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Archive for April, 2012

TORn Message Boards Weekly Roundup – April 23, 2012

Welcome to our collection of TORn’s hottest topics for the past week. If you’ve fallen behind on what’s happening on the Message Boards, here’s a great way to catch the highlights. Or if you’re new to TORn and want to enjoy some great conversations, just follow the links to some of our most popular discussions. Watch this space as every weekend we will spotlight the most popular buzz on TORn’s Message Boards. Everyone is welcome, so come on in and join in the fun!


Posted in Hobbit Movie, Locations Sets, Lord of the Rings, LotR Movies, LotR Production, The Hobbit, Community

Hobbit to Preview at CinemaCon

Let’s hope that, for once, what happens in Vegas won’t stay in Vegas. Up to ten minutes of The Hobbit will be shown this Tuesday, both in 3D and 48 fps. From The Hollywood Reporter: The Hobbit will be one of many films that will be previewed at the theater owners confab, where for the first time in at least a decade, all of the major studios will present preview clips of their upcoming slate.

Millions of fans around the world are eagerly anticipating the prequel to Jackson’s The Lord of the Rings trilogy, which grossed an estimated $2.9 billion worldwide. Read More

Posted in Conventions, Events, Film Screenings, Hobbit Movie

Exclusive: ‘Hobbit’s’ Conan Stevens chats with TORn

Conan Stevens is an Australian actor and stuntman. After recent work on “A Game of Thrones,” the magic of the internet created a connection between and Stevens (cast as Bolg in the two-part adaptation of “The Hobbit,”) leading to the following interview. Currently TORn is embedded in the production, but that event and this interview are not related. Update us on everything you have going on at the moment.

Conan Stevens: Compared to the the 24 months prior, last year was a good year for me. To start with I managed to get onto “The Hobbit,” which is a story in itself. I missed the main round of auditions but managed to get a foot in the door at the last second – just as I came down with dysentery. So that was a combination of luck, tenacity and 25 years of preparation/wasting time with RPG’s the SCA, Martial Arts, Pro Wrestling, etc.

The afternoon that Peter announced on his Facebook page that I was to be in “The Hobbit” I called a casting agency that handled the”Spartacus” TV series auditions in Wellington, and it turns out the timing was again in my favour (more…)

Posted in Cast Q&A, Conan Stevens, Hobbit Book, Hobbit Cast News, Hobbit Movie, Hobbit Movie FAQ, The Hobbit

Theaters will adapt to show ‘Hobbit’ at 48fps by Dec.

Readers of this site, if not the known cinema universe, know that Peter Jackson‘s two-part adaptation of “The Hobbit,” has been filming at a technology-bending, 48 frame-per-second rate. But behind the appreciation of improving the cinematic experience, the question has lingered: Will anybody actually be able to see it at 48fps? Will it improve the 3D experience for viewers? Currently, no theater can show the film as it is being shot. The Hollywood Reporter writes that between now and December, a big change will take place. (Just a hunch, but the movie title will get fixed soon.)

The story begins:
Headline: Peter Jackson’s ‘The Hobbit’ Should Hit Theaters at 48-Per-Second Frame Rate

After Jackson and James Cameron championed higher frame rates as a solution to exhibition problems, projection manufacturers are working to support the move in time for the movie’s December 14, 2012 release date. The cinema technology industry is working to give moviegoers the opportunity to see “The Hobbit: An Unfinished Journey” in 3D projected at 48 frames per second when it hits theaters in December.
Read the whole story right here.

Posted in Uncategorized

“Obscura Day” at the Weta Cave – April 28

The Weta Cave, will be hosting a celebration of Obscura Day, an international celebration of unusual places, this Saturday, April 28. If you’re lucky enough to be in Wellington that day, this is a ‘must attend’ event! But, arrive early as space is first come, first served.

From our friends at the Weta Cave: The Weta Cave, an emporium of all things weird and wonderful, is proud to host Weta Artist Steven Saunders for a talk on the process behind Weta sculpture. Weta Workshop is the extraordinary visual design company best known for their work on the Lord of the Rings Trilogy, King Kong, The Chronicles of Narnia, and Avatar. The Weta Cave is Weta’s mini-museum, theaterette, and shop on a corner of the Workshop itself. Artist Steven Saunders will give a special Obscura Day talk taking you through the sculpting process behind Wetas new Gandalf sculpture. Not to be missed, this talk will provide unique insights into creative processes and into fantasy art from the sculptures perspective. Read More

Posted in Events, Other Events, WETA Cave

Kalamazoo, and Tolkien Too

Discussion board member Modtheow reminds us of this annual event where discussion board members N.E. Brigand, visualweasel and Indigo Istar will be among the presenters!

Every year about 3,000 medievalists descend on Western Michigan University in Kalamazoo, MI for the International Congress on Medieval Studies, but tucked into the over 600 sessions on every medieval topic imaginable, you can find 6 or 7 sessions on Tolkien, often referred to as “Tolkien at Kalamazoo.” You don’t have to be a medieval scholar to attend this conference, though I should say that it is meant to be a scholarly event — still, there’s lots of fun to be had, especially in the Friday night “Tolkien Unbound” entertainment, or the Saturday night dance, or in some of the gaming sessions, or dinner at Bilbo’s Restaurant. You can find information about the full conference here.


Posted in Events, Fellowship of the Ring, J.R.R. Tolkien, Lectures & Education, LotR Books, Return of the King, Silmarillion, The Two Towers, Tolkien

Tolkien + Dickens = New Fantasy Books for Children

Poet Michael Tolkien, the eldest grandson of the The Hobbit author, will write two novels based on stories his grandfather read to him as a child. Gerald Dickens, the great-great grandson of Charles, will narrate the audiobook versions. Both works are due to be released later this year. Publisher Thames River Press said the first book, Wish, was inspired by Florence Bone’s 1923 story, The Rose-Coloured Wish. It tells the story of two children who set out to use an evil enchanter’s wishing chain of stones to save their alpine valley, only to fall into trouble.

Read more about the books in the BBC article and more about Michael Tolkien at

Posted in Books Publications, J.R.R. Tolkien, Merchandise, Tolkien, Tolkien Family

New Tolkien gallery at Sarehole Mill in Hall Green

It May not be Middle Earth – but Birmingham’s tourism bosses are hoping to cash in on Hobbit-mania with a new attraction devoted to author JRR Tolkien. Interest in the fantasy writer, who was raised in the city between 1895 and 1911, is expected to soar when the film version of his famous book hits cinema screens later this year. Scenery and architecture from Birmingham was reflected in his stories, most notably Perrott’s Folly and Edgbaston Waterworks, which are thought to be The Two Towers from Lord of the Rings.

But Birmingham has previously been accused of not making the most of its Tolkien links. Now a new gallery has opened at Sarehole Mill in Hall Green highlighting the author’s strong ties with the city with a series of displays and a short film. And a new tourism strategy hopes to build on the attraction with more publicity, a dedicated website, bids for heritage funding and conservation of Tolkien-related sites and buildings. Read More

Posted in Events, Exhibits, Film Screenings, J.R.R. Tolkien, Tolkien

Hall of Fire tomorrow: Strange as News from Bree

This weekend in Hall of Fire we’re taking a quick diversion from our Fellowship of the Ring read-through to talk about a humble yet oddly important part of Middle-earth (and its peculiar inhabitants) — the village of Bree.

“Strange as News from Bree was still a saying in the Eastfarthing, descending from those days, when news from the North, South, and East could be heard in the inn…” — Fellowship of the Ring.

What sort of place is Bree? What are its inhabitants like? What conclusions can we draw about them from characters such as Barliman Butterbur, his employees Nob and Bob, as well as folk like Harry the Gatekeeper and Bill Ferny? In what ways are they similar — and different — to the folk of the Shire? Just how do the Big Folk and the Little Folk get on so well? And in the few Bree hobbits we meet, can we see any links in behaviour and culture to the Shirefolk? (more…)

Posted in Barliman News, Barlimans, Hall of Fire

A parody of ‘The Hobbit’ and banking?

Is banking funny? Using the bank collapse of Washington Mutual in 2008 is something of an epic banking story and a laid off trainer has produced a parody that folds in both “The Hobbit,” written by J.R.R. Tolkien and the state of banks. Reuters produced the following story:

Since T.S. Eliot’s brief career at Lloyds Bank of London, the connections between banking and literature have remained tenuous at best – especially when you narrow the focus to the genre of “banking-related fantasy novel parodies.”

But that did not stop Paul Erickson, a laid-off trainer of tellers and personal bankers for Washington Mutual, from taking an inspired crack at hilarity with “The Wobbit: A Parody.”

Read the rest right here.

Posted in Hobbit Book, Hobbit Movie, The Hobbit

Earth Day Comes to Middle-earth at

It seems since the official The Lord of the Rings store at had a redesign, we’ve been getting non-stop deals for Tolkien fans. The offers continue today as we learn of a new Earth Day promotion. is offering 20% LOTR items including Middle-earth canvases, Arwen’s Pendant, framed film cells, etc, etc. If you were looking for an excuse to build your collection, now’s the time! [ Earth Day Promo] [LOTR Shirts] [Official Hobbit Shirt]

Posted in Clothing, Hobbit Cast News, Hobbit Movie, Lord of the Rings, LotR Cast News, LotR Movies, Shop, The Hobbit

Luke Evans interviewed on

Luke Evans is in the midst of filming the longest block he is involved in with The Hobbit shoot, and he just celebrated his birthday this past weekend. And yet, he still found time to phone in an interview with in anticipation of the release of The Raven next week. The snippet linked here is actually just for the Hobbit bits, including some insight into filming in 48FPS. The full article will be posted in a few days time, so enjoy the preview.

Luke Evans talks The Hobbit.


Posted in Cast Q&A, Hobbit Cast News, Hobbit Movie, Hobbit Movie FAQ, Luke Evans, The Hobbit