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Archive for September, 2007

‘The History of the Hobbit’ Released

'The History of the Hobbit' Released Sometimes, I just love being me…This week Houghton Mifflin sent me a surprise package which to my delight contained ‘The History of the Hobbit’ part 1 and 2 by John Rateliff. Each volume is available now, while the 3 book set (which included The Hobbit) is available for pre-order on today. Be sure to pick up your copy today!!

‘The History of the Hobbit’ Released

Posted in Books Publications, Hobbit Book, Old Main News, Tolkien

Hall Of Fire & Bilbo Birthday Pic Photos

Tolkien Forever's Hall Of Fire, Sept 22, 2007
Arwen writes: The fifth edition of TORN’s annual Baggins Birthday picnic celebration in Los Angeles’ Griffith Park was a well attended, joyful, fun filled event. Due to the area next to the Merry-Go-round occupied all day by the UN’s “Day Of Peace” activities, the Baggins picnic had to be moved to a different location, and there was some fear that partygoers may get lost, but eventually everyone found their way to the grounds (probably guided by some wizardry from Gandalf!).

After the torrential rains of the previous day, the sun was shining. Of course there was no avoiding the usual bees and yellow jackets (our friend Saruman was stung and showed a badly swollen hand), but overall everything was ideal. There was plenty of food, and everyone ate their fill (it’s not a hobbit picnic for nothing!). Games were played (Golfimbul…), trivia questions were asked and answered, scenes from the movies and the books were re-enacted. And lots of trophies were won. Two birthday cakes were devoured, and raffle prizes were distributed.

We would like to take this opportunity to thank everyone for participating in this weekend’s events, both the picnic and the wonderful Hall of Fire organized by our friends from Tolkien Forever on Saturday. It was a great Tolkien weekend in the LA area, and we look forward to seeing everyone soon again!

Posted in Meet Ups, Old Special Reports

TV Watch: Viggo Mortensen on ‘Letterman’ Clips

Earlier this month Viggo Mortensen was a guest on ‘The Late Show with David Letterman’. He was there to promote his new film ‘Eastern Promises’. Take a look at the clips below for that interview!

Posted in Old Special Reports, Television, Viggo Mortensen

Show your Hobbit Pride and Win Big!

Show us Your Hobbit Pride Giveaway

Our ‘Show us Your Hobbit Pride’ Giveaway is running until October 12th – don’t miss your opportunity to win some great prizes! Follow the link for complete details.

‘Show us your Hobbit Pride’ Giveaway

Posted in Contests, Old Main News, Announcements

Tolkien’s Virtual World Takes Off

Chocolate Fish Cafe to Close? Jeff Anderson is not a nerd. The 40-year-old chief executive of Westwood (Mass.) video game developer Turbine is six feet tall, with the frame of an NFL linebacker. Nevertheless, he presides over a vast and rapidly growing virtual world of elves, orcs, dragons, and hobbits. In April, Anderson’s company took the wraps off the Lord of the Rings Online, a massively multiplayer online role-playing game (MMORPG) for PC, based on J.R.R. Tolkien’s classic books. The explosive growth of the game—players have created some 4 million unique characters in just five months—has vaulted the company into the top tier of online game design companies and made it the largest privately held developer of massively multiplayer games in the U.S.

Tolkien’s Virtual World Takes Off Discuss

Posted in Gaming, Old Main News

Richard Taylor Interview

Richard Taylor Interview Susanne writes: ‘In Business’, a BBC Radio 4 programme, includes an interview with Richard Taylor on his approach to business. ‘In Business hears from .. the man who created the special effects behind the movies of Lord of the Rings and King Kong.’

Richard Taylor Interview

Posted in Old Main News, Richard Taylor

SHOP: The Balrog Legendary Scale Bust from Sideshow Collectibles

The Balrog Legendary Scale BustThe Balrog Legendary Scale Bust is now available over at

“Sideshow Collectibles proudly presents this fantastic new addition to The Lord of the Rings Legendary Scale Bust series. The Balrog has been expertly sculpted to capture every detail of the creature’s menacing visage and flaming hide. Hand-cast of the highest quality polystone, each bust is hand-painted and individually numbered. The Balrog Legendary Scale bust is the perfect addition to your The Lord of the Rings collection.”

And don’t forget the fact that its an insanely large 22″ H (559mm) and will ship in early 2008.

The Balrog Legendary Scale Bust Discuss

Posted in Old Main News, Sideshow Collectibles

WETA Press Updates

Here with this week’s news headlines from the wonderful world of Weta

Halo3 makes $170 million in sales in 24 hours
Third Halo short released online [Link II]
Hellgate: London giveaway at upcoming Horror Convention in US
Weta’s WOW Winner revealed
Winner of F.M.O.M acronym contest announced
Sydney Convention Rayguns promotion
Further design work from Hercules revealed
Weta Limited in Australasia for convention season next month
Lord Cockswain online comic: Part Two now available
Indecipherable Rayguns testimonial from a sailor / pirate? You decide…
Registrations now open for NZ effects symposium

Posted in Old Main News, WETA Workshop

WETA Newsletter: September 2007

G’day from New Zealand, Weta supporters!

Well it’s been another busy month here at Weta HQ, with lots of exciting developments!

The Bungie team recently had a test drive of the Warthog we created for the Halo shorts, and we caught it on vid! Check out the hilarious carpark derby, complete with ‘commentary’!

Weta Bug recently revealed our work on two Radical Publishing projects, Hercules and Medieval. The design team had a great time coming up with illustrations for these very cool stories, and you can check out the inspiration behind these here.

The world of Dr Grordbort’s continues to expand. The testimonials page has had four new character additions and two web exclusive comics from the adventures of Lord Cockswain!

Dr Grordbort’s fans and artists around the globe have been busy getting involved, too. This month on the Weta Forums, we held a competition asking punters to send in their craziest, wackiest and most entertaining acronym for the F.M.O.M. Industries Wave Disrupter Gun. And the winners are…
1st Prize: Future Masters Of Mankind
Highly Commended: Formerly Mike’s of Massapequa and Flouroquantum Moleculular Oscillating Munitions.

Across the world, a Lord Cockswain lookalike was spotted in a faraway jungle, a new art piece from a Raygun inspired artist graced the web pages of WetaHolics and the ManMelter was named Most Stunning Raygun‘ in a fan poll dedicated to the weapon!

The web team recently revealed an exclusive preview of the upcoming game, Hellgate: London on WetaHolics – which teased and tantalised fans who are looking forward to the October 31 release date. Next month, we’ll be revealing an exciting new Hellgate: London competition … more details coming soon!

Meanwhile, we have released further details of our work on the second film from The Chronicles Of Narnia: Prince Caspian, with concept illustrations from the design files, and more details of exactly what armour, weapons and miniatures we have been working on.

Weta Co-Director Richard Taylor, designers Chris Guise and Daniel Falconer and Weta Bug headed down to the book launch of ‘Champ The Chopper’ earlier this month. It was a great success, with Author Rebekah Palmer wrapped at the feedback she received from kids and families alike.

Wellingtonians can now get their Raygun fix by checking out Pop Up, a very cool local gallery here in the Capital. They are our first Wellington stockist of the Dr Grordbort’s range – check out their site and online store here.

Talking of the Capital, the city has been abuzz with excitement as the WOW Wearable Art Awards™ take place. Richard Taylor was on hand to present the Weta Award to the entry that best fused film and costume. Congratulations from the Weta team to David Walker from Alaska, who designed a beautiful piece with wooden shutters, titled Prehistoric Princess.

That’s it from the Weta team for now – we’ll keep you posted!

If you have any feedback or suggestions, please feel free to contact our friendly Customer Services team on and drop us a line.

Weta Limited . Po Box 15-208 . Miramar . Wellington . New Zealand
Email: . Website:
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Posted in Old Special Reports, WETA Digital, WETA Workshop

Tana Umaga Stadium, Peter Jackson Film Academy

Chocolate Fish Cafe to Close? It’s time for Wellington to honour its home-town heroes says communications specialist Roger Ellis who is standing for the Wellington City Council in the Northern Ward. In recent years Wellington has produced some exceptional people. The whole world knows what Peter Jackson has almost single-handedly achieved – a major league movie industry right here in the suburbs of Wellington. He has received a theatre-load of awards from the good and the great throughout the world. “Yet to date the Wellington City Council has done little to honour this outstanding favourite son. The same could be said for Weta’s Richard Taylor.

Tana Umaga Stadium, Peter Jackson Film Academy

Posted in Old Main News, PJ's Other Films

Kristin Thompson & Rick Porras Booksigning TOMORROW

Kristin Thompson & Rick Porras Booksigning TOMORROW Kristin Thompson, author of The Frodo Franchise: The Lord of the Rings and Modern Hollywood, writes: I am going to be doing a signing event for The Frodo Franchise in New York on September 27. It starts at 7 pm at Barnes & Noble Upper West Side, 2289 Broadway at 82nd Street (MAP), tel. 212.362.8835. It should be an exciting evening, since Lord of the Rings co-producer Rick Porras will be joining me for a conversation before the signing! We’ll talk for perhaps half an hour and field questions for fifteen minutes or so.

‘The Frodo Franchise’ Booksigning in NY

Posted in LotR Books, Old Main News, Other Events

Mountain featured in ‘Lord of the Rings’ erupts

Mountain featured in ‘Lord of the Rings’ erupts WELLINGTON, New Zealand – New Zealand’s Mount Ruapehu erupted, spewing out ash and rock that injured one climber and forced around 50 people to be evacuated off the mountain, local media reported on Wednesday. The 10-minute eruption started at about 8.20 p.m. on Tuesday and sent a cloud of ash and dust to a height of 15,000 feet, Geological and Nuclear Sciences said.

Mountain featured in ‘Lord of the Rings’ erupts

Posted in Locations Sets, New Zealand, Old Main News