Lord of the Rings
Dec. 12, 2013 | 1:17 p.m.
And now, Sir Ian McKellen would like to make a clarification with regard to one of the most famous lines uttered by his wise wizard Gandalf in Peter Jackson’s “Lord of the Rings” films. “You know, ‘You shall not pass’ isn’t in the book at all,” the legendary English actor pointed out, referring to the fantastic literature of J.R.R. Tolkien. “‘You cannot pass’ is what Tolkien wrote. We got it wrong.” The man who Peter Jackson dubbed “the guardian of Tolkien” held forth on a wide range of subjects earlier this week at a special Hero Complex screening of the new fantasy “The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug,” the second installment in Jackson’s latest trilogy of films set in Middle-earth. Arriving in theaters Friday, “The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug” sees Bilbo Baggins (Martin Freeman) continue on his journey to assist […]
Dec. 10, 2013 | 2:25 p.m.
First he was spending time with Loki actor Tom Hiddleston. Now, Cookie Monster’s starring in a new “Sesame Street” “Lord of the Rings” parody that arrives just in time to coincide with the release of filmmaker Peter Jackson’s latest adventure based on the writings of author J.R.R. Tolkien, “The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug,” due in theaters Friday. Jackson’s new fantasy blockbuster centers largely on the middle section of Tolkien’s landmark 1937 children’s novel, but for its latest skit spoofing pop culture, the “Sesame Street” masterminds returned to his previous Tolkien trilogy, the “Lord of the Rings,” for ideas for “Lord of the Crumbs.” Here, Cookie Monster is seeking the long-lost recipe for the “one dessert to rule them all” — chocolate chip cookies, naturally — and with the help of a Galadriel-inspired guide, he attempts to remember how to […]
Dec. 10, 2013 | 8:00 a.m.
Charting a course through Middle-earth can be nearly as taxing as surviving an international press tour for an end-of-year blockbuster. But as Peter Jackson posed on a giant chair flown in from New Zealand from the set of “The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug,” he appeared none the worse for wear. Although the writer-director’s salt-and-pepper curls fell at slightly unruly angles, and his white dress shirt looked more comfortably lived in than freshly pressed, Jackson himself was in good humor. His newest film based on the writings of J.R.R. Tolkien, which opens in theaters Friday, already had won praise from a chain of admirers, many of whom compared its jovial spirit to the high-water mark of Jackson’s career, his epic “Lord of the Rings” trilogy. “Quite a few people are saying that,” Jackson said last week, sipping tea at a […]
Dec. 03, 2013 | 1:08 p.m.
Middle-Earth’s denizens journeyed to Hollywood on Monday night for the world premiere of “The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug,” the second of Peter Jackson’s three films based on J.R.R. Tolkien’s 1937 novel, “The Hobbit.” The film’s stars hit the shrub- and leaf-adorned black carpet in front of the Dolby Theater in Hollywood to fête the latest adaptation of the mystical realm where hobbits, dwarves, elves, orcs and goblins dwell. The carpet was designed to echo the sylvan realm of Mirkwood, which plays an important role in the new film, set to open in theaters Dec. 13. Dwarf-prince Thorin Oakenshield (Richard Armitage) and his company, which includes Bilbo Baggins (Martin Freeman), travel through the forest on the next leg of their quest to reclaim Erebor, the treasure-filled city under the Lonely Mountain that was usurped from Thorin’s ancestors by the dragon […]
Dec. 10, 2012 | 10:15 a.m.
One of the most memorable dwarfs in “The Hobbit” is Bombur, described by J.R.R. Tolkien as “immensely fat and heavy.” The role was big in more ways than one for Stephen Hunter, the Sydney-based actor who brings the character to life in “The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey,” which opens in theaters Friday. The Peter Jackson-directed trilogy is the first major feature film for Hunter, whose previous work includes parts in Australian television series. Hero Complex spoke with Hunter about landing the role, working with the brotherhood of dwarfs and grappling with his character’s enormous girth. HC: Can you tell us a little bit about auditioning? How did you get the role? SH: I actually auditioned for “The Lord of the Rings” right at the very start. … I just did a general audition a long time ago, and it was […]
Dec. 05, 2012 | 7:00 a.m.
Few people know Middle-earth better than Dan Hennah, the production designer tasked with translating J.R.R. Tolkien’s words and director Peter Jackson’s vision to the big screen for “The Hobbit” trilogy. Hennah has been working on the film for three years, but it’s not his first visit to the land of dwarfs, elves, hobbits and Orcs. Hennah served as art director for “The Lord of the Rings” trilogy and won the art direction and set decoration Academy Award for “The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King” along with Grant Major and Alan Lee in 2004. Hero Complex spoke with Hennah about his return to Tolkien’s world, what’s different in “The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey” and the challenges of bringing to life new corners of Middle-earth. HC: Can you start by explaining what your job entails? Production design must […]
Dec. 04, 2012 | 8:02 a.m.
“The Hobbit” may be one of J. R. R. Tolkien’s simpler tales, but creating 13 individual yet cohesive hairstyles (and beard-styles) for the dwarfs in “The Hobbit” was no simple task. That challenge fell to makeup and hair designer Peter King, who won an Oscar with Richard Taylor for “The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King.” King, who has worked on all of Peter Jackson’s films since “The Lord of the Rings,” including “King Kong” and “The Lovely Bones,” spoke with Hero Complex about designing the hairstyles for ”The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey,” opening in theaters Dec. 14. HC: What’s it been like to return to Middle-earth after all this time? PK: Like we’ve never been away. We had a break of what, eight, nine years and a few other films in between, but it was great. Like going back to see an […]
Nov. 26, 2012 | 10:42 a.m.
Peter Jackson’s “The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey” will have its world premiere Tuesday — and Hero Complex will take you there with a live stream of the event beginning at 6:50 p.m. PST. Ian McKellen, Martin Freeman, Richard Armitage, Cate Blanchett, Orlando Bloom, Jed Brophy, Adam Brown, John Callen, Luke Evans, Stephen Fry, Ryan Gage, Mark Hadlow, Ian Holm, Stephen Hunter, William Kircher, Christopher Lee, Lee Pace, Andy Serkis, Hugo Weaving, Elijah Wood and more are expected to walk the red carpet. Neil Finn will also perform at the event in a set that will include ”Song of the Lonely Mountain” from the film’s soundtrack. Since those first notes were sung by Thorin Oakenshield and his dwarf companions in the debut trailers late last year, fans of J.R.R. Tolkein’s tome have waited to see Freeman and company put their stamp on the […]
Nov. 13, 2012 | 5:00 a.m.
Sauron has never been so cute. “Lego The Lord of the Rings” — out today for Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, Nintendo Wii and PC following a previous release on Nintendo and PlayStation’s handheld consoles — applies the Lego franchise’s trademark charm and humor to J.R.R. Tolkien’s Middle-earth. The game features the voice acting from Peter Jackson’s “Lord of the Rings” trilogy and follows the major events from all three installments, including the Battle of Helm’s Deep and Frodo and Sam’s journey to Mount Doom to destroy the One Ring. The game emphasizes teamwork, and players can shoot arrows as elven cutie Legolas, sword fight as the ranger and king-to-be Aragorn, and destroy obstacles as mighty dwarf Gimli, among other characters. Hero Complex caught up with Nick Ricks, executive producer at TT Games, about bringing Tolkien’s hobbits, dwarves and elves to […]
Nov. 02, 2012 | 3:14 p.m.
Peter Jackson has a message for J.R.R Tolkien: I can’t quit you. Nearly a decade after the New Zealand filmmaker concluded his massively successful “Lord of the Rings” trilogy — a string of films that grossed more than $2.9 billion worldwide, capped with a best picture Oscar for 2003′s “The Return of the King” — Jackson is set to launch yet another three-film series from the fantasy novelist’s other famous tome, “The Hobbit.” Unlike his previous trifecta, Jackson wasn’t the original filmmaker behind the “Hobbit” films (Guillermo del Toro was initially set to direct, with Jackson producing), and there were supposed to be two, not three, “Hobbit” productions. Warner Bros. executives were so excited after seeing a rough cut of Dec. 14′s “The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey” that they ordered one more movie, forcing Jackson to reassemble his cast and […]