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Archive for the ‘LotR Movies’ Category

Middle-earth March Madness 2018 is here!

Welcome all, to the annual showdown in the realms of Eriador and beyond! Yes, it’s that time of year when hobbit must fight wizard, dwarf must battle elf, and man must face … erm … well, maybe himself.

Because this year we’ve thrown something new into the mix for March Madness. We thought it would be interesting to see if Sherlock could outwit the most cunning of dragons; or if Rudy has more heart than Samwise. What would fastidious Oscar Wilde make of the slovenly Master of Lake-town? Can Dwalin out-wrestle Dougal Mackenzie?

That’s right – our brackets contain actors in both their Tolkien roles, and a role they play in another film or TV show. So Luke Evans appears both as Bard and Gaston; and Billy Boyd is there both as Pippin and Barret Bonden (from ‘Master and Commander: The Far Side of the World’). This means that some battles will be between two characters from Middle-earth, some between two ‘outside’ characters, and some will be a mix; and yes, actors could find themselves facing an alter ego.

Are we crazy? Is there absolutely no way that the ape Caesar would stand a chance against Gollum? Is Magneto clearly no match for Gandalf? That’s for YOU to decide! Voting starts today – and the madness will run until April 5th. Here is the schedule for rounds:

  • Round 1 – March 19th – March 22nd 10:00pm ET
  • Round 2 – March 23rd – March 25th 10:00pm ET
  • Round 3 – March 26th – March 28th 10:00pm ET
  • Round 4 – March 31st 10:00pm ET
  • Final Four – April 1 – April 3rd 10:00pm ET
  • The Final – April 4 – April 5th 10:00pm ET

The brackets are divided as follows:

  • Division I – The Lord of the Rings Fellowship, and counterpart roles
  • Division II – The Lord of the Rings outside the Fellowship, and counterpart roles
  • Division III – The Hobbit Company (wizards, dwarves, and hobbit), and counterpart roles
  • Division IV – The Hobbit Lake-town and villains, and counterpart roles

Voting is simple – just click on your choice in each dual, below. You can only vote once – but feel free to share, and rally people to your cause! Speculate on the message boards, and head on over to Facebook to take part in some ‘exit polls’, and see who is predicted to win.

It’s all in fun – how you choose your choice of winners is entirely up to you. But if you’re keen to see someone in particular go all the way to final victory, start campaigning now!

Let the games begin!

Voting in Round 1 will remain open until March 22nd at 10pm ET. At that point, we’ll calculate the winners and post the next round on March 23rd. 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]


Posted in Aidan Turner, Andy Serkis, Benedict Cumberbatch, Bernard Hill, Billy Boyd, Cate Blanchett, Christopher Lee, David Wenham, Dominic Monaghan, Elijah Wood, Evangeline Lilly, Fans, Graham McTavish, Hobbit Movie, Hugo Weaving, Hugo Weaving, Ian Holm, Ian McKellen, John Bell, John Noble, John Rhys-Davies, Karl Urban, Lee Pace, Lord of the Rings, LotR Movies, Luke Evans, Manu Bennett, Martin Freeman, Miranda Otto, Miscellaneous, Orlando Bloom, Richard Armitage, Sean Astin, Sean Bean, Stephen Fry, The Hobbit, Announcements, Community, Tolkien, Viggo Mortensen

Collecting The Precious – The Poppies 2017 Results

Good news is never late; it arrives precisely when it means to! As we mentioned a little while back, our friends at Weta Workshop were nominated for several categories in Michael Crawford’s The Poppies yearly collectibles award show. Not only were some Middle-earth themed items nominated, but they came home with the hardware in both The People’s Picks as well as The Judge’s Picks. The Mouth of Sauron on Steed finished second place in best statue for The People’s Picks, as well as finishing third in the same category for the The Judge’s picks. Weta also did well in some other categories, with the Frodo Baggins Mini Epic finishing second in Best Designer Vinyl, while the 1:30 Dol Guldur set finished first in best misc collectibles. Congratulations to our friends at Weta Workshop!

Posted in Collectibles, Collectibles, Hobbit Movie, Lord of the Rings, LotR Movies, Merchandise, Movie Fellowship of the Ring, Movie Return of the King, Shop, The Hobbit, The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies, Weta Collectibles, WETA Workshop

Collecting The Precious – Weta Workshop’s Gandalf on Gwaihir Mini-Statue

This week our friends at Weta Workshop released a fantastic looking new statue from their awesome mini-statue line. This time fans can add Gandalf the Grey on Gwaihir as he escapes being trapped by former friend Saruman the White. This beautiful statue does a very good job of capturing the tiniest of details between Gandalf and Gwaihir. Fans can add this piece right now to their collection for only $125, and with it being in-stock there will be little to no wait time.

Posted in Collectibles, Collectibles, Ian McKellen, Lord of the Rings, LotR Movies, Merchandise, Movie Fellowship of the Ring, Shop, Weta Collectibles, WETA Workshop

Collecting The Precious – Weta Workshop’s Eomer on Firefoot Pre-Order

Our friends at Weta Workshop have helped show us why once again being patient can pay off in a very big way. After 15 years of waiting and always being at the top of anything we want to see, this statue made the list, and Eomer on Firefoot has come to be. This amazing statue captures Eomer as he and the Riders of Rohan help save Rohan from the Uruk-hai army sent by Saruman to destroy the people of Rohan.

Eomer is limited to only 750 pieces in the world so he won’t be around long, especially with Weta’s amazing payment system. Go order yours today and add the first of the horse people to be turned into a 1:6 rider statue.

Posted in Collectibles, Collectibles, Karl Urban, Lord of the Rings, LotR Movies, Merchandise, Movie Return of the King, Movie The Two Towers, Shop, Weta Collectibles, WETA Workshop

Ian McKellen’s King Lear to play in London’s West End

McKellen in an earlier RSC production of Lear

Ian McKellen has called it his ‘last big Shakespeare part’ – and now you have another chance to see it! Last year’s high acclaimed Chichester Festival Theatre production of King Lear will play at London’s Duke of York’s theatre, (which happens to be the theatre where McKellen made his West End debut, 54 years ago), from 11th July this summer.

You can read more about Jonathan Munby’s production here. Sir Ian tweeted this morning about the 100 show run. Tickets will go on sale on Monday 12th February.

Posted in Events, Hobbit Cast News, Hobbit Movie, Ian McKellen, Lord of the Rings, LotR Cast News, LotR Movies, Stage Productions, The Hobbit

Collecting The Precious – The Poppies 2017 The People’s Picks

For the last few years I’ve had the honor of being one of the judges for Michael Crawford’s The Poppies. Michael is one of the top reviewers of collectables out there. Every year he has an award contest for the best collectibles available in a variety of scales, price points, makers, etc. This year, Middle-earth is well represented by our friends at Weta Workshop and Asmus Toys. Weta Workshop has been nominated in categories such as Best Company, Best Overall Line, Best Statue, Best Vinyl, Best Paint Apps, and Best Miscellaneous. In addition, Asmus Toys received a nomination in the category of best male 1:6 figure. Be sure to vote for these fantastic Middle-earth themed collectibles and let the collecting world know just how much we love these items!

Posted in Collectibles, Collectibles, Contests, Hobbit Movie, Lord of the Rings, LotR Movies, Merchandise, Shop, The Hobbit, Weta Collectibles, WETA Workshop

Collecting The Precious – Weta Workshop’s Haldir Statue Pre-Order

Tonight our friends at Weta Workshop launched a brand new statue for fans to order and add to our collections. Once again, this is one of those pieces we’ve been waiting for going back to when the films were in the theaters. Who is this character that always seems to be near the top of any most wanted list? The character is Haldir who finally joins the 1:6 statue line as we saw him during The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers. Haldir looks fantastic on the product page, and with an edition size of only 750 pieces he won’t last long. You can get him right now for $399, and for anyone who might need a payment plan Weta has one for this guy. Don’t wait too long for this one!

Posted in Collectibles, Collectibles, Craig Parker, Lord of the Rings, LotR Movies, Merchandise, Movie Fellowship of the Ring, Movie Return of the King, Movie The Two Towers, Shop, Weta Collectibles, WETA Workshop

Collecting The Precious – Vanderstelt Studio Bag End: Expect me when you see me Giclee

One of the best artist out there Jerry Vanderstelt is back with a beautiful new landscape print capturing Bag End in such a fantastic way. Not only that but you get Gandalf and Frodo about to have what may be a very important conversation in the quiet of Hobbiton. This superb print is available in both Giclee for $80 and canvas for $225, with other options available at checkout. The cherry on top of this print is that it is in stock, so there is no wait to getting it. Make sure to grab this print, as Jerry’s work is among the best you will find when it comes to anything Middle-earth.

Posted in Artwork, Collectibles, Hobbit Movie, Lord of the Rings, LotR Movies, Merchandise, Movie Fellowship of the Ring, Movie Return of the King, Movie The Two Towers, Posters Prints, Shop, The Hobbit, The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies, The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug

The Two Towers 15th Anniversary Redux — TORn’s TT Geeky Observations List

Welcome to TORn’s LotR: The Two Towers 15th Anniversary Redux of our TT Geeky Observations Lists.    Last December (2016), we celebrated the FotR 15th Anniversary Redux of our FotR Geeky Observations Lists.   This link will take you to that installment with the explanation of the madness that gives us “the lists!”

With the release of The Two Towers on December 18, 2002,’s Movie Discussion Board members continued the fun of gathering geeky observations for our TT list just as we did for FotR and RotK… and eventually for the 3 Hobbit movies; but we have about 11 more years to wait before they get properly reduxed 😉

As it happened with the FotR Geeky Observations List, the TT contributions began with the release of the trailers.  We members poured over every frame and every utterance driven by the excitement of anticipating the movie’s imminent release.  After we eventually got the extended DVD, we could really scrutinize every moment until the TT list grew to 468 items, with more to add!

Here are some examples of observations (lists do not include pictures):

While Sam and Frodo are sleeping and Gollum crawls down the mountain, their backpacks are on the wrong sides.  Frodo is sleeping next to Sam’s backpack and vice versa.



There is a stool to the left of Théoden’s throne that is brought around to his right and used first by Gríma when the Fellowship arrives and then by Gandalf.

Théodred is buried with his helmet placed at his feet, holding his sword and also holding Simbelmynë in his hands.   Théodred’s bier is made of shields lying across two long spears.


As with all of the geeky lists, one of the changes I made to the premise of the original list was to exclude any nit-picky or negative items. Considering everything Peter Jackson and the hundreds of people who made these films possible went through to create these three movies at one time… something never attempted before… I just didn’t think it was right. Those observations were for others to collect.

Because these lists are still active and growing all the time, feel free to share your own observations. Find me on the Boards where you can also access all of these links and more in the footer of my posts on The One Ring Forums Message Boards.

Posted in Creations, Fans, Hobbit Movie, Lord of the Rings, LotR Movies, Movie Fellowship of the Ring, Movie The Two Towers, The Hobbit, Announcements, Community, TORn's Geeky Observations Lists

Collecting The Precious – Weta Workshop’s Masters Collections: Gollum

At Comic-Con 2017, our friends at Weta Workshop unveiled one of the most stunning pieces I’ve ever seen. The piece is part of the new Masters Collection, and the character is one we all know quite well: Gollum. This superb piece is a 1:3 mixed media piece with real hair, glass, eyes, translucent skin, clear resin water, and an actual cloth loin cloth. Needless to say this is the best Gollum piece that’s been done. Gollum is limited to only 589 pieces worldwide and comes with a price tag of $1799. Fans that are interested can also use Weta’s handy flex pay system that will help you break this down so you can add this amazing statue into your collections.

Posted in Andy Serkis, Collectibles, Collectibles, ComicCon, Conventions, Events, Lord of the Rings, LotR Movies, Merchandise, Movie Fellowship of the Ring, Movie Return of the King, Movie The Two Towers, Shop, Weta Collectibles, WETA Workshop

Collecting The Precious – Weta Workshop’s Black Friday Extravaganza

As we approach that season of giving you may be looking for a great item for the Middle-earth fan in your life. Our friends at Weta Workshop have some amazing deals for you that should check any box on any fan’s list. We have deals ranging from 2 for $199 1:6 statues to those fantastic Mini-Epics for only $25. Those are just the tip of the ice berg when it comes to what you will find on Weta Workshop’s Black Friday Page. They also have deals for other properties they’ve worked on if you have a fan that likes something besides just Middle-earth items. Don’t wait too long though as these deals will end on November 27th at 11:59 pm PST.

Posted in Collectibles, Collectibles, Hobbit Movie, Lord of the Rings, LotR Movies, Merchandise, Movie Fellowship of the Ring, Movie Return of the King, Movie The Two Towers, Shop, The Hobbit, The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies, The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug, Weta Collectibles, WETA Workshop

In historic move, Christopher Tolkien resigns as director of Tolkien Estate

It turns out a “Lord of the Rings” TV series isn’t the biggest Tolkien news of the week or the month or the year.

Christopher Tolkien, son and literary heir of J.R.R. Tolkien, resigned from the Tolkien Estate. And his departure changes everything.

Christopher is 93 and just this year edited and published one of his father’s works “Beren and Luthien,” which as even casual Tolkienites know, refers to his parents with the names of those characters adorning their tombstones.

In the preface of the book he writes, “this is (preemptively) my last book in the long series of editions of my father’s writings.” It seems he was planning to retire already. Personally, learning the greatest Tolkien scholar, and a man who has honored his father in an exemplary way, has left the care of his father’s legacy to others feels like reading the end of LOTR where Galadriel, Elrond and the other great elves leave Middle-earth. There is a keen sadness, but admiration and beauty as well.

But even if you aren’t sentimental, he deserves any Tolkien fan’s deep respect. But it bears repeating, this changes everything.

The news reached me by friend Michael Martinez via Twitter on his blog. Martinez has an exceptional mind for Tolkien.

He understood perfectly that Christopher R. Tolkien’s departure signals the end of an era.

“With Christopher’s departure as an officer of the Tolkien Estate (which was incorporated in 2011), the long-awaited “rights frenzy” for Tolkien properties may soon begin,” he wrote.

Yes, and it seemingly has already happened. This is a definite piece of the puzzle of the recent news of the Amazon Video deal. I had heard through rock solid, but not reportable sources several years ago that other members of the estate were much more willing to negotiate J.R.R. Tolkien’s properties while Christopher was far more interested in preserving legacy than money.

The settlement between Warner Bros. and the Tolkien Estate settled an $80 million lawsuit July 3. Part of the statement the studio released at the time was unusually upbeat for an entity that just paid out big money:

“The parties are pleased that they have amicably resolved this matter and look forward to working together in the future.”

The future mentioned in that statement is this week and beyond, and it was obviously in the works then. According to a U.K. government website, Christopher resigned on Aug. 31. One would expect formal resignations of this nature take time to manage legally, so it also was in the works for some time I suspect. What I wouldn’t give to have been in the room for that passing of the torch.

So in quick fashion, after the seismic change, the estate has sold the television rights for book “The Lord of the Rings.” Warners paid the court dispute so there would be a relationship moving forward and Amazon’s Jeff Bezos rewarded both entities handsomely.

Another important thing to note here, and another piece of the puzzle, is that the television rights to “The Hobbit” and “Lord of the Rings” were NOT sold when J.R.R. Tolkien sold the movie rights in 1969. Those rights were for motion pictures. TORn staffer and author Kristin Thompson informed our staff about this. She has first-hand documentation and as author of “The Frodo Franchise,” knows this stuff as well as anybody. And obviously you can and should buy her book on I believe another TORn news article is expected on just this point.

This explains why the estate was so involved in the Amazon deal; they were selling something. It also explains why Middle-earth Enterprises was absent from the latest news. (Correction: This originally said Tolkien Enterprises, a name previously used that is not correct. The story has been updated.)

But the bigger ramifications of all this are far greater than a multi-season Amazon series. The new leadership of the estate seem much more willing to deal Tolkien properties than Christopher was and this confirms my well placed sources.

This opens up Tolkien and Middle-earth as possible franchises in the same way that Harry Potter’s world is a place you can visit at Universal Studios or that Disney will soon have a Star Wars area. There are few properties in the world that can be talked about in the same way as Middle-earth. Warner Bros. see the value and so does Amazon.

That doesn’t mean the Tolkien Estate will move toward making the rights to “Beren And Luthien” available but it does mean my wish to produce “The Silmarillion” as HBO series is slightly less impossible than it was before. That is what has changed really. Things once impossible are now possible.

The estate may elect to only allow more content based solely on “The Hobbit” and “The Lord of the Rings.” Or they may carefully cultivate the entire library.

Because of the depth of J.R.R. Tolkien’s legendarium, there is a virtually endless fountain of material. As Martinez points out in his blog, what will be produced is essentially fan fiction. As Disney has expanded the Galaxy far-far away, and HBO is planning its growth of George R.R. Martin’s Westeros world, so too could Amazon and Warner Bros expand Middle-earth.

Much of that possibility rests with the estate but just Appendix A in “The Lord of the Rings” offers a wealth of content. The imagination soars with possibilities.

This will no doubt anger many fans and delight many others, as the Amazon deal already has. Some don’t want to see the compromise of the author’s vision. Funny enough, this also seems to have a whole new batch of fans upset because they don’t want Amazon’s product to compromise Peter Jackson’s vision of Tolkien’s vision.

The officers of the Tolkien Estate still count among their numbers Tolkien’s youngest child Priscilla Tolkien and other grandchildren in the family.

This is over-long already but a final word on Christopher Tolkien’s departure. Here is a man who is a treasure, and who carries in his heart and mind the voice and essence of his father. The significance of his departure cannot be over stated.

I close with another poignant passage he wrote about his father in the preface of his final contribution to the Tolkien legacy, “Beren and Luthien.”

“In a letter to me on the subject of my mother, written in the year after her death, which was also the year before his own, he wrote of his overwhelming sense of bereavement, and of his wish to have Luthien inscribed beneath her name on the grave. He returned in that letter … to the origin of the tale of Beren and Luthien in a small woodland glade filled with hemlock flowers near Roos in Yorkshire, where she danced; and he said: ‘But the story has gone crooked, and I am left, and I cannot plead before the inexorable Mandos.’

Thank you Christopher Tolkien. We are going to miss you and your strength and determination to contribute to and preserve the legacy of your father.

Posted in Amazon TV series, Christopher Tolkien, Hobbit Movie, J.R.R. Tolkien, Lord of the Rings, LotR Movies, Studios, The Hobbit, Tolkien, Warner Bros.