mountain bracket have a few other match ups worthy of taking note of. Treebeard beat Saruman, proving that the March of the Ents and subsequent taking of Isengard was no fluke. The eldest of the Ents will take on Gollum, just about the craftiest survivor in Middle-earth, this will be one unpredictable showdown. Aragorn defeated Melian, an ancestor of his wife Arwen while Bain fell to the Balrog of Moria, which face it, was not a fair fight. Aragorn wanted a chance to face the Balrog when the Fellowship was chased to the Bridge of Khazad-dum, but Gandalf stepped in stating that “this foe is beyond you”, now he gets a second chance to face this foe. The final match up in the bracket is that of Frodo Baggins, who defeated Manwe with a decent margin against Bard the Bowman, who handily dispatch Bill the Pony back to Bree. Will the grim holder of the Black Arrow prevail against the final Ringbearer? Only you can decide the fate of these contestants.

BAG END BRACKET

Most of the first round contests were handily won by those who move into the second round, with the closest match up being that of Radagast defeating Balin by just a 5% differential. But now the Brown Wizard will be facing Galadriel, who easily moved past Beren. What can Brown do against the Lady of the Golden Wood, you must decide. The most fascinating duel will be that of the Black Arrow against Anduril. The Flame of the West quickly dispatched the Spiders of Mirkwood while the Black Arrow made quick work of the Watcher in the Water, but these two mighty weapons head to head should be the most hotly contested match in the Bag End bracket. Thranduil didn’t even break a sweat in moving on past Tom, William and Bert, and his new foe, Gwaihir, easily flew past Barliman Butterbur. Can the Wind Lord outpace the King of the Mirkwood Realm?

Of the contests in the Bag End bracket, the most unpredictable is most likely Bilbo against Glorfindel. Bilbo made it past the Fell Beasts fairly easily, while Glorfindel had a harder time against Kili. Having slain a Balrog, and dying in the process only to be sent back to Middle-earth by the Valar probably aided that. Both Bilbo and Glorfindel were living in Imladris, with Bilbo being a special guest of Elrond and Glorfindel acting as Lord Elrond’s Lieutenant. Gandalf has called him “one of the mighty of the Firstborn, an Elf-lord of a house of Princes”. Thus it was that Elrond sent Glorfindel out to assist Frodo in finding his way into Rivendell because he was strong enough to face the Ringwraiths. And yet, Bilbo has faced Trolls, goblins, won the Ring of Power from Gollum, defeated giant spiders and faced a dragon and lived to tell the tale. This should be an battle of epic proportions, vote wisely.

EREBOR BRACKET

This bracket is full of darkness with three of the four contests having at least one Dark character. But none is more full of evil intent than Morgoth versus Ancalagon. While Morgoth easily slipped past the Arkenstone in round 1, Ancalagon reduced the Bunny Sled to ashes and now the Master will face his creation. Ancalagon the Black was bred by Morgoth and was considered the largest and mightiest of all the dragons in Middle-earth, and Morgoth began as Melkor, the most powerful of the Ainur before succumbing to darkness. His is a cautionary tale against pride, wrath, envy, lust for power and greed. Will the mightiest of all Fire-drakes be able to defeat the Dark Lord that preceded Sauron who was, in fact, Morgoth’s lieutenant?

After defeating Gothmog, Dain Ironfoot is set to take on The One Ring after it handily defeated Nenya. Can this Heir of Durin resist the lure of the Ring of Power? In the other contest with dark overtones is that of Beorn against the Witch-king of Angmar. Beorn handily survived Glamdring while the Witch-king crushed the Master of Laketown. Glorfindel is the one who made the prophecy that the Witch-king could not be killed by man, but Beorn is not of the Race of Men, should make for an interesting smackdown.

The final contest in the Erebor bracket is that of Thorin, King Under the Mountain, and Boromir, a Son of Gondor. Thorin dismissed Pippin quite easily, while Boromir sent the two Blue Wizards packing, but these two have so much in common that this is set to be a very unpredictable match up. Boromir, the greatest Captain of the Gondorian army during the War of the Ring becomes enthralled by the temptation of the Ring, and betrays Frodo before coming to his senses. He redeems himself with his sacrifice in order to save Merry and Pippin and becomes the last to use and hold the Horn of Gondor. Likewise, Thorin is a mighty warrior and hero among the Dwarves exiled from their home, but his desire to reclaim his kingdom, and the enthrallment with the treasure sees him succumbing to Dragon sickness. His is a last minute realization that there is more to life, and like Boromir, he is redeemed in the eyes of those he values. This is going to be an epic showdown of two of Tolkien’s most flawed heroes, and their fate is now in your hands.

MIRKWOOD BRACKET

This bracket is a little bit of a wildcard with some  much loved characters going head to head, most notable Gandalf versus Luthien. Gandalf simply trounced the Great Goblin, much as he did in Goblintown, while Luthien barely snuck past Gil-Galad. Can Gandalf, holder of Narya, one of the three Elven rings and wielder of the Flame of Arnoth move on past one of the most beloved of Elven Maidens? She is actually Half-Elven, with the other half being Maiar, and yet she fell in love with a mortal man, in turn inspiring countless tales and songs after she chose to become mortal in order to die alongside her husband Beren. Elves to this day still mourn the loss of Luthien, and a few Men as well, such as Aragorn. It was her choice to become mortal that allowed her descendant Arwen to make the same choice. This match up is sure to inspire great debate and will be more unpredictable than the rest in this bracket.

Glaurung defeated Shelob in a battle of monsters in order to face off against Faramir, who surpassed Varda in round 1. With the incorruptible Son of Gondor be able to survive squaring off against the first dragon of Middle-earth? Glaurung may be the first dragon, but he has no wings, where as Faramir will still have to defeat a fire breathing drake. The next contest has Sting, which easily outwitted the Talking Wallet taking on Legolas, who actually got past Sauron. The small, elvish blade of little consequence for the likes of Elves and Men earns a mighty reputation when put into the hands of a Baggins, but is it capable of defeating a princely Elven hunter? The final pairing is that of Samwise Gamgee against Tauriel. She easily handled Saruman’s Palantir, but Samwise the Brave made mince meat out of Azog. Where as Tauriel is the more skilled warrior, it is doubtful she can top Sam’s ability with a skillet and a brace of Coneys.

In the end, it is up to you to decide what befalls all these characters and artifacts of Middle-earth. Vote, discuss and share and lets see what surprises Round 2 has in store for us all.

Download the Bracket! [Round 2] [Round 1]



The Lonely Mountain – Round 2
March 21st – March 24th 2014


Bag End – Round 2
March 21st – March 24th 2014


Erebor – Round 2
March 21st – March 24th 2014


Mirkwood – Round 2
March 21st – March 24th 2014


Posted in Characters, Events, Fans, Fellowship of the Ring, Hobbit Book, Hobbit Movie, J.R.R. Tolkien, Lord of the Rings, LotR Books, LotR Movies, Movie Fellowship of the Ring, Movie Return of the King, Movie The Two Towers, Other Events, Other Tolkien books, Return of the King, Silmarillion, The Hobbit, The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug, The Hobbit: There and Back Again, The Two Towers, Tolkien

Collecting The Precious – Weta Workshop’s Azog the Defiler on Warg Review

IMG_8072It’s not very often that the statue of the year comes out so early in the year leaving all the rest to settle for the number two spot. But that is what has happened this year with the arrival last month of the Azog the Defiler on Warg by Weta Workshop. We got our first look at this beast of a statue during Comic-Con 2013. This was the jewel of the Weta booth last year with a steady stream of people drooling all over the glass at how amazing this looked..

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Posted in Collectibles, Collectibles, ComicCon, Conventions, Merchandise, Shop, The Hobbit, The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug, Weta Collectibles, WETA Workshop

Collecting The Precious – Weta Workshop’s The Front Gate of Erebor Environment Pre-Order

hobbitenvironmentereboralrg2The latest newsletter from our friends at Weta Workshop has been released, included in it is  their first environment piece from The Hobbit Trilogy. This amazing piece is one I have been looking forward to arriving, it captures the stunning detail of the Front Gate of Erebor. This fantastic piece has all the little details that we saw in the front gate with those two awesome Dwarven statues. You can pre-order this piece right now for a solid price of $199 with it arriving in your collection sometime between April and May.

Also in the latest newsletter is an item I believe Ringers who like to cosplay or fans of Legolas in general will love. You can add an exact replica of the vambrace that Legolas wears during The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug. Each vambrace is made of high quality leather and is ready to ship shortly after ordering. One vambrace comes with a price tag of $99 and will help you put a great finishing touch onto any Middle-earth themed costume.

Posted in Clothing, Clothing, Collectibles, Collectibles, Hobbit Movie, Merchandise, Shop, The Hobbit, The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug, Weta Collectibles, WETA Workshop

New trailer for The Hobbit Lego video game!

Lego Hobbit game trailer Here’s a funky new trailer for the Lego video game for The Hobbit, done in the style of Ocean’s Eleven. Pretty neat. It does seem to emphasise the teamwork element of the game, something that IGN’s reviewer of the just-released playable demo wrote about approvingly just the other day:

Already in this small section of Goblin Town, buddy-up was used in a handful of ways, and and considering Thorin, Fili, Kili, Oin, Gloin, Dwalin, Balin Bifur, Bofur, Bombur, Dori, Nori and Ori all have different ways of interacting with the environment and one another, I’m excited to see how else the mechanic will play out.

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Posted in Gaming, Headlines, Hobbit Movie, LEGO, Merchandise, The Hobbit, The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug, Video games

Four MTV Award nominations for The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug

#VoteBilbo Nominations for the 2014 MTV Awards have just been announced, and The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug is up for four of those golden popcorn buckets.

This year, The Hobbit has snared nominations for: (more…)

Posted in Evangeline Lilly, Events, Fans, Headlines, Hobbit Movie, Martin Freeman, Orlando Bloom, Other Events, The Hobbit, The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug

Collecting The Precious – Weta Workshop’s Fili Statue and Smaug’s Golden Coins

hobbitfilialrg2Last night our friends at Weta Workshop released several new items that fans can now add to their Middle-earth collections. (more…)

Posted in Collectibles, Collectibles, Hobbit Movie, Merchandise, Shop, The Hobbit, The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug, Weta Collectibles, WETA Workshop

Box office numbers show the Middle Kingdom loves Middle-earth

1743690_10152048295894821_2137093463_n The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug delivered Warner Bros. its largest-ever three-day box office takings in China as the film finally debuted there over the weekend.

Some media outlets speculate that the sudden popularity of The Hobbit in China is due to intense air pollution driving the populace indoors as the government advised people to limit outdoor activities. Others suggest that it’s because Chinese just really like dragons. (more…)

Posted in Hobbit Movie, Studios, The Hobbit, The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug, Warner Bros.

Collecting The Precious – Gentle Giant’s Kili the Dwarf Mini-Bust

 

KiliAs you may recall, we teamed up with Gentle Giant to pick the next Dwarf who would get turned into a bust for their The Hobbit Trilogy line. The winner of the poll was one of the ‘Hot Dwarves’: Kili the Dwarf. Kili is the archer of the company, but this piece gives us him holding his Dwarven sword, which is a nice change for fans with more than one collectible of this character. Kili comes in with a price tag of $75 for non PGM members and only $67.50 for those of us who are PGM members. You can expect Kili to arrive into your collection around the fourth quarter of this year.

Posted in Collectibles, Collectibles, Gentle Giant, Merchandise, Shop, The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug, The Hobbit: There and Back Again

‘The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey’ wins Annie Award

The-Hobbit-GollumThat mischievous little sneaker known as Gollum (or Smeagol, depending on his mood) has another notch in his belt (er, loincloth). Even 10+ years after making a splash in Hollywood, he just can’t stop picking up awards.

Yesterday, the 41st Annual Annie Awards were held. The Annies celebrate achievement in film and television animation. The award for ‘Character Animation in a Live Action Production’ was given to Jeff Capogreco, Jedrzej Wojtowicz, Kevin Estey, Alessandro Bonora and Gino Acevedo for their work on Gollum in The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey. (more…)

Posted in Andy Serkis, Crew News, Events, Headlines, Hobbit Movie, MGM, Miscellaneous, New Line Cinema, Production, The Hobbit, The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, Warner Bros., WETA Digital