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Archive for March, 2012

Smaug the Golden?

Remember The Hobbit production vlog #2 that came out back in July 2011?

Well, we’ve watched it again (and recommend you do too), especially the bit between 2:05 and 2:25, where it isn’t hard to spot Peter Jackson and his crew wearing a “200 Days To Go” sweatshirt. What is hard to spot though is the logo on the front of that sweatshirt… until now.

Our Dwarves at TORn who spend their time mining the interwebs for gems of information came across an image of the hoodie that reveals the logo is none other than Smaug the Golden.

Our staffers then got down to discussing it, and some said Yes, and some said No. Some said it couldn’t be the real design for Smaug, and some said it only offered clues to what the real Smaug will look like. One staffer called Greendragon was (aptly!) drawn to this image more than the others and said it looked very much like “a John Howe Smaug“. Finally, the end of it was to put the image out for your consideration and see what you thought of it.

So, what do you think? Real or not? Mildly interesting or surprisingly faithful? Sound off on our message boards.

Posted in Characters, Crew News, Director news, Hobbit Movie, John Howe, Peter Jackson, Production, The Hobbit

Goodies to come from Weta Workshop?

A friendly spy let us know some exciting news!  As seen on a book supplier’s ordering site –  listings for a pair of Hobbit movie themed books by Weta Workshop!

The first, titled “The Hobbit Chronicles: An Unexpected Journey”, is a hardcover expected to retail at $39.99(USD).  It’s listed as coming out on November 6th, 2012.  Presumably this will be some kind of “making of/behind the scenes” book for the first film.

The second book has a publication date of October 15th, 2013 – a long time to wait for this one!  Titled “The Hobbit Location Guide: Where the Journey Begins”, it is a trade paperback with an anticipated price of 14.99(USD).   It seems likely that Ian Brodie, author of the “Lord of the Rings Location Guidebook”, would be involved with this one.  This will come in handy if you’re planning a pilgrimage to Middle-earth, aka New Zealand!

Neither appears to be available for the public to pre-order just yet; but as we make our way through this year of ‘Hobbit Eve’, the good stuff just keeps coming and the anticipation just keeps building!

Posted in Books, Books Publications, Hobbit Movie, Merchandise, Rumors Spy News, Shop, The Hobbit, WETA Workshop

Middle-earth March Madness 2012 – The Final Four!

Middle-earth March Madness is down to the Final Four! Coming out of the Rankin/Bass Division, battered and bruised by some close calls, is none other than everyone’s favorite wizard, Gandalf! From the Ralph Bakshi Division, with a final match that was not nearly as close as one might expect, is Aragorn! From the Tolkien Family Division is the solid number one seed Legolas, coming hot off his latest victory over the Ringbearer himself, Frodo. Last, but certainly not least, out of the Peter Jackson Division, is tournament dark horse, and the only remaining Hobbit…Samwise Gamgee! Voting in for the Final Four will last until April 1st at 6pm ET. Check out the results from the previous rounds: Round 1, Round 2, Round 3.

Follow after the break to place your vote and see the latest version of the bracket. (Download) Good luck to all of our competitors!


Posted in Events, Fans, Headlines, Hobbit Movie, Lord of the Rings, LotR Books, LotR Movies, Other Events, The Hobbit, Announcements, Community, Tolkien

Film Friday: ‘Wrath of the Titans’ surprises

Lets make one thing clear up front: Don’t go to the theater expecting too much from “Wrath of the Titans.” Don’t expect to be emotionally invested or deeply moved or to have your intellect challenged or to be dazzled by dialog or performances; none of those things will happen.

And, even the best special effects films can leave viewers feeling like they have been pick-pocketed by bright lights and huge databases of computers generating artificial pixels of men and monsters like most of the films with “Transformers,” somewhere in the title. (more…)

Posted in Film Friday

BBC asks ‘Why are fantasy accents British?’

We have asked in delightful geeky conversations, and you have too: “Why are fantasy accents British?” In fact, at a recent TORn staff meeting at John Carter, that very topic came up. Well, bless the BBC and writer Brian Wheeler for taking the conversation to the next level and checking with some experts and for including LOTR and The Hobbit in the discussion. You can read it right here. Thanks to spy Elessar (but not the TORn staffer of the same name) for the tip.

Posted in Hobbit Movie, Lord of the Rings, LotR Movies, The Hobbit

Unique, new commentary on LOTR movie trilogy

A close relative of TheOneRing’s own Barliman’s chat room concept of group commentary while watching a film, has completed thoughts on the entire LOTR trilogy. The site is free and interesting an the folks commenting know film but most importantly, they know story. The site leads off its “about” portion of the website with the following:
“Down in Front is a commentary podcast with a difference – all of the members of the Down in Front family are, in some way, involved in the film industry and work on movies for a living. Sometimes we even worked on the movies we run commentary on. Sometimes we’re not proud of it.”

They have done many more films than these, but deserve a tip of the hat for taking on this trilogy (although we confess we have only listened to snippets so far but believe they are certainly entitled to their opinions, whatever they are!) You can either watch the film and synch their commentary or listen to it on its own. Curious? Take a look right here to check out their work. (We like the idea so much, who knows, we might even borrow it and lock some staff in a room sometime during a trilogy marathon for a TORn staff commentary.) Thanks to spy rtambree for the notice.

Posted in Fans, Lord of the Rings, LotR Movies

15K tweeters follow TORn, t-shirt follows reached a milestone yesterday when the 15,000th soul signed up to follow the team on Twitter. To celebrate the mark, is sending that person a shirt from the deep Dwarven mines where the website is headquartered. TORn promoted the offer on the official account with 14,999 already tagging along but warned that the only shirts currently available were small. Not only does the winner wear a small shirt, it says in her Twitter profile that she is obsessed with shirts! And it turns out she uses the our homepage regularly The website you are currently reading, Founded in 1999 by a group of like-minded Tolkien fans, carries the moniker “Forged by and for fans of J.R.R. Tolkien,” which remains true of the all-volunteer staff and not-for-profit site. Here we have a thriving message board and live chat communities and the daily news. You can also participate and support us on Facebook with over 50,000 members or on the aforementioned Twitter account. And as always, you can always send news tips to Look for us at conventions around the U.S. including C2E2 in Chicago in April and the San Diego Comic-Con in July. And of course, we have big things planned for 2012 and 2013 as we look forward to the big-screen adaptation of The Hobbit, a book that we celebrating in its 75th year of publication (#Hobbit on Twitter!) We would be remiss not to thank the other 14,999 Twitter supporters and the legion of readers and friends (Facebook and otherwise) who have bolstered the community since 1999. Thanks!

Posted in Barlimans, Conventions, Fans, Hobbit Book, Hobbit Movie, The Hobbit, Community, Uncategorized

TORn TUESDAY Reveals Details & Secrets of PJ’s Video Diary!

Join us LIVE at 5pm PDT tonight as TORn TUESDAY host Clifford Broadway, aka Quickbeam, and producer Justin Sewell join forces to explore in-depth the (mostly) revealing video production diaries that have been posted by Peter Jackson as THE HOBBIT continues apace! There’s more than meets the eye as we inspect freeze frames and see the nitty-gritty of what PJ is up to! Today’s live webcast launches at 5:00pm PDT — There’s a built-in Barliman’s chat room or come in via Skype in’s Stickam page. Check out the broadcast in our LIVE Event section right here every week! [LIVE Event Area] (See All Times)

Posted in Barlimans, ComicCon, Conventions, Crew News, Director news, Events, Fans, Green Books, Hobbit Book, Hobbit Cast News, Hobbit Movie, Locations Sets, Oscar Parties, Out on a Limb, Peter Jackson, Production, The Hobbit, Announcements, TORn TUESDAYS Live!

Hall of Fire this weekend: FoTR — Book 1, Chapter 2

This weekend, Saturday March 31 at 6.00pm EDT, Hall of Fire returns to our chapter-by-chapter read-through and discussion of Fellowship of The Ring.

“I wish it need not have happened in my time.”

FoTR Book 1, Chapter 2: The Shadow of the Past

Frodo Baggins is the new master of Bag End. And, to the enduring curiosity of his fellow-Hobbits, over the next 17 years he proves as “well-preserved” and eccentric — and as much of topic of gossip — as Bilbo ever was. (more…)

Posted in Barliman News, Barlimans, Hall of Fire

Middle-earth March Madness 2012 – Round 3!

We’ve reached the Elite Eight in our inaugural Middle-earth March Madness tournament! The match-ups in the second round proved to be quite historic, but none more than the Rankin/Bass Division. The top seed (1)Gandalf, narrowly won by a single vote. Yes, one vote out of 19,405 is all that defeated the great (4)Feanor! Proving once again that even the smallest of things can make a difference. In the other match-up, (6)Smaug lost to (2)Galadriel by only 100 votes in a competition that saw 20,616 total votes! The rest of the divisions were competitive, but did come down to less than 100 votes. (see all results here) Ultimately we’ve ended up with the number 1 and number 2 seeded competitors facing off in the Elite Eight!

(1)Gandalf will take on (2)Galadriel in a battle of characters that will be returning to the screen in the upcoming ‘Hobbit‘ films! In the Ralph Bakshi Division, (1)Bilbo Baggins will test his muster against a crowd-favorite (2)Aragorn. In the Tolkien Family Division, heavily favored heart-throb (1)Legolas will face off against the hardened savior of Middle-earth (2)Frodo Baggins. The Peter Jackson Division’s final competition comes served with a bit of irony. Peter’s division is the only one to have a competitor that was not represented on-screen in The Lord of the Rings trilogy. The match-up finds the top-seeded (1)Glorfindel versus a heavy crowd favorite (2)Samwise Gamgee.

Follow after the break to place your vote and see the latest version of the bracket. (download) Voting will remain open until March 30th at Noon ET. You may vote as often as you like, so please share with your friends and family.


Posted in Events, Fans, Headlines, Hobbit Movie, Lord of the Rings, LotR Books, LotR Movies, Other Events, The Hobbit, Announcements, Community, Tolkien

Collecting The Precious – Weta Workshop’s Uruk-hai General’s Helm

Weta Workshop’s first helm in the relaunch of the 1:4 helm series is none other than the Uruk-hai General’s Helm. This is one of Weta Workshop’s helms, that if you have seen the Weta Collector’s Guide book, was under consideration before the line ended several years ago. Now, fans get a chance to get going again on collecting these awesome collectibles. Shipping for the Uruk-hai General’s Helm will not be until quarter three of this year allowing you time to make sure you have your fifty dollars ready. Make sure you order now though because at a 500 piece edition size this is sure to go fast. [Click Here]

Posted in Collectibles, LotR Movies, Merchandise, Movie Fellowship of the Ring, Movie Return of the King, Movie The Two Towers, Shop, Weta Collectibles, WETA Workshop

Leather worker finishes creating clothing and armour for The Hobbit.

From The Star:

Just back from a ‘top secret’ assignment with Wellington Weta Workshops, Fiona Thomson is happy to be back behind her work bench in her Glenview shop.

The In Hide Leatherworks owner is still excited at being part of the production of The Hobbit movie but everything she knows about the film and its wardrobe must be a secret till the official release in December.

All she will say about her four months stint in Wellywood is that she was involved in creating clothing and armour.

More after the break…


Posted in Costume Design, Hobbit Movie, LotR Production, Miscellaneous, Production, Rumors Spy News