It’s hard to believe a week has passed already since HobbitCon Vier in Germany. Staffers deej and greendragon were delighted to be there, meeting fellow fans and sharing the fun. As promised, here are some tales of the weekend for those of you who couldn’t be there – or who were there and just want to look back!
HobbitCon was held in the Hotel Maritim in Bonn, April 1-3. Folks started arriving on the Wednesday before, and there was an atmosphere of anticipation as more and more people, often laden with suitcases full of costumes, showed up to be reunited with friends.
On Friday the con officially got underway, and the big ‘kick off’ was the Opening Ceremony that evening. All the guests were invited on stage – TORn’s staff had no idea they would have to speak, but greendragon dusted off her German to say a few words! Of course the crowd was really waiting to see the guest actors; in attendance this year were Mark Atkin, Dallas Barnett, John Bell, Billy Boyd, Jed Brophy, Sadwyn Brophy, Adam Brown, John Callen, Lori Dungey, Ryan Gage, Mark Hadlow, Stephen Hunter,William Kircher, Craig Parker and John Tui. Mark Ferguson was a seemingly indefatigable host for the weekend! (You can read full details of all the guests at HobbitCon’s website, here.)
There were many talks and happenings over the course of the three days; deej and greendragon regretted that their own schedule meant they couldn’t make it along to see all the fun. There was a stunning art show, an Elvish choir, and of course many Q&A sessions with the cast. TORn gave two talks – one ‘Behind the Scenes of The One Last Party’, and one looking back on the last 18 years and the epic journey this fandom has been on. Both seemed well received – especially when we showed video clips of Luke Evans, Richard Armitage, Lee Pace and others!
Also attending HobbitCon was Frank Victoria, an artist who had worked on designs for Weta, both during Guillermo del Toro’s time as director of The Hobbit movies, and then when Peter Jackson had stepped into that role. His panels were fascinating; a real insight into the behind the scenes work and the vision of the creative team.
As ever, a highlight of the convention for most people was meeting old friends and making new ones. The hotel was one big party each night, as everyone celebrated together! deej and greendragon were delighted to meet so many fellow fans who came by TORn’s table to say hello. We try very hard here at TheOneRing.net to be a worldwide fan site; of course our website is in English, but we do try to report news and happenings from all over the world, and to host events and contests, whenever possible, that are open worldwide. So it was very gratifying to meet fans from Europe and beyond, who had kind words to say about TORn – and even many folks who had been to The One Last Party or to our pub party in London before The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies premiere. We hope we may have enticed a few new folks to join our merry throng here, too!
The other highlight of any such gathering is the amazing costuming – and we were not disappointed. Astonishingly brilliant costumes were on display – Middle-earth fans really are the most extraordinary creatures! The judges at the costume contest must have had a very hard time, picking winners.
We can’t report much on what the actors were up to all weekend, as our paths mostly only crossed with theirs in the bar in the evening! But they seemed to be enjoying themselves, and keeping the fans happy with many autographs, photo ops, and fun tales at their panels! Mark Ferguson, Craig Parker and Lori Dungey led several improv/comedy hours, which were very popular.
And then all too soon, it was time for the closing ceremony. As HobbitCon Vier is the very last of these conventions, there weren’t many dry eyes as the guests assembled on the stage once more, just a couple of days after they’d gathered there to say hello. The dwarf actors beautifully sang ‘Far Over the Misty Mountains Cold’, and then Billy Boyd brought out his guitar. It seemed the perfect ending – and as he sang ‘The Last Goodbye’, the theatre was filled with waving glow sticks and tearful fans.
It was a beautiful way to say goodbye to HobbitCon – though later that night, attendees were back in the bar partying. They clearly didn’t want the fun to be over – and as we all know, the road goes ever on….
Thanks to all who came to TORn’s panels or who came to the table to say hello – it was wonderful to spend time with you all! Please do share your tales and images of the weekend in the comments below, or on our Facebook page. Here’s to our next merry meeting – wherever that may be! Tschüss, HobbitCon!