Last Fall, John Rhys-Davies and Ryan Gage (aka Gimli and Alfrid) were in Scotland, working on a movie together. Today TORn has an exclusive first peek at a press release, and some fabulous images from the upcoming film, Kingslayer.

The press release tells us:

Kingslayer is a historical action film based on the real life of Richard the Lionheart. Days away from his coronation, a secret meeting with the woman he loves, turns into a life and death fight for survival. As hired mercenaries attack, Chaplain Anselm who has gone looking for the young prince, tries to uncover who is behind the plot and prevent civil war.

The feature penned and directed by BAFTA-award winner Stuart Brennan, has Golden Globe winning Producer Gareth Wiley working alongside him, best known for his four movies with Woody Allen, including MatchPoint and Vicky, Christina, Barcelona. Stanley Kubrick’s Director of Photography is also on board, the Emmy Nominated Doug Milsome BSC, ASC (Full Metal Jacket, Robin Hood Prince of Thieves).

An equally impressive cast have also signed up including Carolina Carlsson (Dragonheart: Vengeance, The Young Pope), Mark Wake (The Necromancer), David Hayman (Fisherman’s Friends), Ian Hanmore (Game of Thrones) and Mark Springer (Shadow & Bone).

John Rhys-Davies plays the role of one of the medieval era’s most famous knights; William Marshal. A man who opposed Richard, until he became King, and then was welcomed as a trusted adviser for keeping his word and not switching sides in the face of defeat, like so many did. Brennan takes the role of Prince Richard and Ryan Gage that of Chaplain Anselm.

Production companies Stronghold and Phoenix Wiley are behind the production. The film shot on location at Dunskey Estate in Stranraer, Scotland and at Crichton Memorial Church in Dumfries during September and October of 2020. This is the fifth feature film produced by Stronghold to have filmed in Scotland.

Stronghold Press Release

Tune in to TORn Tuesday TONIGHT for a look at all of the exclusive images! Here’s one of Rhys-Davies in character, to whet your appetite:

Last year during Comic-Con at Home our friends at Weta Workshop launched the Classic Series. They’ve now added the first statue from The Hobbit Trilogy with a very requested version of this character. Who is the character? None other than Galadriel herself. This stunning version of Galadriel comes from the White Council sequence during The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey. Fans can pre-order Galadriel right now for $349, with her expected to ship sometime during September of this year.

Beautiful Galadriel statue from the Classic Series from Weta

We’re excited to bring you an EXCLUSIVE first look at the new Gandalf the Grey Crown Series figure by the awesome folks at Asmus Toys.

Right now we don’t have any information on price, but you can see from these fantastic shots that this figure is going to be amazing. It looks like the likeness to Sir Ian McKellen’s wizard is pretty darn spot on, and the goodies you get with him are super detailed. We hope you enjoy these shots; when we get all the information on Gandalf we will pass it on. We do not want you to miss a chance to add this amazing figure to your collection!

The incredible 'Fantasy Film' section in WETA's 'Unleashed'
This is the Fantasy film section. Photo by Jason Dorday/Stuff

On December 15, 2020, WETA Workshop opened up Unleashed, a hybrid entertainment experience in Auckland that is part film set and part creative workshop. This project started as an idea about 3 years ago, but it was 18 months ago when they landed on the concept that would become Unleashed – A Fantastical Film FX Experience. WETA took over an entire floor at the SkyCity entertainment precinct in Auckland, at the foot of the Sky Tower. This finally gives WETA the space to grow and flesh out what they began with the WETA Cave and the Window on the Workshop experience they have in Wellington. 

The Health and Safety officer named Jeff, who greets visitors to the attraction - an otherworldly looking character.
Jeff, Health and Safety officer Photo by Sylvie Whinray

Upon entering, guests are greeted by Jeff, head of security and health and safety; who happens to be an animatronic character, voiced by Mark Hadlow, with 40 points of articulation. Guests will go on a 90-minute immersive journey, through several rooms that aren’t always what they appear to be. Jeff will get you started on your adventure to learn about the creation of three original films in the Fantasy, Horror and Science Fiction genres. Each room will offer hands-on, interactive activities, such as sculpting, making armor, or tracing creatures. The concept is to show the creative process involved in filmmaking from the beginning through the final stages before release, and leave the guests inspired to take that creativity home with them.

Some sculpture work on display
Photo by Jason Dorday/Stuff

In addition to being a fun day tour experience for movie fans and tourists, this facility is big enough to be an event venue, a themed event venue at that: from small groups of 15 or more for things like Birthday or Anniversary parties, all the way up to large corporate or professional groups. There is room for receptions up to 700 people, or banquets of 300. And to add atmosphere, you can include an SFX make-up demo, hands-on workshops, guest speakers, and Middle-earth themed feasts. Makes one wonder if they will have space for some 20th anniversary partying next December…?

For details on where to find WETA Workshop Unleashed and all of their various tours and venue options, simply head over to WETA Workshop Unleashed

An incredible display at WETA Workshop Unleashed
Photo by Jason Dorday/Stuff

Here we are, at the final day of TORn’s Advent Calendar. We hope you’ve enjoyed our 24 days of posts: exploring Amazon’s new cast announcements, day dreaming about visiting New Zealand, taking a closer look at a seasonally appropriate work of the Professor’s, and even releasing some merchandise, to bring hope for the coming year!

It just remains for us to wish you and yours a Merry Christmas. We know that lots of people are alone this year, and that the holiday season will be very different for many. You may feel that you are ‘the furthest away from home you’ve ever been’; but we hope that you always find yourself at home in Middle-earth, in the pages of Tolkien’s books, in Peter Jackson’s movies, and here at TheOneRing.net. We are a Fellowship of Fans; one big, happy, geeky family.

For something extra special to end our Advent Calendar, a few actor members of our family wanted to send greetings to you all. These three charming dwarven fellows are sending love to everyone.

Continue reading “Christmas greetings! – from some familiar faces.”

Wrapping up our our series on Amazon’s new cast members is the lovely Sara Zwangobani. Sara is an Australian actress who is best-known for her roles in a number of Australian TV series and soap operas. From recurring roles to guest appearances, Sara has appeared in Monarch Cove, Love My Way, and Don’t Stop me Now, among others.

Sara Zwangobani in The Lord of the Rings TV Series on Amazon Prime
Sara Zwangobani

Sara also has a number of stage roles under her belt, one of the most interesting of which included playing a female Marc Antony in Bell Shakespeare’s production of Julius Caesar in 2018, which toured around Australia. She also has a Lord of the Rings connection, having played the part of Rosetta in Sydney Theatre Company’s A Streetcar Named Desire in 2009, which featured Cate Blanchett as Blanche DuBois.  

Actor Sara Zwangobani, surrounded by masked cast members, as Marc Antony in Julius Caesar.
Sara Zwangobani as Marc Antony

Given her striking good looks, Sara could be cast in any number of roles in the new Amazon series. A Numenorean queen, or perhaps an Elf of Eregion during the time of the making of the Rings of Power? No matter the region and people of Middle-earth she becomes a part of, Sara is a perfect addition to the Amazon TV series cast.

Editor Note: Join TheOneRing.net as we focus on the recent cast member announcements for Amazon TV’s The Lord of the Rings inspired TV series. Throughout the month, and as part of our Tolkien Advent Calendar celebration, we will be taking a deep-dive into their previous work, relating that to the world of J.R.R. Tolkien. Today’s calendar is below!

Day 18 of TheOneRing.net's Advent Calendar 2020
Day 18 of TheOneRing.net’s Advent Calendar 2020