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Archive for April, 2006

More Fun in The Shire Park

Ian Collier at The Tolkien Society:

More Fun in The Shire Park: 13th-14th May 2006

This is the seventh Tolkien Weekend event, and the theme for this year’s event is “The Shire” is now an annual item in the Birmingham calendar. Sarehole Mill itself was the “original” for the Mill at Bywater in the Shire in The Lord of the Rings and is a central point in the Shire Country Park that covers the River Cole, Chinn Brook, as well as Moseley Bog, the Dell and the Dingles where JRR Tolkien played as a child.

Entertainments and Activities for visitors include:

  • Displays from The Tolkien Society and Birmingham Libraries about Tolkien’s life and works within the mill itself which will have a miller demonstrating his craft with the mill’s greater wheel running
  • Shire Productions will perform excerpts from The Hobbit in the new Performance Arena, which is also the location for watching the Re-enactment Societies and the Morris Dancers
  • The Tolkien Tent will feature Birmingham Central Library’s new exhibition “Tolkien’s Boyhood in Birmingham”, Elvish lessons (speaking Sindarin and writing Tengwar), displays from Isengard (the Birmingham Tolkien Society group), Games Workshop games and Philip Coker reading The Scouring of the Shire.
  • The Unexpected Party Café is opens to serve teas, refreshments and entertainment from: the Green Man Storyteller; folk musicians; Stuart Estell and Allan Recardo (former Birmingham Poets Laureate); Chris Adderley reading from Beowulf and “Open Mic” sessions with Paul Woodward. Write Fantastic, a group of SF writers including Stan Nicholls, Chaz Brenchley, and Mark Chadbourn will be interviewed about how J.R.R. Tolkien has influenced their work.
  • The Ent on the green behind the Mill is the starting point for the many popular themed walks, each with their own expert guide, around The Shire Country Park, taking in Moseley Bog, the River Cole, Moseley School, around themes of wildlife, Tolkien’s childhood haunts, nature or archaeology.
  • Discover the Birmingham’s Two Towers, Perrott’s Folly and the Water Board Chimney by vinatge bus plus there are two new locations to visit on the Tolkien Trail. On Saturday the destination is The Oratory where the Tolkiens attended Mass (as well as the magnificent church, there’s a tour of Cardinal Newman’s Library). On Sunday there is a rare opportunity to visit King Edward’s School and see their Tolkien archive display, his name on the Honours Board and the chapel built from the stones of the old school that he attended in central Birmingham.
  • You can shop in the Craft Marquees or at the award winning Moseley Farmers’ Market. There is a Children’s’ Activity Tent with a wand workshop, henna/temporary tattoos and a willow workshop and out on the field there are amusements for younger children, train rides, treasure trails, archery, a coconut shy, woodland crafts, Wythall Radio Society and the Ranger Encampment.

This unique event now attracts 10,000 visitors and offers a weekend of fun for all the family. 11 am – 5 pm Admission free both days.

Visit or

Posted in Events, Fans, Meet Ups, Old Special Reports, Other Events

David Wenham’s “Three Dollars”

Wenham's 'Three Dollars'
Garfeimao writes: I was quite surprised at how much I liked “Three Dollars”. I’d heard of the film, but was not sure if it was a story I was going to like, but it was quite charming. It’s a real basic family drama, but is wonderfully acted by David as the husband, Francis O’Connor as his wife and an adorable young Joanna Hunt-Prokhovnik as their daughter. The little girl was just so natural and the two main adults worked so well together and with her that it felt like a real family. That was the charming bit.

The drama was fairly typical, but very well done. My one gripe would be that in the flashback sequences, that they tried a bit harder on hair and clothes to really get the feeling of being in the past. Because they didn’t do much with hair or make up or costuming, the flashbacks weren’t always obvious enough to pick up on what timeline we were in. Oh, and any film that ends with Joy Division is worth the price of admission alone.

The crowd turn out wasn’t what was hoped for, but with a 5pm screening on a Tuesday, it was nice to see more than 20 people there. David Wenham came up and introduced the film and his history working with the director before. It seemed like the audience enjoyed the film, and they should have, it was quite a nice little gem to discover at the festival.

The pictures included are of David alone, David with Gregg Schwenk, the Director of the Newport Beach Film Festival and the man who offered free entrance to anyone who came from’s post about the film, and then the last pics are David with me and Elisa, a fellow Ringer. For those who were unable to make it, I can not tell you if “Three Dollars” will ever get a release in the US, but you should definitely be on the look out for it if it does.

On a side note, the Raiders of the Lost Ark: The Adaptation, which screened on Monday night, was absolutely amazing. I can not even begin to describe just how amazing this film is. It’s not high tech, it’s not even good quality film, having been done 20 years ago on Betacams, but it’s just a marvel to see. I guess the best way to describe it is to say it’s a ‘Love Letter’ to the Magic of Film. You can’t help but feel joy while watching it, it reminds you what it was like to be a kid, playing in the yard, acting out your favorite films or TV shows. These kids did the same thing, only with a camera, an attempt to make costumes and sets, and the absolute belief they could do everything Lucas and Spielberg did. And to qoute one audience member I overherd “These kids were fearless”, which is proven by one being set on fire and others climbing around on a moving truck. If this fan film ever screens in your area, run, don’t walk, to the theater and get ready to relive the innocent years when your imagination would let you believe you could be Indiana Jones.

Posted in David Wenham, Events, Film Screenings, Lord of the Rings, LotR Cast News, LotR Movies, Old Special Reports

Bean’s bad belly

Actor Sean Bean is struggling on the Indian set of his new TV series Sharpe’s Challenge after suffering a bout of food poisoning. The Lord Of The Rings star was among a number of cast and crew members to be struck down with the notorious ‘Delhi belly’ while shooting the period war drama – a reprisal of the character that made him a household name. [More]

Posted in Lord of the Rings, LotR Cast News, LotR Movies, Old Main News, Sean Bean

The X-factor

He’s a national treasure: an acting colossus whose extraordinary repertoire has taken in everything from Alfred the Great to Zebedee. And with the Da Vinci Code and X-Men 3 due for release next month, Sir Ian McKellen is showing no sign of putting up his feet. Here, he talks to Simon Garfield about American homophobics and English eccentrics, and why doing Corrie proves ‘he can’t be a star’. [More]

Posted in Ian McKellen, Lord of the Rings, LotR Cast News, Old Main News

Andy Serkis in Empire Magazine

Serkis in Empire Magazine Rosie writes: The latest issue of Empire features Andy in it’s monthly “Pint of Milk” interview, where he reveals his ‘criminal’ past, nicking stuff from hotel rooms and how much he expects to pay for a pint of milk. [More]

Posted in Andy Serkis, Lord of the Rings, LotR Cast News, LotR Movies, Old Main News

I will never forgive Jackson, says LOTR actor

Actor Christopher Lee has agreed to put aside his differences with Kiwi director Peter Jackson – but will never forgive him for axing his scenes from The Return of the King. Speaking exclusively to the Herald on Sunday at the Rose d’Or festival in Switzerland last night, Lee revealed that while he was still upset by the decision to remove his character, Saruman, from the third instalment of the Lord of the Rings series, it was now time to move on. “When the third film came along and I wasn’t in it, I didn’t understand,” he said. “And I still don’t. “However, you can have a difference of opinion in any walk of life but you can’t have ongoing arguments. I like Peter very much. He’s a brilliant director. I just don’t know why he did what he did.” [More]

Posted in Christopher Lee, Lord of the Rings, LotR Cast News, LotR Movies, Movie Return of the King, Old Main News, Peter Jackson

Congrats to Billy Boyd!

Stewart writes: Billy and Ali are delighted to announce the birth of their son, Jack William Boyd. Jack was born on the 26th April and weighed in at very healthy 6lbs 10oz. Both mother and child are doing very, very well and Billy is exceptional proud of them both. Great happiness!

TORN and her fans all wish Billy and Ali the best!

Posted in Billy Boyd, Lord of the Rings, LotR Cast News, LotR Movies, Old Main News

New Billy’s Loons Auction

The folks from Billy’s Loons Charities write: We would like to announce an auction of a super cool, orginally designed baseball-style shirt (“The World is Joyful with Trees”) from the Project-Monaghan store, signed by Billy Boyd. All proceeds from the auction will go to the Scottish Youth Theatre,, where Billy Boyd is a Patron, and Billy’s Loons Charities is a Sponsor. Many thanks to Billy Boyd for signing the shirt at the One Ring Celebration (ORC) 2006 in Pasadena, and to Auntie Nu for the photograph! Click here to see the shirt and bid. [More]

Posted in Billy Boyd, Clothing, Events, Lord of the Rings, LotR Cast News, LotR Movies, Merchandise, Old Main News, Other Events

Get ‘Lost’ Tonight!

Dominic Monaghan’s Golden Globe winning show ‘Lost’ is on tonight at 9PM EST on ABC. TORN’s chatroom now has a special ‘Lost’ screening room, login to #lost at 9PM and watch with fans from around the country! [] [TORN Chat]

Posted in Barliman News, Barlimans, Dominic Monaghan, Events, Lord of the Rings, LotR Cast News, LotR Movies, Old Main News, Television

Vacaville’s Middle Earth Festival 2006

Vacaville’s Middle Earth Festival 2006 Celebriel reports: Vacaville’s second Middle Earth Festival, April 21-23, 2006, offered a weekend full of varied activities to appeal to both die-hard Ringers and novices alike, including music and song, crafts, Tolkien discussion forums, and fun stuff including a costume contest, trivia contest, Hairy Foot contest, Gollum impersonation contest (one entry form to be shared by both personalities), evening party, and slide show of the New Zealand film locations. Also on scene were lots of Ren-Faire type vendors, food vendors, and, of course, Downtown Vacaville’s own many shops and restaurants. [More]

Posted in Events, Fans, Meet Ups, Old Main News, Other Events

Headbanging hobbits?

So what’s with all the head-banging bookworms? Brazilian heavy-metal band Sepultura released Dante XXI, an album based on Dante’s Divine Comedy. And Mastodon recently became metal’s newest stars with Leviathan, a Moby Dick-inspired album with songs such as “I Am Ahab” and “Seabeast.” With its preoccupation with evil, dry ice and alternately shrieking and growling vocals, heavy metal has come by its goofball image honestly. But wearing leather and spikes doesn’t mean you don’t crack open a book occasionally. [More]

Posted in Miscellaneous, Old Main News

TV Watch: Wood on “Punk’d”…For Real This Time

Deenan writes: OK, the date was rumored wrong. Elijah Wood’s stint on MTV’s “Punk’d” was not last night (April 24th) but will be aired on Monday May 1st @10:00pm EST. For sure this time. Really! I’ll send along the link to the show’s website again, but it doesn’t show the actual times or guests. But after seeing the previews on last night’s episode, they did mention he will be on this Monday the 1st. [More]

Posted in Elijah Wood, Events, Lord of the Rings, LotR Cast News, LotR Movies, Old Main News, Television