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The One Ring Forums: Tolkien Topics: Movie Discussion: The Hobbit:
Del Toro's Smaug
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Hellmistress
Lorien


Feb 1 2011, 8:28pm

Post #176 of 246 (6883 views)
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Okay ... [In reply to] Can't Post

... a few links.

The Futhark. This is the Elder Futhark, and is the one in commonest use. It can be used retrograde too, so it can be read left to right or vice versa. Makes it a pain trying to translate inscriptions, but luckily I don't have to do that as I don't speak a word of Old Norse. Wink This is a Wiki page, but it's pretty accurate for all that.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Elder_Futhark

The Völuspá for those who haven't read it.

http://cybersamurai.net/...eticEdda/Voluspo.htm

This is how the name Thorin would have appeared - with the 'thorn' rune at the beginning. Ţorinn.

Here's a link that looks as though they possibly got the info from some of the same books I did. It's a bit basic (and I'm not into all of this artsy-fartsy magik stuff), but fairly well illustrated.

http://www.cassandraeason.com/making_runes.htm

For further reading:

The Larousse Encyclopedia of Mythology

Page, R.I., Reading the Past: Runes (London: British Museum Publications, 1987)

Sykes, Egerton, Everyman's Dictionary of Non-Classical Mythology (London: Dent & Sons Ltd., 1962)

Brondsted, Johannes, The Vikings (London, Penguin Books Ltd., 1983)

Johnson, Paul, Runic Inscriptions in Great Britain (Powys, Wales: Wooden Books Ltd., 1999)

Page's book is a blast. He's the Elrington and Bosworth Professor of Anglo-Saxon at the Univesity of Cambridge and Fellow and Librarian of Corpus Christi College. He's a renowned expert on English and Norse runes as well as an authority on early English language and society, so his work fits well with Tolkien's world. A great book and well worth a purchase if you ever go to the British Museum. He points out that the rune and the name of the rune were intimately connected. For example, to write the word 'man' it was quicker to simply draw the 'm' rune. So therefore it is inherent that Thorin has the word 'thorn' in his name. Simple. I still think G was having fun, but still, it's an interesting subject.

I would also recommend especially the Larousse, even if only for the illustrations, which are awesome. The description of Scandinavian and Slavic mythology is especially fine.

HM


(This post was edited by Hellmistress on Feb 1 2011, 8:34pm)


Eowyn of Penns Woods
Valinor


Feb 1 2011, 8:31pm

Post #177 of 246 (6880 views)
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And [In reply to] Can't Post

as one who has no desire to discuss anything Hobbit-related in such an atmosphere, the Admins have my thanks! If I hadn't already lost nearly all enthusiasm for this project, this kind of thread would've done it. :/

**********************************


NARF
NABOUF
Not a TORns*b!
Certified Curmudgeon


Ainu Laire
Tol Eressea


Feb 1 2011, 8:34pm

Post #178 of 246 (6874 views)
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That is true, but... [In reply to] Can't Post

But on the same token, I have received critique from friends about artistic ideas before they were made and what were only sketches, and when I choose to, I got critique on those from wider audiences on forum boards.

In the same way one can critique ideas, even just the words and sketches of what was described in a news article. We assume that the writer was writing it accurately, which may be a wrong assumption to make; I do not know the repute of the writer.

My LiveJournal ~ My artwork and photography

NARF since age 8, when I refused to read the Hobbit because the cover looked boring and icky.


Pittsmen
Rivendell


Feb 1 2011, 8:39pm

Post #179 of 246 (6896 views)
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Critique the art not the artist. [In reply to] Can't Post

Thats what I should have said.

Can someone please join me in a round of kumbaya?

I wonder which way the battle axe was supposed to fly?

Assuming the main body, head, and wings were in front and the long thing snake like body turning into a sharp tail at the end, might be a formidable sight as it screamed over head in lake town.

What GDT was talking about is how the animal looked in silhouette.

Here are some silhouettes of more Wyrm/Snake like dragons, vs. More mammalian dense body dragons.

Wyrm?:
http://www.wordans.com/...8_340.jpg?1258088400 A little tribal, but no beefy arms, long slender body.

http://cdn4.xiha.fi/...761482c26403a501.jpg This one has more body, however the tail is elongated far past the body.

http://vaultmedia.ign.com/...ragon-silhouette.gif hunched over is not a very regal smaug like stance.

http://vaultmedia.ign.com/...ragon-silhouette.gif

http://images1.wikia.nocookie.net/...ragon_(overhead).png To get an idea of the "Battle Axe Idea" If you make this dragon much larger, with a longer tail, it would look like a batttle axe from silhouette


http://images3.wikia.nocookie.net/...ragon_(overhead).png

Now again we are trying to see just the silhouette the animal casts. These last two pictures start to shed light on what a battle axe shaped dragon might look like.

Now for beefy mammalian dragons:

http://www.draconika.com/img/red-dragon.jpg

http://www.draconian.com/body/finalskin.jpg

http://www.google.com/...iw=1920&bih=1017

http://aaronpocock.files.wordpress.com/..._silhouette2_sml.jpg

The last few show what a six appendage animal would look like. Four legs, and a set of wings. Like a Pegasus.


Hellmistress
Lorien


Feb 1 2011, 8:44pm

Post #180 of 246 (6851 views)
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Excellent links! [In reply to] Can't Post

Now for a rummage ... there's a lot to think about.

HM


Ainu Laire
Tol Eressea


Feb 1 2011, 8:49pm

Post #181 of 246 (6849 views)
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Why can't we all just get... [In reply to] Can't Post

... a couple of dueling swords and settle this like they used to?

Evil

My LiveJournal ~ My artwork and photography

NARF since age 8, when I refused to read the Hobbit because the cover looked boring and icky.


Flagg
Tol Eressea


Feb 1 2011, 8:50pm

Post #182 of 246 (6865 views)
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Slavish adaptations [In reply to] Can't Post

I'm not worried by these words, if they are indeed Guillermo's verbatim. I can only recall seeing one film adaptation which I would describe as 'slavish': Zack Snyder's Watchmen. It was far too reverent of the source material for its own good. It kept almost everything that was good about the comic book, but neglected the fact that not everything which works on the page works on the screen. Much of the film's running time was wasted on superflous, introspective, slow-moving scenes – this is fine in a comic, where the author has unlimited space and you can look at a panel for exactly as long as you like, but the resulting film was largely a lifeless and stilted approximation of something that worked much better in its original incarnation.

I don't think slavish adaptations work. The Lord of the Rings certainly wasn't slavish – it changed plenty. A bit too much, in my opinion. But the end product was received very well by most viewers. It's interesting to note that Guillermo makes this comment while talking about the armour-plated trolls – I don't think he's saying that an adaptation faithful in terms of themes and storyline would be boring. I think he's talking about aesthetics, designs and practicalities, such as the way the films' enemy troops operate – things that don't influence or intrude upon the story itself, or its core concepts. If this is the case, then I think Guillermo has the right idea – it would be quite boring if they passed up the chance to create certain designs purely because they did not originate in the book. Many of the trilogy's visual aspects were fabrications of the same sort – look at the Mouth of Sauron, or the beasts pulling Grond, or the highly embellished (and now iconic) look of the Balrog. None of these things would be present in a truly slavish adaptation of the books.

This may be another case of Tolkien fans taking Guillermo's comments drastically out of context – remember, he hates hobbits and dragons!


Bran
Lorien


Feb 1 2011, 8:51pm

Post #183 of 246 (6857 views)
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Marvellous. Many thanks HM. [In reply to] Can't Post

It's strange how things work out. Many years ago my father gave me a stone with symbols scratched on it. He got it in Yemen many years back, claimed to be from the Queen of Sheba's palace.

We've always laughed about it, it's clearly a fake.

I don't know how, but the other day, I happened to do some research on it, and it turns out the 'runes' are Sabaean

http://www.omniglot.com/writing/sabaean.htm

and, evidently, the area he was stationed was thought to be the biblical area of Sheba. It's not a fake after all.

So I've become fascinated in such symbols again, after learning 'Dwarvish' runes 30 odd years ago.

THanks, again.

Mawr yw ein braint i berthyn i'r gwm Llynfi


Ainu Laire
Tol Eressea


Feb 1 2011, 8:52pm

Post #184 of 246 (6871 views)
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I have [In reply to] Can't Post

and in the artistic sense, too.

It was a grueling experience. A battlefield soaked with blood. I barely made it out alive.

My LiveJournal ~ My artwork and photography

NARF since age 8, when I refused to read the Hobbit because the cover looked boring and icky.


Hellmistress
Lorien


Feb 1 2011, 9:00pm

Post #185 of 246 (6871 views)
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Medieval dragons ... [In reply to] Can't Post

... just to complement the previous links for comparison.

The Aberdeen Bestiary, along with a translation of the script. It tells you all about dragons.

http://www.mythfolklore.net/...ogus/supp/dragon.htm

And a few more ...

http://phantomsandmonsters.wetpaint.com/...ted+Manuscript+c1460

http://bestiary.ca/beasts/beast262.htm

http://dulwichonview.org.uk/...-at-dulwich-college/

And a whole bunch from Viking Age and Anglo-Saxon art.

http://www.odinsvolk.ca/dragon.htm

HM


Hellmistress
Lorien


Feb 1 2011, 9:05pm

Post #186 of 246 (6824 views)
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What an awesome story! [In reply to] Can't Post

And thanks for posting the link, too! We have some Assyro-Babylonian cylinder seals in our collection with cuneiform heirogylphs on them. Ancient alphabets are always so much fun!!!

HM


In Reply To
It's strange how things work out. Many years ago my father gave me a stone with symbols scratched on it. He got it in Yemen many years back, claimed to be from the Queen of Sheba's palace.

We've always laughed about it, it's clearly a fake.

I don't know how, but the other day, I happened to do some research on it, and it turns out the 'runes' are Sabaean

http://www.omniglot.com/writing/sabaean.htm

and, evidently, the area he was stationed was thought to be the biblical area of Sheba. It's not a fake after all.

So I've become fascinated in such symbols again, after learning 'Dwarvish' runes 30 odd years ago.

THanks, again.



Eowyn of Penns Woods
Valinor


Feb 1 2011, 9:05pm

Post #187 of 246 (6824 views)
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'Cause... [In reply to] Can't Post


y'all seriously do not want the Highlander in me comin' out to play again. ;)

**********************************


NARF
NABOUF
Not a TORns*b!
Certified Curmudgeon


Hellmistress
Lorien


Feb 1 2011, 9:08pm

Post #188 of 246 (6829 views)
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Hah!!! [In reply to] Can't Post

Claymore waving!!! be afraid. be very afraid. Shocked A nice reproduction. The claidheamh mňr is a beautiful thing.

HM


In Reply To

y'all seriously do not want the Highlander in me comin' out to play again. ;)



nobofthepony
Lorien


Feb 1 2011, 9:10pm

Post #189 of 246 (6832 views)
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all I'm saying is that... [In reply to] Can't Post

All I'm saying is that my point of view isn't fear of anything different or unique, as Kanga Ska is suggesting. I watch GDT movies and appreciate them. I can handle them. I think the passionate response these bizarre ideas of GDT's are raising are because a lot of us have been waiting our whole lives to see this amazing story of Tolkien's done justice to. With some of the ideas he had...if he was still doing TH and these got out, I would be very uncomfortable with him having full creative control. IF he actually did the stuff he was talking about, this would be a GDT vanity project and I don't know who would apppreciate it beyond hardcore GDT fans.


pasi
The Shire

Feb 1 2011, 9:22pm

Post #190 of 246 (6841 views)
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I agree with [In reply to] Can't Post

Dear friend
I don't know if you remember me, but the time give me a "lot of reason".
Thanks God that GDT lives the Hobbit project.
So many strange wrong ideas about the adaptation of the Hobbit.
A question: GDT told in the past that they have a lot of projects and can wait so long.
What project they have in the present? This interview cames in a bad time, since the hobbit it´s in a pause. We have to suport PJ in is great job. He is the Man for this project. Best pasi (sorry about my english, but I'am so furious about this interview sorry)


Flagg
Tol Eressea


Feb 1 2011, 9:25pm

Post #191 of 246 (6822 views)
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Guillermo's designs [In reply to] Can't Post

I don't see how the designs described in this article are any more 'bizarre' than those used in any of his other films. General audiences responded well to the Hellboy and Pan's Labyrinth designs – not just 'hardcore GDT fans'. I see no reason why general viewers would suddenly develop an allergy to Guillermo's unique aesthetic just because it's being employed in The Hobbit this time round. Are you saying that audiences expect 'more of the same' when it comes to look of the films? If so, then there's no need to worry, as Peter Jackson, John Howe, Alan Lee and most of the Weta team involved in the design of The Hobbit also worked on The Lord of the Rings. The filmmakers have said that they are attempting to keep visual continuity with the trilogy, and I see no reason to doubt them. It's not as if Smaug appeared in The Lord of the Rings and looked different from Guillermo's design – now that would be a very different matter. True discontinuity. Thankfully I see no sign of such shenanigans – everything which pushes the boundaries of the previously-established Middle-earth aesthetic will not have already appeared in the trilogy – therefore there will be no conflict.


thesithempire
Rivendell

Feb 1 2011, 9:35pm

Post #192 of 246 (6782 views)
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Pros and cons [In reply to] Can't Post

GDT has some great ideas, and some not-so-great ideas. This shouldn't surprise anyone.
PJ had some great ideas, and some not-so-great ideas.

Smaug: Too little information to comment on.
Thorin: It's a helmet, people! As long as it looks right on the character, and helps distinguish him from 12 other dwarves, why is anyone making a fuss about this. Sure, GDT is off on the language. But so what? Tolkien didn't say he didn't wear a thorned helmet. No problem here with this.
Orcs that roll into balls: Are you people forgetting that PJ had orcs that climbed up and down vertical walls like roaches?! That's definitely not from any edition of the LOTR that I ever read.

My favorite idea of GDT's is to make the Hobbit feel more surreal and fairy-tale like. This is an ancient age of the earth. It shouldn't necessarily look like the one we see when we stick our head out the window, and yet, the other day at 5 AM, we had a monumental snowstorm, and the sky and feel of the outside was like nothing I'd ever seen. It felt like I'd stepped onto an alien world. It was great. If GDT wanted to make more "painterly skies" and distinguish the passage of eight seasons, that sounds wonderful to me. Frankly, I think ROTK has a completely mundane palette that ignores Tolkien's descriptions entirely. Mordor should've been dark. The Battle of Pellennor Fields should've been dark. Instead, the former and latter are brightly lit. Even Shelob's lair seemed brighter than it should've been. (And going back to FOTR, I'm not thrilled with the overpowering orange hue that colors Rivendell, and way overstates the metaphoric idea they were going over)

PJ gave us some wonderful designs, but we also got stuck with mountain trolls that look like big cave trolls, and are probably the most boring design I've ever seen. He gave us the King of the Dead glowing green and cackling like he just walked out of a Hannah-Barbera cartoon. He gave us Gothmog, the doofiest looking-and-sounding orc of all time (I think he was on the same production as the King of the Dead). There's a literal flaming eye that acts as a spotlight. Even the Ringwraiths should've looked more distinguished post-drowning (crowns, flame-like eyes). Those are some major ones.

On the plus side, we got Treebeard, who's perfect (thank you Daniel Falconer), Gandalf, Saruman, Gollum and basically everything that came out of the pen of Alan Lee and John Howe (with some additional thanks to Warren Mahy), Lurtz is amazing, some of the ruined landscapes, as well as Rivendell, Moria, the Shire, even aspects of Lothlorien (which is a challenge) are very cool. Rohan, Gondor. These all look incredible.

Point is: each person has strengths and flaws. Heck, some of Bakshi's designs were awesome. I guess we'll see what happens, and then we can return to debate the merits and flaws. And besides which, some will love what others hate. A lot of this is subjective.


Eowyn of Penns Woods
Valinor


Feb 1 2011, 9:49pm

Post #193 of 246 (6796 views)
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I'm not singin' that without medication, but... [In reply to] Can't Post

Geez! It's not like there was ever any danger that things would turn out like this! ;)

**********************************


NARF
NABOUF
Not a TORns*b!
Certified Curmudgeon


Maiarmike
Grey Havens

Feb 1 2011, 9:50pm

Post #194 of 246 (6791 views)
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Eesh... [In reply to] Can't Post

Oh my goodness, this thread got heated and rather nasty since I saw this story yesterday. Unsure
I agree with someone who said earlier that the things PJ will keep in The Hobbit that Del Toro designed will no doubt be fantastic, and enhance the look of the film. I love to see great collaboration, which typically always enhances creative juices. If many of his designs stay in the film, like costumes and set ideas or even creature designs, it will be because PJ and his team loved Guillermo's work on something, which I'm sure will be the case. Then most everything else will all be Alan Lee or Peter Jackson's hand. It's not like PJ is going to throw everything GDT worked on in the trash, just most likely change the things they disagreed on, and keep the things they agreed on, which I think will enhance the film.

In any case, it makes me more excited to see the film and the final designs, I'm sure they're going to be amazing. No need to fear. Smile


duats
Grey Havens

Feb 1 2011, 9:50pm

Post #195 of 246 (6811 views)
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Agreed for the most part [In reply to] Can't Post

But I thought Jackson's choice of locations for Rohan and Gondor missed the mark entirely.

Rohan was supposed to be comprised of lush, green grasslands (I believe the grass grew up to the knees of a mounted rider in some areas). Instead, we get a hilly and excessively rocky terrain in the film.

Gondor, too, was supposed to be rich and alive - with homesteads and farms populating Pelennor Fields. Instead, we get a utterly barren wasteland of dead grass.

PJ's Rohan I can at least stomach because, despite its deviation from the book, the landscape has character. The choice of landscape for Gondor, however, I find to be boring and completely uninspired.


(This post was edited by duats on Feb 1 2011, 9:55pm)


Voronwë_the_Faithful
Valinor

Feb 1 2011, 10:08pm

Post #196 of 246 (6782 views)
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I do remember you [In reply to] Can't Post

You're portuguese, right? Nice to see you here again.

'But very bright were the stars upon the margin of the world, when at times the clouds about the West were drawn aside.'

www.arda-reconstructed.com


thesithempire
Rivendell

Feb 1 2011, 10:20pm

Post #197 of 246 (6730 views)
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Well said [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
But I thought Jackson's choice of locations for Rohan and Gondor missed the mark entirely.

Rohan was supposed to be comprised of lush, green grasslands (I believe the grass grew up to the knees of a mounted rider in some areas). Instead, we get a hilly and excessively rocky terrain in the film.

Gondor, too, was supposed to be rich and alive - with homesteads and farms populating Pelennor Fields. Instead, we get a utterly barren wasteland of dead grass.

PJ's Rohan I can at least stomach because, despite its deviation from the book, the landscape has character. The choice of landscape for Gondor, however, I find to be boring and completely uninspired.


You know, I'd forgotten those descriptions! You're right. I think when I'm thinking Gondor, I've got Minas Tirith in mind. And when I think Rohan, I have Meduseld in mind. But yeah, nothing else seems to exist in Gondor except Minas Tirith and Osgiliath. A lot of aspects of Rohan got changed, including and most egregiously, its king Theoden. Bernard Hill didn't want prosthetics, so we got a much younger version of the character, who also doesn't think or behave like the one in the book. But as far as the realms are concerned, we lose a lot of them as the films become increasingly action-adventure oriented. I think the first film really had the best balance in that regard. But it's a shame that Mordor doesn't feel like Mordor. Dunharrow doesn't feel like Dunharrow, etc.

Someone said it earlier. Collaboration is key, not autocratization, unless the autocrat is a Tolkien scholar. I understand that the films needed to make comprises. However, I think Peter, Fran, Phillepa made unneccessary, egregious compromises that weren't necessary, partly because they started off with the false idea that they could successfully change major elements of the books without doing untold harm to them. It took them, what, two years to realize that Arwen didn't belong at Helm's Deep? That tells me they approached the project with the wrong mindset, and not the faithful one that some fans credit them with.

I'm hoping that they learned from their mistakes and successes, and that the two Hobbit films are going to be the best works they do, and, not-coincidentally, the most faithful to Tolkien's work.

Someone earlier talked about how being too slavish produced Watchmen. Well, the director's cut of Watchmen is one of my all-time favorite films. It's almost a thing of perfection. They did change the ending from the comics (which proves they weren't slavish), and actually came up with one that works for the cinematic experience just as well as the original works for the page. To me, that's a brilliant example of balancing faithfulness to the source material with the medium in which you're forced to adapt the source material.

My only issue with Guillermo is that I wasn't convinced he LOVED the source material, or the author, or the author's views enough to be the right translator for his work.


macfalk
Valinor


Feb 1 2011, 10:22pm

Post #198 of 246 (6750 views)
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Pasi, I also remember you // [In reply to] Can't Post

 



The greatest adventure is what lies ahead.


Flagg
Tol Eressea


Feb 1 2011, 10:37pm

Post #199 of 246 (6750 views)
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Different strokes, I suppose [In reply to] Can't Post

I too own the director's cut of Watchmen, but I'm not as big a fan of the film as you are. It seemed almost as if they used the comic as the script – after a while, the novelty of seeing each panel precisely re-enacted in live action wore off for me. I wish the filmmakers had been a bit more daring and creative. There were many scenes which I thought served little purpose, and should have been replaced with more dramatically important ones – even if it was necessary for the writers to create these themselves. I don't think it's a bad film – not at all – but considering the fact that the comic is regarded as one of the finest examples of its medium, my expectations were sky-high – and I was disappointed.

Regarding the ending... that's the one part where I actually wish they had been slavishly faithful. It seems strange that they chose to stick so closely for the first 95% of the film, then change the last 5% so drastically. I really loved the ending of the comic – completely bizarre, unexpected, surreal, twisted, shocking, creepy, memorable and weird. Exactly my kind of thing, in other words. The ending they substituted in the film was quite mild and safe by comparison – sure, it made sense, but it just wasn't what I wanted.


TheGoblinKing
Rohan

Feb 1 2011, 10:55pm

Post #200 of 246 (6718 views)
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I always Heard [In reply to] Can't Post

I always heard that [J a;ways wanted Smaug to look like the Dragon version of Malificant for he assumed Tolkien being from England had a mid evil dragon in mind

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