Boue69 writes: The small boat in which Smeagol and Deagol are fishing in the first scene appears to be a coracle, which is a boat used by the Irish going back to Neolithic times. It was still in use into the 20th century. Coracles are generally made out of branches and animal skins. The choice of a coracle would make sense, since ancient Irish culture closely resembled many aspects of cultures presented in LoTR. Moreover, it is easy to picture ancient Irish fisherman living in much the same way the Stoors did. For more information, I recommend In Search of Ancient Ireland by Carmel McCaffrey and Leo Eaton. [More]
AND! Verifying something that Peter Jackson let slip at TORn’s Oscar Party, lots of sharp-eyed Ringers pointed out that in one of the extras, (spoiler follows) Gimli appears to try to talk Legolas into a drinking game at Edoras..