UK fans should get hold of the Mail on Sunday for its fantastic behind-the-scenes magazine article.

I’ve tossed together a couple of reports that people have sent in. These are more specific about what goodies you can look forward to.

Warning: There are also some TTT and RoTK rumours. So this might be spoiler territory for some.

From Jon: There are 33 pages (including the ads!!) of stuff, including character bios, and a brilliant map of Helm’s Deep showing the stages of the battle, the movement of forces (with story spoilers).

It also gives a strong hint on pages 46-47 of what The Return Of The King will be like with a brief interview with John Noble (Denethor), and Peter Jackson saying “the battles will be the biggest you have ever seen.”

Briefly the magazine covers: the main characters, including all the types of forces of darkness (orcs, uruk-hai, bezerkers, and Grishnakh); a profile of Karl Urban; profile of Miranda Otto; creating Gollum; a look at locations in NZ; an interview with PJ; a visit to Weta; Armies of Darkness; and a tour of the battle of Helm’s Deep.

The article mentions piloting a new software that will enable up to 200,000 computer generated characters in battle – I guess this is Massive.

Jackson also hints strongly that Sauron will feature as a character in the ROTK, as he says “you can’t reduce him to being a big guy striding around in black armour, but he cannot be limited to a flaming eye.”

roborambo writes that this quote seems to be from a quite old (pre-filming??) interview that was conducted with Jackson some time ago. You can read it here. Scroll down and read Question Four. Hence this information might not be accurate – it might not even refer to RoTK!

The bonus CD-ROM contains the original teaser, the current theatrical trailer, several dozen photos, and several short documentaries.

From PennyQ: I eagerly awaited the arrival of the paperboy this morning! I ve played the free disc it has the teaser trailer, the long trailer and the trailer for the Extended Edition DVD, plus the picture gallery, wallpapers, screensaver and character info that have been on the official website before, and three behind the scenes movies that give a few new images and info. The magazine has 24 pages of info and pics about Grima, Treebeard, Gollum, Karl Urban, Miranda Otto, Peter Jackson, special effects, the enemy, the Fellowship, Helm s Deep and there s also a competition to win tickets to the premiere in London (closing date Dec 4th)

From Heather: You guys already know about the Mail on sunday special in the UK, well I’ve just read it and there is a major spoiler for ROTK! According to The Mail on Sunday, PJ has said that the last shot in ROTK is of Valinor, all grey and misty so we must see Frodo leaving.

If it’s of Valinor, we must see a little more than the departure from the Grey Havens – which is the last scene with Frodo, Bilbo and Gandalf in the book. Remember that the Grey Havens are not Valinor, only a point of departure to get *to* Valinor. – Dem.

Update: Correction from PW: The article actually says the Grey Havens.

Jackson has already earmarked the film’s final scene, which takes place amid the sweeping landscape of the Grey Havens, as his favourite.

“To me, it’s a culmination of the entire story; it represents what it is to give and what it is to lose,” he says. “That scene is probably the most powerful part of the entire film.”

So scotch that Valinor rumour, guys.