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.
As TORn readers will no doubt have heard by now, Ray Harryhausen, the man who pioneered stop motion photography and led the way to many of the special effects we take for granted today, died on Tuesday. He was 92. His classic films, such as Jason and the Argonauts and Clash of the Titans, inspired many future movie makers, with their wonderful scenes of monsters and mythical creatures, brought to life by Harryhausen’s brilliant use of stop motion technique. As a teenager, Harryhausen had himself been inspired by the 1933 King Kong; it seems fitting, then, that he in turn became a source of great inspiration for a teenage Peter Jackson, who of course made his own King Kong movie in 2005. USA Today quoted this statement from Peter Jackson: ‘The Lord of the Rings is my Ray Harryhausen movie. Without his lifelong love of his wondrous images and storytelling it would never have been made — not by me, at least.’
You can read more about Ray Harryhausen here. In 2010, BAFTA paid special tribute to Harryhausen in celebration of his 90th birthday. Peter Jackson was a surprise guest, and at the event he showed some of his earliest attempts as a teenage film maker, clearly inspired by Harryhausen’s movies. Jackson’s presentation – and those wonderful, early film clips – can be seen here.
The film industry has lost a legend; RIP Ray Harryhausen.
It was an interesting journey the filmmaker and Hobbit actor Jed Brophy took us on in one hour, we where guided along the stages and rooms of Park Road Post in Miramar, Wellington, to where we finally ended up in Peter Jackson’s’ home away from home the editing room in his traditional bare feet.
Jed was a great host along side Peter Jackson who explained certain things on the way to the editing room, we saw snippets of work in progress, Azog and an Orc in motion capture, some Pre-Viz of Smaug the Dragon, of whom we only saw snippets of in The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, which is akin to the unfinished Gollum in his first but brief appearance in Fellowship of The Ring, before he was fully realized as a digital character in the Two Towers, he was a mere shadow of himself you could say..
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.
TeamCoco.com, aka Conan O’Brien, one of America’s most popular late-night talk show hosts, got their hands on Willie Nelson’s audition tape for, what they call, ‘The Hobbit 2.’ In the video, Willie suggests to Peter Jackson that he may make a better Gandalf than Ian McKellen. (Strong language and content warning!) [Direct Video Link]
Note:A photo gallery follows the text and videos, click for larger versions.
The mill at Hobbiton Movie Set
NEW ZEALAND — During the world premiere of “The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey,” New Zealand wisely took the opportunity to show journalists from around the world (and Australia) a lot of the amazing things its island nation has to offer. TheOneRing.net was part of one of the tours and rather than regurgitate all the footage, photos and writing we gathered at once, exactly when all the other journalism outlets of the world did, we thought it would be great to disperse it and share it over the course of 2013 in the lead up to “The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug.”
After all, Tourism New Zealand’s motto is “New Zealand is Middle-earth” and this is true in so many ways and for much longer than just the weeks after the debut of the film. For example, above is the video made for TORn by fellow filmmaker Dan McBride who shot and edited the video tour you probably have already watched. We, and a gaggle of other media, toured the Hobbiton Movie Set and witnessed Prime Minister John Key open the new Green Dragon building accompanied by a bunch of actors who reminded us a whole lot of a company of Dwarves. (Incidentally, we had just talked to him the day before so when he showed up again, we wondered why we were being followed and what we had done wrong.)
The video speaks for itself but this remarkable property is, as far as I know, unique in all the world for its ability to transport visitors inside a book, or a movie for that matter. Being there doesn’t feel like walking on a set, rather it feels like immersion. It looks, smells, sounds and feels like one imagines Hobbiton would if you could take a magic wardrobe to J.R.R. Tolkien’s Middle-earth. The Hobbit holes scattered about are, more or less, as they were for filming of “The Hobbit,” movies. It seems safe to assume we will see more of The Shire in subsequent movies and in the Extended Edition on home video before the end of the year.
At the Green Dragon
Meanwhile, not far from Auckland, sits this unique and amazing tourism experience. The still functioning sheep and cattle farm where the now-permanent movie set is placed, is owned by the Alexander family, as it was when discovered for “The Lord of the Rings,” films. Their television rugby match interrupted by strangers led to parts of the family farm being among the most beloved locations in fantasy film and literature. Now visitors take tours daily, either by booking directly through the farm or through travel agents, tours or cruise ships. There are several options available, including overnight farm stays, private tours and lunch options. Matamata, as authentic a small New Zealand town as you will find, serves as a gateway to the farm, offering transportation daily and had just opened a visitor’s center when we visited.
Hamilton is also near with more accommodations and an airport. Not far from Auckland, 160 kilometers in fact, visitors can easily manage the two hour car ride. It goes without saying that driving through the countryside is spectacular as well. My dream would be to meet with TheOneRing.net staff and friends in The Green Dragon, which can be reserved for private functions. They serve food and drink and I just bet you can guess what size the ale comes in. Weddings have and will happen here. The atmosphere and the finish on the place are just as good as you hope they are. In truth, for movies fans and Tolkien fans, the entire movie set experience is simply magic.
Waitomo Caves Black Water Rafting
Some tourists will hop off the cruise ship or land in Auckland and make the farm their only stop in the region and in my opinion if you made it all the way to New Zealand and don’t see more of the region you are doing it all wrong. The tour also provided us the opportunity to visit the world famous Waitomo caves. They contain the exceptionally cool glow worms and there are different ways to experience it all, including the black water rafting experience that I couldn’t resist. Hamilton serves as a good gateway to both spots and neither is to be missed. In the gallery below I will drop in a few Waitomo photos but it is an entirely different story to be told and if there is any need to explain the importance of caves to Middle-earth, you might be at the wrong website.
The region is full of food and drink, excellent accommodations and plenty more worth-while excursions. We will tackle them all in a future story. But add the farm visit and Waitomo Caves to your bucket lists. They really are wold-class destinations not to be missed but especially not by Tolkienites.
While you are here, please enjoy other videos from the premiere. First, actors talking about rings:
And Red Carpet highlights.
A map of the New Zealand region with Auckland and Matamata.
A detailed map of where The Hobbit Move Set is located near Matamata.
The door of Bilbo and Frodo Baggins.
Seems like a good place for a party
An average human male (Dan McBride) stands in front of a small Hobbit door.
The mill at Hobbiton Movie Set
Water at Hobbiton Movie set
They may not like boats but Hobbits have docks.
The visitor’s center in Matamata, New Zealand.
Flower at Hobbiton Movie Set
Actors look on at the opening ceremony of the Green Dragon
Still water, a view of Hobbiton Movie Set
For scale, an average sized adult (MrCere) at a Hobbit door.
A Hobbit window at Hobbiton Movie Set
Flowers and door at Hobbiton Movie Set
The interior of the Green Dragon
At the Green Dragon
By the lake and the mill sits the Green Dragon
The exterior of the Green Dragon
The bar at The Green Dragon
Detail of the carved green dragon in the Green Dragon
Floor plan on the wall of the Green Dragon of the Green Dragon.
Inside the Green Dragon
Door and menu at the Green Dragon
At the Green Dragon
Interior of the Green Dragon
Waitomo Caves black water rafting with glow worms.
LAS VEGAS – One year ago the first significant screening of footage from “The Hobbit,” made its debut in Las Vegas and at 48 fps. Warner Bros. hoped to wow media and convince cinema owners to upgrade technology. There was a significant mixed reaction from the media and screeners but $1 billion later, nobody seems at all worried and word out of Vegas is, those in the cinema business can’t wait to get another Jackson movie.
But, Warner Bros. has a lineup of loaded films for 2013 and “The Hobbit: Desolation of Smaug” is only a part. Three big time directors were also on hand to introduce their films. Guillermo del Toro, co-writer on “The Hobbit” films was there to introduce “Pacific Rim,” the film he eventually made after historical and monumental delays on the Middle-earth production forced him to leave the project. Zach Snyder was at CinemaCon as director of “Man of Steel,” and Todd Philips for “Hangover 3.” Stockholders must be ecstatic. Snyder is hoping to do with WB’s Superman franchise what Christopher Nolan has done for the company with its Batman flagship. Nolan is a producer on the project.
Variety said the following about “The Hobbit.”
““The Hobbit” director Peter Jackson also appeared in a video with a few brief clips from the “Desolation of Smaug” with Evangeline Lilly and Orlando Bloom appearing.
Jackson’s matter-of-fact presentation was in sharp contrast with last year’s CinemaCon event when WB’s presentation — including 10 minutes of “The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey” — generated a mixed reaction over the pic’s 48 frames-per-second format.”
The Visual Effects industry in Hollywood is in the midst of a crisis that just seems to be getting bigger and bigger. Entertainment Weekly has been keeping on top of the issue and posted a story today that included Peter Jackson’s thought on the problem.
In this week’s issue of Entertainment Weekly, The Hobbit director Peter Jackson, a digital effects pioneer who co-founded the F/X company Weta Digital, says studios are taking advantage of an oversupply of F/X houses to drive down prices. “Competition between VFX houses, which the studios obviously use to their advantage, has resulted in VFX houses operating on tiny profit margins,” Jackson says. “And when we talk ‘profit,’ it’s not about the owners buying a Porsche at the end of a big movie — it’s about having a nest egg to ride out the slow periods.”
To read the full story and see links to other stories about the VFX crisis, head on over to EW.com
Another April Fools joke – courtesy of Ringer Mike…
From Weta Digital, comes this exciting press release about a certain something all fans of Sir Peter Jackson have missed…
Wellington, NZ (April 1st, 2013)–
In response to the lukewarm critical reception of “The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey”, Peter Jackson has announced that he will begin wearing his eyeglasses again.
“It was a public image decision,” Jackson says. “Fran and Philippa and I sat down and brainstormed, trying to figure out why the critics had panned the first ‘Hobbit’ film, despite its commercial success. And then we suddenly realized it wasn’t the film at all! The critics weren’t saying it out loud, but subconsciously they missed the ‘old’ Peter Jackson. And that means they wanted to see the eyeglasses.”
While Jackson hasn’t worn glasses for years and no longer uses his old prescription, he has planned a workaround to the problem. “I can simply pop the lenses out of my old frames, and we’ll be good to go– that is, if I can find them!” he laughs.
But putting the glasses back on is only the first step. Plans are also underway to add glasses back on to all of the behind-the-scenes footage of Peter that has been shot for the Extended Edition DVDs.
Since Weta Digital is already too busy working on effects shots for films two and three, Richard Taylor and Weta Workshop have been placed in charge of the eyeglass project.
“We want fans to feel like they’ve returned to the film-making world they have become acquainted with,” Taylor says. “Realistically inserting eyeglasses into Peter’s interview shots and B-roll footage will add that final crucial element of familiarity that will make this a truly nostalgic behind-the-scenes experience for the extended DVDs.”
Using a recently perfected technique combining advanced facial-recognition software with a slave-motion camera rig, the glasses will be added to Peter’s face using green screens and carefully crafted models.
Taylor has already commissioned a special 18-inch wide “bigature” of Peter’s glasses to be used in the project. “The miniatures department had felt a bit neglected lately, and they were overjoyed to take this on. One has to appreciate the exquisite craftsmanship that is going into this model. Every screw and hinge, every curve of the frame is faithfully reproduced in larger-than-life detail.”
Weta Limited Edition replicas of the glasses will be available as a Comic Con Exclusive in July 2013.
Early fan reaction to the news so far has been positive, and representatives from Warner Bros. were optimistic as well, and in a statement have expressed confidence that the reintroduction of spectacles to Jackson’s image is the right way to go towards making up for the box office disappointment of “The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey”.
Will the glasses really make a difference? What do you think? Sound off!
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