Welcome to our weekly live webcast — known as TORn TUESDAY — a unique show format where you can come into the chat and participate live. We are now on the 4th part of our ongoing series of discussions on the History of the Dwarves who undertake the Quest of Erebor. Today we switch gears to discuss OIN and GLOIN (father of our Fellowship member Gimli) and learn about the great fate tying up these characters in the House of Durin’s Line! Bring your questions and join us LIVE for what will be a very illuminating discussion of dark Dwarven secrets! We have *JUST* confirmed that our actors playing these roles have been whisked away to the studios in Wellington, where Peter Jackson has commenced new shoots for The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug!
Join us for TORn TUESDAY every week at 5:00PM Pacific: brought to you by host Clifford “Quickbeam” Broadway and producer Justin “I Haven’t Read The Books Yet” Sewell — as we discuss the unique characteristics of each Dwarf. We shall learn how they fit into the larger history of Tolkien’s legends — and what Peter Jackson & WETA did to help us distinguish these rough and tumble travelers from each other (using more than just colored hoods). Our innovative live show includes worldwide fans who join us on the Live Event page with a built-in IRC chat (affectionately known as Barliman’s Chat room). Be part of the fun and mischief every week as we broadcast *live* from Meltdown Comics in the heart of Hollywood, U.S.A.!
NEXT WEEK: Bifur, Bofur….. and Bombur, for real this time!
Follow Cliff ‘Quickbeam’ Broadway on Twitter: @quickbeam2000
Peter Jackson talks to Graham McTavish while Martin Freeman, dressed as Bilbo Baggins, looks on.
There have been a smattering of reports about when filming (actually there is no film, it is all digital these days) resumes for this set of pick-ups on “The Hobbit.” TheOneRing.net can confirm (from the very best of sources) that work starts Monday, May 20 in Wellington. Everybody seems to know that a chunk of the work to be done is for the Battle of Five Armies but it seems likely there are other things to be done as well. Often, in the editing room, where all the shooting comes together and the movie transforms from a plan into a finished product, the director (Peter Jackson in this case) or perhaps one of the screen writers (Philippa Boyens or Fran Walsh) wants something extra to flesh out a scene or a character. No details of this have been provided for this film, but that is the way movie making works. Lots of actors have reported through social media that they are returning and we know this block of filming has always been in the plans. Estimates are that up to 10 weeks of work remain to be done with bits for both “The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug,” and “The Hobbit: There and Back Again.” It seems likely that most of the principal cast will return for the segment, although not all are specifically confirmed.
Benedict Cumberbatch in the Star Trek franchise.
Meanwhile some Hobbit actors have big movies in theaters now. Benedict Cumberbatch joins the space crew in “Star Trek: Into Darkness,” this weekend while Luke Evans hops into the Fast and Furious franchise. Both are expected to be significant money makers for Hollywood and will raise the profile of both actors before they his screens in Middle-earth in December. Cumberbatch voices the highly anticipated dragon Smaug while Evans plays the enigmatic Bard The Bowman. Casting calls for those living and legally working in New Zealand have already gone out and actors, such as Adam Brown (see below) on our own weekly TORn Tuesday show talked about his return to New Zealand. It is not believed that Andy Serkis, second unit director, will not return to set which means shooting will likely be a one-unit production. More details as and when they become available.
Posted in Adam Brown, Benedict Cumberbatch, Characters, Director news, Fran Walsh, Graham McTavish, Hobbit Cast News, Hobbit Movie, Luke Evans, Martin Freeman, Peter Jackson, Philippa Boyens, The Hobbit
What a fun movie! Dominic Monaghan (Meriadoc Brandybuck) came on board to be our wonderful narrator! Actually this film is a time capsule of many decades of pop culture history — giving us the full story on how the world has embraced Tolkien’s masterpiece THE LORD OF THE RINGS over 50 years and more!
Winner of the Outstanding Achievement Award at the Newport Beach Film Festival, RINGERS was produced in association with TheOneRing.net — this remarkable little film was forged BY fans and FOR fans, just like our website, with the production/writing talent of Clifford “Quickbeam” Broadway (who hosts TORn TUESDAY every week), Jeff Marchelletta, and supercool director Carlene Cordova. It was executive produced by X-Men/Transformers guru Tom DeSanto.
With a wonderful rock-driven score and detailing all the outpouring of love bestowed on Tolkien over many generations, this film is a must-have for your digital collection! Get it on iTunes now for only $9.99!
From the original Sony Press Release:
“RINGERS is comprehensive, entertaining and informative pop culture history.” – The Toronto Star
“…Will always be a salient part of ‘LORD OF THE RINGS’ history…
See it, absorb it, love it.” – FilmThreat
Winner of “Outstanding Achievement” Award at the
Newport Beach Film Festival
FASCINATING DOCUMENTARY CAPTURES THE HISTORY, INFLUENCE AND PHENOMENON THAT IS LORD OF THE RINGS
CULVER CITY, Calif. (September 12, 2005) – Sony invites you to return to the Shirewith the release of the feature-length documentary RINGERS: LORD OF THE FANS,direct to DVD.In association with the popular fan-site TheOneRing.net, Carlene Cordova produced, directed and wrote this award-winning film with executive producer Tom DeSanto(X-Men, X2: X-Men United and Transformers), which charts the incredible influence and ripple-effect that Lord of the Rings has had on worldwide pop culture over the past five decades.Whether you are a fan or first timer, critics agree, RINGERS, stands as the most comprehensive film documenting the ongoing impact of J.R.R. Tolkien’s literary achievement.
Dominic Monaghan (star of ABC’s Lost and the Academy Award® winning Lord of the Rings trilogy) narrates the documentary as it looks behind the curtain between Lord of the Rings andhow it inspired so many artists of different mediums.The film moves beyond “cult classic” and through different generations unearthing the way legendary rock musicians, filmmakers, professors, actors and authors all unite under the banner of ‘Ringer.’Interviewees included in the film are Lord of the Rings trilogy filmmaker Peter Jackson as well as Elijah Wood, Viggo Mortensen, Ian McKellen, Sean Astin and David Carradine.Infused with a dynamic rock-driven score, irreverent cut-out animation (á la Terry Gilliam), and a centerpiece audience sing-a-long, RINGERS is a genre-busting documentary that shows how a single literary work continues to spark the minds and hearts of millions.
RINGERS continues the momentum of the motion picture trilogy Lord of the Rings, a winner of 17 Academy Awards including Best Picture and Best Director for Peter Jackson, who made history as the first person to direct three major feature films simultaneously.
From the official synopsis:
Ringers: Lord of the Fans is a feature-length documentary that reveals the ongoing cultural phenomenon created by The Lord of the Rings. Very funny and often moving, Ringers shows the hidden power behind Tolkien’s books — and how after 50 years a single literary work continues to spark the minds and hearts of millions, across cultures and across time.
Shot with groundbreaking new digital technology in 24P, Ringers explores the real foundations of Middle-earth; a community of true fans who share a common bond. Moving beyond “cult classic” and over several different generations, the film unearths academics, musicians, authors, filmmakers, and a plethora of pop junkies — the people gathered under the banner of ‘Ringer.’ From the hippie counter-culture to the electronic age; from the Bakshi animated film to Jackson’s epic trilogy; this documentary brings together extensive footage from across the globe. With units in Los Angeles, San Diego, Atlanta, Salt Lake City, Bonn, Germany, Wellington, New Zealand, and Oxford, England, our cameras capture the most fascinating “Ringers” and Lord of the Rings events.
What began as the private amusement of a tweedy Oxford professor has now become a new mythology for the 21st century. Ringers: Lord of the Fans shows how an adventure story published in 1954 has had dynamic ripple-effects through Western pop-culture. Ringers carefully pulls away the veil between Tolkien’s book and the creations of art, music, and community that have been inspired by it.
Welcome to the latest “Getting to know” – questions that need answering. It’s based on the old Getting to know you threads that I occasionally post on the message boards here on TORn, so those familiar with them will know that the questions can be a little crazy and the answers even crazier.
This month we’re asking questions of self-described Online guy at Weta Workshop and all round top bloke, Magnus Hjert.
To celebrate the release of The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey in Australia on May 1st, Popcorn Taxi had a special showing of the film with a Q&A session with Richard Armitage. RingerSpy and long time message board member, Deleece Cook aka Elven, was lucky enough to attend and sent us the following report on the night.
The new Gollum in The Hobbit is technologically updated from the LOTR trilogy.
Our own staffer Justin brought this excellent chat between Stuff magazine and Weta Digital’s Joe Letteri to light. Letteri discusses some of “The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey” and the challenges of shooting in 3D at 48 fps, but he also has some interesting things to say about Smaug.
Letteri on Smaug: “Really, we could’ve done Smaug in the traditional way – just ask Benedict Cumberbatch to come into a voice booth and record his dialogue, and do everything entirely with keyframe animation. But when we record what Benedict’s body is doing, it frees him up to give us some idea of the physicality and intimate the poses, so that what he’s got on his mind can come through in how he’s performing it – and we’ll take that and extend it into what we do with the dragon.”
Letteri on revisiting Gollum: “I don’t think so – it’s not something that Peter’s ever indicated that he was interested in doing, and for my mind I’m happy to just have the film be finished as a film. We were lucky to be able to come back and do Gollum now with what we know ten years later – we have the best of both worlds, we can do that in new scenes. But even if that hadn’t been the case, I’m inclined to say a film exists in and of its time – and if you want to see something new, go and make a new film.”
You can read the rest of the excellent article right here!
TORn staffer Saystine found us another great interview video from Yahoo! Movies UK in which Hobbit cast members Richard Armitage, James Nesbitt, and Andy Serkis discuss how the second film in the trilogy, The Desolation of Smaug, will differ from An Unexpected Journey.
“It will get more dangerous and dark as Bilbo gets further away from home and in more jeopardy,” says Andy Serkis, who, in addition to playing Gollum in the films, is Second Unit Director on the trilogy.
Will we enjoy the departure from the more lighthearted nature of Unexpected Journey? Well Richard Armitage will, at least. He says, “Obviously I favor the dark.”
If you missed the Live Sneak Peek at The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug on March 24, and you can now access the archived version of the event at http://thehobbit.com/sneak if you have an access code from purchasing one of several versions of The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey. But for those of you who have not yet had the opportunity to get your hands on a copy of the film (perhaps you’re holding out for the Extended Edition, or you are in a country that it hasn’t been released in yet), don’t despair! Peter Jackson has released an excerpt from the live event on YouTube. The 6-minute clip includes Peter answering several “fan” questions, including those from Stephen Colbert and Billy Boyd.
Peter Jackson says, “Warner Bros have kindly let me post a six-minute excerpt of the Live Event we did to preview The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug, to give anyone who missed it a sense of what it was like.”
From the HollywoodReporter.com: Warner Home Video easily snagged the top spot on both national home video sales charts the week ending March 24 with New Line’s The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey.
The fantasy flick, which earned $302.7 million in U.S. theaters and was directed by Lord of the Rings helmer Peter Jackson, easily outsold several other high-profile theatrical features that also bowed on disc the same week.
Demand was high for all three titles, but Hobbit was clearly the cream of the crop. Nielsen figures show Les Miserables sold just 33.8 percent as many units as Hobbit, while Zero Dark Thirty trailed with 21.4 percent. (To be fair, Les Mis came out on a Friday, so it didn’t have a full week of sales in the tracking period.)
If you missed the Peter Jackson hosted first look at The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug, or just want to watch it over again, a modified version is now available and archived on the Trilogy’s official website: www.thehobbit.com/sneak. To access the footage, use your UltraViolet code on your copy The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey Blu-ray Combo Pack, Blu-ray 3D Combo Pack or 2-Disc Special Edition DVD. Please note, you will only be able to access the footage three times per code. So make good use of your opportunities! You will also notice the footage is now twenty minutes shorter than the live counterpart. And of course, if you want to geek out a bit celebrating the teasing of Smaug (aka Peter’s Dragon) check out our latest T-Shirt in our Emporium! [Hobbit Sneak] [T-Shirt]
This afternoon many of us spent an hour with Peter Jackson (well, virtually, anyway!) as he chatted about making The Hobbit movies, and gave us some tantalising glimpses of what may be to come in the second film, The Desolation of Smaug. We’ve already posted some detailed commentary on what was shown; here below are some of the things which made TORn staffers geek out, as they watched their computer screens – and some speculation on what these things might mean!
Greendragon: Of course I would be excited about something to do with a dragon! It seemed to me that we saw Smaug’s ‘laser eyes’ in part of the footage – a scene was shown where Martin Freeman was playing around with putting the ring on, in Smaug’s lair. The lighting was red, shining on a specific area and then moving across the pile of gold – suggesting the ‘piercing ray of red from under the drooping lid of Smaug’s left eye.’ It was nice to see this glimpse of the power of Smaug’s eyes – the danger of the dragon-spell!
Demosthenes: The actual extended scene we were shown from The Desolation of Smaug was of Gandalf and Radagast visiting the Nazgûl tombs. Okay, this has me excited because there’s a heap of spoiler analysis and guesswork that we can all play with. Who built the tombs? If they were built by the Dúnedain of Arnor (the selfsame Dúnedain who never make an appearance in the film of the Lord of the Rings, I might say!), then why does Radagast call the sigils on the walls foul? [In the clip, we see engraving on the walls above a door of a tomb, the bars of which have been wrenched or blasted open.] Is that an implication that they were built by the Dúnedain of Rhudaur who fell into evil with the realm of Angmar? And what do the Tengwar letters — for they are a type of Tengwar – say? Do they bind? Do they nurture? Is it a transliteration to English? Or is it in Adûnaic, Quenya or Sindarin?
Why are they in the high fells (of Rhudaur)? What could have possibly prompted both Gandalf and Radagast to travel back over the Misty Mountains to investigate? Lots of questions — lots of opportunity to guess stuff! Moreover, I’m buzzed that Gandalf says there are NINE tombs. It’s what I guessed when I first saw this sequence last year, and I also felt that the bars indicated that whoever was in there broke out, and that there were letters over those doorways.
Rasputin the Evil Balrog: The boat scene got me excited [where we saw the dwarves, Bilbo and Bard on a boat, together with a collection of barrels], combined with what Peter had to say about the character of Bard being enigmatic – we don’t know if he’s good or bad. It reminded me of the way they chose to create Faramir’s character in The Two Towers, giving him much more depth and motivation than I feel he has in the books. A lot of book purists disagree with me because they like the fact that Faramir is presented as the archetype of the ever-noble hero, but I thought the way they played him was much more modern and interesting. I think we’re going to see something similar with Bard. In the book, he’s set in opposition to the debauched, corrupt master of Lake-town, but it seems like Peter is implying that we’ll get a few more twists and turns to our Bard story!
Deej: In the various glimpses of scenes between Thranduil and his son Legolas, it was interesting to see that there might be a conflict between father and son regarding the way the dwarves are treated. Although he’s not in the book, I had expected Legolas to go along with his father – it would explain why he and Gimli aren’t on friendly terms when the Fellowship is first formed. Could this difference of opinion lead Legolas (and Tauriel?) to help the dwarves and Bilbo escape Mirkwood?
Grammaboodawg: To see Legolas with his father, Thranduil, is incredible! After years of imagining Legolas in Mirkwood and in a relationship with his father, this shot has had a profound impact on me. Like seeing the White Council… it’s exciting to have the imagined moments of this story finally becoming real. Also, in one of the moments where we saw Bilbo in Smaug’s lair, there was an interesting glow at Bilbo’s right hand. Could it be the Arkenstone??
Kelvarhin: The thing I was most excited about was seeing the concept drawings of Mirkwood, by WETA artist Gus Hunter. I’ve always envisaged it as being all twisted trees, dark and very menacing, and those images nailed it perfectly. Can’t wait to see the finished images on the big screen.
Demosthenes: The beautiful concept artwork by John Howe which we were shown, for the entrance to Thranduil’s realm in Mirkwood, is almost identical to Alan Lee’s painting of Menegroth – which can be seen here . This is particularly cool because, for Tolkien, Menegroth was probably a template of sorts for the Halls of the Elven King as first described in The Hobbit. I’m pretty sure that if you go back as far as the Book of Lost Tales there is some description of the halls of Tinwelint the elf/gnome king that has a similarity to The Hobbit — that bridge over the river particularly.
Kili: Glimpsing Tauriel was a pleasant surprise. She comes across as a panther whose mask of calm will shred at the slightest provocation. In comparison to fellow Elven warriors Legolas and Elrond, it was refreshing to see what a hot-blooded captain of the guard might be like. There is a lot of tension in the fandom surrounding her character, but if this glimpse is anything to go by, then she can stand proudly alongside Éowyn, Arwen, and Galadriel. Tolkien’s dearth of female characters is troublesome, and I applaud Jackson and his team for taking the risk of inventing a bold new character who not only feels authentic to her culture and circumstances, but whose ferocity will have a special resonance with her fellow woman warriors in the audience.
Quickbeam: I was completely surprised at how Peter Jackson himself appears so relaxed, playful, and at-ease. Notwithstanding all the visual surprises and exciting bits of sets/ characters/ and effects work we are treated to glimpsing, I am honestly more blown away at his casual confidence. You must understand that P.J. is under tremendous amounts of pressure and a work-load that defies description. Yet there he is, making light jokes about Colbert’s coffee cups or showing us his favorite vintage movie one-sheets as if we, the live camera, were just old friends visiting on a relaxed weekend and he has all the leisure time in the world. It’s a remarkable illusion, because he is the one man on Middle-earth who DOES NOT have leisure time or anything going “easy” for him — while juggling huge budgets, scheduling all the re-shoots, editing a movie with higher standards upon it than anything, yammering phone calls from the studio’s lawyers, incessant fans chirping and tweeting about the appropriateness of Azog, Tauriel, Nazgûl tombs, etc. etc. etc. Imagine how delightful it is for us to see this creative powerhouse of a director just as cool as a cucumber. His light-hearted spirit shines through even though he carries a special burden… and that makes me VERY confident that he’s the Master of his own Destiny like no other filmmaker, and has a good handle on everything that needs doing.
And a final thought: I was surprised to NOT see our shape-shifting ursine friend, Beorn. We see just one axe chopping a piece of wood outside Beorn’s Hall, and another shot of the Company of Dwarves running into his doorway (excellent sense of scale there between the Dwarves and Beorn’s furnishings)… but certainly no Mikael Persbrandt to be seen. That’s curious, given the recent news stories confirming his role will be expanded in The Desolation of Smaug. So we are treated to lots of Luke Evans as Bard, which is grand, but nothing of Beorn. We shall wait and see.
Garfeimao: Lake-town interests me, with the dichotomy of what appears to be close to a shanty town on the exterior, but has much richer interiors. Or maybe it’s just like that for the Master of the Lake-town and his home. Since Lake-town is on the water, the wooden buildings all have a decayed and somewhat tilting appearance to them. But the Master’s bedroom is very lush looking, with dark wood paneled floors, walls and ceilings, a four poster bed, a giant oil painting (of himself, no less) and lovely windows on both sides. And from one of the group shots of the citizens of the town, they are in dark clothing and do not appear to be richly dressed. Last year at San Diego Comic Con, the sneak peek included a scene with the Master running into a home, one I assume is his own, and throwing back a carpet and opening a trap door beneath to reveal a horde of treasure comprised of what appears to be brass, gold and silver pots, candlesticks, dishes and the like. It is clear he is wealthy, and somewhat miserly and actually has a rather smarmy, slimy appearance to him. The fact that his servant is rather Gríma like in appearance just adds to the rather distasteful vibe he gives off. I also found it interesting they decided to give Bard a bit of a duality to him as well, so that Bilbo and the dwarves are left wondering if they can trust anyone in Lake-town.
Oh, and can I get a shout out for the wicked cool War Moose-antlered Throne that Thranduil is lounging in when the Company of Dwarves, as prisoners, are brought into his Halls? The epitome of the rather haughty Elf described in the book, to be sure.
But what I most appreciated from this hour long glimpse into The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug was the insight into Peter Jackson’s command of his mis-en-scène. This means his complete control of everything in front of the camera, from costumes and colors, hair and make up, set design and lighting to the angle of the cameras and the distance of the shot and the movement of the actors and props in frame. The example of the boat and the range of shots perfectly exemplifies how a storyteller can frame the action and use a variety of shots to tell the exact story they want because they truly have selected every frame you are seeing. Some of the quick sequences of shots shown at the very end only hint at the story to come, but it has intrigued me the way any good trailer grabs and audience.
Elessar: I was excited to see more of Mirkwood, Legolas, Thranduil, and Tauriel. Today’s event gave us plenty of that to look at, and while it wasn’t finished you can start to put that mental image together. I’ve had a mental image of what I thought Mirkwood looked like and what we saw felt like it was pulled directly from my brain! I loved seeing Legolas in action, and I love the look he has in this movie - mostly because it’s going to show the giant leap Legolas makes from The Hobbit to The Lord of the Rings. Seeing Thranduil in all his glory was fantastic, and I loved the scene of him getting in Thorin’s face, adding more to why Elves and Dwarves don’t like each other. Tauriel also looked awesome and I think I’m going to really like this character. A scene with her, Legolas, Thranduil, and an Orc looks like it will be really good. I did enjoy the Gandalf/Radagast sequence and am eager to see how the continued addition of this plot line runs. Mostly, I just loved spending an hour watching things to come. Is it December yet??
So much excitement – and we haven’t even seen a proper trailer yet!!
If you missed the Peter Jackson hosted first look at The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug, or just want to watch it over again, a modified version will be archived on the Trilogy’s official website: www.thehobbit.com/sneak. To access the footage, use your UltraViolet code on your copy The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey Blu-ray Combo Pack, Blu-ray 3D Combo Pack or 2-Disc Special Edition DVD.
Kiwi satire website The Civilian pokes some fun at Peter Jackson, envisioning a scenario where the three Hobbit screenwriters plan to novelise the three Hobbit films.
AWARD-WINNING New Zealand director Peter Jackson has said he’s considering a novel adaptation of his popular film trilogy The Hobbit.
The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, the first film in the series, was released late last year to widespread popularity, grossing more than $1,000,000,000 worldwide at the box office. That success has inspired Jackson – who was reportedly “captivated” by his story – to make it available in other mediums. (more…)
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