The One Ring Forums: Tolkien Topics: Movie Discussion: The Hobbit:
Is anyone else worried about the fact that "The Hobbit" is going to be turned into two movies?



TheNumenorean
Mutant


Jun 15 2009, 11:30pm


Views: 2495
Is anyone else worried about the fact that "The Hobbit" is going to be turned into two movies?

First let me begin by saying that I'm new to the TORn Message Boards, so please be kind (that's almost an invitation to the contrary isn't it?). And secondly, let me say that first and foremost I am a Tolkien fan.

Now, I loved Peter Jackson's film adaptations of The Lord of the Rings, though there were definitely things that I would have changed had I been sitting in the director's chair, and when rumors first started to circulate online about a potential film of The Hobbit, I was thrilled. But as the years rolled by and the legal complications between New Line Cinema, Peter Jackson, and the Tolkien Estate began to proliferate, I started to doubt that a Hobbit film would ever come into existence. Personally, I would have been fine with that, albeit a little disappointed. But then, after numerous petitions and letters to the studios, it became official that there would be a film of The Hobbit, but, and this is a pretty big but, it would not be directed by Peter Jackson. Well, that came as a huge shock to me and not in a good way, but like all other fans of the LotR films, I persevered and was ultimately pleasantly surprised when Guillermo del Toro was announced as the director and that Peter Jackson and his writing/producer partners (Fran Walsh and Phillipa Boyens) would be involved.

But then came the bad news, or at least what I perceive to be bad news; The Hobbit wouldn't just be a straightforward adaptation of the beloved children's book (and yes, it is a work of children's literature), but that it would include parts of The Lord of the Rings and the appendices of both. The Hobbit is being split into two full-length motion pictures... but why? Now, I can be something of a cynic and I'm always suspicious of capitalist intentions, particularly in the world of the arts, and I just don't see any reason to make two films. The Lord of the Rings was a far greater literary achievement and covered a larger period of time and featured a greater number of characters, so why does a single volume book like The Hobbit need to be turned into two film? I can certainly see why the studios would want this, because they'd never turn down the opportunity to make more money. But I can't understand why Peter Jackson and company, would want to take the book, which is so well-known even to those unfamiliar with LotR, and turn into two films. Won't this approach undermine the wonderful literary simplicity of the book?

Please, if you also feel strongly about this, regardless of whether you agree with me or not, share your thoughts here.
Smile


Arwen's daughter
Asgardian


Jun 15 2009, 11:45pm


Views: 1908
Welcome to TORn!

It's always good to see new faces around here!

You're certainly in good company. Personally, I don't have any strong feelings one way or the other, but many here would agree with you. For my own part, I think there's enough material in The Hobbit to make two films. And two Hobbit films is better than the original plan: one Hobbit film and an "original prequel," which would likely have consisted mostly of bits of the appendices.

In two years, you may certainly be proved right, but in the meantime, I'm going to wait for more info and hope that GDT & PJ know what they're doing.



My LiveJournal
My Costuming Site
TORn's Costume Discussions Archive
The Screencap of the Day Schedule for June


debo
Defender

Jun 15 2009, 11:46pm


Views: 1874
I feel I just have to trust the creativity of the film-makers

Welcome to the boards- nice you posted!!SmileSmile

Good point! I'd be more worried if the LotR writing team wasn't involved, but I feel there will be continuity and a similarity of vision to the Trilogy.
I'm slightly nervous about what will be IN the two Hobbit movies. There is a lot of action though, which I guess they can make more character-centred.

My two cents worth.

Frodo; "What I chiefly need now is courage . . ."


TheNumenorean
Mutant


Jun 15 2009, 11:52pm


Views: 1898
Thanks

Thanks for the welcome.
And I do agree that del Toro, Jackson, Walsh, and Boyens are the right people for the job. I just hope that they can retain the whimsy and the simplicity of the book, without turning the film into a bloated action spectacle. It would break my heart to see The Hobbit become another Eragon (yuck).

Thine own will, be thine own fate...


squire
Asgardian


Jun 15 2009, 11:58pm


Views: 1906
yes

If I understand the sequence of events, the original proposal was indeed to treat The Hobbit as one film, for the very reasons you cite. It is one book, and a simple straight-line story. Proportionately, one film seemed right, especially compared to the triple film that presented the three-volume LotR.

The original second film seems to have been the idea of Peter Jackson, possibly inspired by his partners Walsh and Boyens: to make a "bridge film" that would treat the history of Middle-earth between the events of The Hobbit and the beginning of The Lord of the Rings. They seemed confident that enough material existed in the LotR appendices, to which they had the film rights, to make a second film. Strictly speaking, it would not have been The Hobbit Part II, but an independent story. It would have completed a five-film sequence that would have integrated the entire story of the Ring from beginning to end.

But.

Once the screenwriting team of del Toro, Walsh and Boyens actually began to tackle the project this past fall, they seem to have discovered that the "bridge film" was a highly unsatisfactory idea after all. We were not given details, of course. The announcement, just a few months ago, of a new structure for the two film project was just what you have criticized, and what we have all been discussing on this board ever since: The Hobbit as a double film, with a break somewhere in the narrative. Del Toro coyly assures us the break is at the most natural spot imaginable - a remark that has generated a lot of talk and heat around here!

And why not abandon the second film entirely, and logically just make The Hobbit as one film? There you have your studios, and the need to make money: the original deal was to write and produce two films, and the writers are probably contractually obligated to deliver two films, not one, no matter what the story structure.

"Hey, chief!"
"How's it going, guys?"
"Great! We've found that The Hobbit really wants to be one film."
"Right. And how about the second one?"
"That one doesn't work after all."
"Huh? But you guys said..."
"It's OK, we're grown ups. We can admit it when we're wrong."
"So wait a minute..."
"Right! We make one film! It'll be great!"
"And I make half the money!!! Half a billion instead of a billion!"
"So what? Sometimes you just have to do the right thing ... right, chief?"



squire online:
RR Discussions: The Valaquenta, A Shortcut to Mushrooms, and Of Herbs and Stewed Rabbit
Lights! Action! Discuss on the Movie board!: 'A Journey in the Dark'. and 'Designing The Two Towers'.
Footeramas: The 3rd TORn Reading Room LotR Discussion; and "Tolkien would have LOVED it!"
squiretalk introduces the J.R.R. Tolkien Encyclopedia: A Reader's Diary


Dreamdeer
Wakandian


Jun 16 2009, 1:01am


Views: 1880
Welcome to TORn!

Welcome to TORn! And don't worry, we like newbies--they freshen the place up.

Personally, I am delighted at the thought of "The Hobbit" being made into two movies. If I was the director, I would find it really hard to cut any one thing out. Because this is a road trip more than a quest, each part, though seemingly discrete, contributes an important lesson to the overall transformation of Bilbo Baggins.

All too often commercial concerns shrink book-scripts to the tautness (and brainlessness) of a shrunken head, in order to spare the production budget. But since the fans have proven that we will reward long, elaborate movies with multiple viewings, more than enough to compensate for the extensive budgets required, they can afford to deliver the pending movies with a lot more meat (and brains) to them. I like that.

As we've been discovering with the Hobbit readalong over in the Reading Room, much complexity lies under the surface of this simple book. The beauty of it is that a child can fully enjoy the surface story and an adult can fully enjoy the deeper aspects of it simultaneously! Many who enjoyed the book in childhood are now amazed at how much they can again appreciate it as adults.

But that's my opinion. You are certainly welcome to your own. Although I hope, if I may, to ease your worries just a little.

Life is beautiful and dangerous! Beware! Enjoy!


VoronwŽ_the_Faithful
Wakandian

Jun 16 2009, 3:35am


Views: 1877
You largely speak for me, Dreamdeer

I dearly hope that they take this opportunity to get really deeply into Tolkien's text, more so than a single film would allow, rather than using it to create a lot of invented material. As you note, there is a lot more under the surface of The Hobbit than many people realize, and I would love to see the films reflect that.

Based on the comments that GdT has made so far, I am optimistic about that happening.

'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


AinurOlorin
Asgardian

Jun 16 2009, 4:08am


Views: 1923
I actually was in favour of the film and bridge

For, like you, I wanted the Hobbit to maintain its integrity in its essential format. A single story. I felt a 3 hr film plus a few odd minutes could adequately handle the fullness of The Hobbit. That said, I was of course very interested in Dol Guldur, The White Council, the concerns and actions Of Gandalf, Balin, Moria, and the other Darker matters. . . and felt that there was enough of that for at least a two hour stretch of comprehensive film, that would do all the needed work of linking Hobbit to the grander, deeper world of LOTR. The idea of The Hobbit spliting down the middle. . . I just cannot escape the feeling that it will not sit well with a lot of the audience to be told that they will have to wait a year to see The Dragon. To come and see the hobbit and never get around to Smaug? I don't know. I really feel that if they get through to Smaug, there is still plenty between the Council, backstory, and the build up to war, plus a bit of what happened after, to make a good and coherent second film. Some say it would lack the lure of the Dragon,. . . but to me that sounds of hollywood bait and hook and milk for cash concerns. There would be material enough for a good film. The point of film one should not be to leave you dangling in anticipation for film 2. I was hoping that part one of The Hobbit would be solid enough to work even as a standalone film, as a work of wonder unto itself. . . I don't think that will happen now, which, to me, is a loss.

In Reply To
Thanks for the welcome.
And I do agree that del Toro, Jackson, Walsh, and Boyens are the right people for the job. I just hope that they can retain the whimsy and the simplicity of the book, without turning the film into a bloated action spectacle. It would break my heart to see The Hobbit become another Eragon (yuck).


"Hear me, hounds of Sauron, Gandalf is here! Fly if you value your foul skins, I will shrivel you from tail to snout if you step within this circle!"

"Do not be to eager to deal out death in judgement. Even the very wise cannot see all ends."


sticklebat
Fantastic Four


Jun 16 2009, 8:43am


Views: 1868
because it's the movies...

  and because it's going to be fun & awesome to see those added parts realised on film...and the fans (granted, not all of them) will want to bask in any and all opportunities to see the beloved world of Tolkien put to screen...this will more than likely be THE last time the world would see it happen...if there were to be any attempts after this, I'm not convinced they would be all that well received, or really all that well conceived for that matter...why not put a pair of qualty films out there for fans to enjoy and savour?...I don't think they are blaspheming by doing this...but rather I see it as them being allowed to tell a fuller version of the story...the parts of the story we don't know and didn't get to read about...I myself can be a bit o a curmudeon when it comes to certain aspects of translating Tolkien into film...but I think the right people are in control of this project, and I'm very excited to see what they'll offer up for us.

Tri duath telich na estel lin...a si gerich naid bain anirach.


xy
Defender

Jun 16 2009, 12:02pm


Views: 1837
Yes, I am

I'm not into all the "we're getting LOTR actors back whenever possible and we want to tie the loose ends between LOTR and Hobbit" talk (I think this is mostly PJ's idea - GDT sounds like someone much more interested into following the Hobbit story more closely). I want to see the Hobbit, not two epic LOTR-wannabe prequel$. And definitely as little of the invented scenes as possible (it didn't work in LOTR and I doubt it will now).

There is absolutely no reason why the Hobbit couldn't be a 2 and a half hour - or 3 hours if necessary - single movie. Personally I felt perfectly okay with the original plan of sticking close to the Hobbit in the first movie, but then go wild with your imagination in the bridge movie. Now it seems like it's neither this or that.

The splitting point is just one of the many problems arising because of this decision.


(This post was edited by xy on Jun 16 2009, 12:04pm)


.Ithilwen.
Spider-person


Jun 16 2009, 12:34pm


Views: 1836
I trust the entire lot of people working on it

I haven't read the other posts yet. So if somebody already said something like this, my apologies. Wink

I was a bit unsure about 2 movies for a while. But I rented Hellboy and well, I really love both of the installments Smile
And I watched all 3 Lord of the Rings in a row (yes. It took an ENTIRE day to do this...)

And, I know PJ is only a producer...But does anyone honestly think he'd let anything bad happen with the film? Not that GDT will do anything bad; I think he's an amazing director. And Phillipa and Fran are amazing writers and love all of Tolkien's work as much as any one of us.

I don't think I'd trust anyone else to bring The Hobbit to life :)

El eria e mor
I `lir en el luitha `uren



(A star rises out of the darkness. The song of the star enchants my heart)

~AnŪron, Enya









Dreamdeer
Wakandian


Jun 16 2009, 2:48pm


Views: 1842
Cliffhangers

Cliffhanger movies were an old tradition in the early days of Hollywood, leaving the hero literally hanging off a cliff, or the heroine tied up on a railroad track with an oncoming train, etc. It kept the audience coming back for more.

Tolkien himself did not hesitate to use cliffhangers, himself. The first book ended with Frodo and Sam split off for Mordor, Merry and Pippin prisoners of war, Boromir lying there dead, and everybody else running around in hysterics. The second book was even worse, with Frodo taken prisoner and Sam knocked unconscious in Mordor with who knows what evils prowling around. Remember, a year passed between the publication of each book.

Life is beautiful and dangerous! Beware! Enjoy!


Ainu Laire
Justice League


Jun 16 2009, 3:07pm


Views: 1796
I was a bit worried at first

But after reading all of the things Guillermo has said on this board and in interviews, and hearing his enthusiasm in person... well, I'm less worried now.

I was actually more worried about the bridge film. To hear that they found that it wouldn't work that that they''ll just tie in the events of Dol Guldur with the Hobbit makes perfect sense to me, especially since they happen similtaneously.

Besides, if I spent too much time worrying I wouldn't be able to enjoy myself during these next couple years :)

My LiveJournal ~ My artwork and photography ~ My LOTR fan fiction

Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting
NARF since age 8, when I refused to read the Hobbit because the cover looked boring and icky.


Pipe Dream
Agent of S.H.I.E.L.D.


Jun 16 2009, 3:20pm


Views: 1806
I'm sort of confused.

I'm still rather new as a poster on "TORN", but if I understand correctly, everyone is concerned about "The Hobbit" as being one movie with the second movie as the bridge to the "Lord of the Rings". Correct? If so, that was the initial idea for the film makers. They have since announced they are doing "The Hobbit" as a stand alone movie in two parts. Here is the article as linked by "TORN" a while back.
http://www.stuff.co.nz/...ne-tale-in-two-parts


Annael
Avenger


Jun 16 2009, 3:50pm


Views: 1801
I like that idea

I can't say that I have a whole lot of investment in this movie; nothing like I had in the movies of LOTR. If they want to expand the story and introduce people to the wider world of Middle-earth, that's fine with me. (I never was a purist.)


I have a thousand brilliant lies
For the question:
How are you? ...
I have a thousand brilliant lies
For the question:
What is God?
If you think that the Truth can be known
From words,
If you think that the Sun and the Ocean
Can pass through that tiny opening
Called the mouth,
O someone should start laughing!
Someone should start wildly
Laughing Ė Now!
- Hafiz

* * * * * * * * * *
NARF and member of Deplorable Cultus since 1967


N.E. Brigand
Asgardian


Jun 16 2009, 4:07pm


Views: 1727
See squire's response above. //

 

<><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><>
We're discussing The Hobbit in the Reading Room, Mar. 23 - Aug. 9. Everyone is welcome!

Join us June 15-21 for "Not at Home".
+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=
How to find old Reading Room discussions.


Curious
Asgardian


Jun 16 2009, 5:23pm


Views: 1799
No. Think of it as an Extended Edition for the theaters.

Of course, I'm not worried in part because I don't have super high expectations in the first place. I'm most worried about the interjection of material concerning the White Council and the Necromancer that are only briefly mentioned in the book. But I would be worried about that whether we had one film or two. In some ways I'm glad we have two films, as it gives the film makers time for everything in the book. Unfortunately, it may also give them time for some things that aren't in the book, or at least aren't in this book.

I would prefer to see a two-part film, like Kill Bill 1 and 2, with plenty of advertising making it clear that the first film is not a complete story in and unto itself, so that everyone knows they will need to see both films. I would also prefer Darkstone's suggestion that the film end with the escape from the spiders and the discovery of Thorin's absence, as a combination of climactic battle and cliffhanger. That's pretty close to the middle of the book, too.


Morthoron
Agent of S.H.I.E.L.D.


Jun 16 2009, 5:51pm


Views: 1786
I am equally concerned...

With added 'fluff' and extrapolations added for the sake of filling out two films, because, let's face it, Jackson, Boyens and Walsh were at their worst the further they strayed from Tolkien's original story. The difficulty in adding bits from the Appendices is that The Hobbit is about a Hobbit, Bilbo Baggins, and rarely strays from the central character. Plopping in White Council material may prove too jarring and reduce the overall effectiveneness of keeping our attention on the main focus of the movie. I'm not sure we'd like to see a movie about 'The Hobbit' change into a movie entitled 'The Hobbit and Et Cetera'.

Two novel-length stories nominated for 2009 MEFAs--

MONTY PYTHON'S 'The HOBBIT':
http://www.fanfiction.net/...y_Pythons_The_Hobbit

-And-

'TALES OF A DARK CONTINENT':
http://www.fanfiction.net/..._of_a_Dark_Continent


Curious
Asgardian


Jun 16 2009, 6:42pm


Views: 1764
In all fairness, some of it is in the book.

If they don't try to make a whole other movie out of Gandalf's adventures, it could be a legitimate illustration of what Gandalf tells us in the book, and a way of linking it to Jackson's movies. We'll just have to wait and see.


TheNumenorean
Mutant


Jun 16 2009, 7:32pm


Views: 1766
About "Kill Bill" and Concerning "The Hobbit"

Actually, Kill Bill wasn't intended as a two-parter. Tarantino originally wanted the film to be a single, cohesive vision, but it was decided that ultimately the story worked better dramatically by splitting it into two parts and having the first installment focus on action and driving the story forward and allowing the second installment to focus on characterization, back story, and dialogue. To this day Tarantino's wanted to release the film the way he first conceived of it, but the studios felt that it would be too violent for U.S. audiences.

As for The Hobbit, I am a Tolkien purist, and I think that if he had intended for materials from the appendices to be included then he would have revised the book and reinserted them. Still, I'm hopeful that The Hobbit will be as good as the weakest of the LotR films. For me, what will decide whether I like the film or not won't just be whether it's a good film, but whether it's a faithful adaptation. So I guess, I'm feeling equal parts anticipation and apprehension about the whole thing.

Here's hoping that all fans will be satisfied!

Thine own will, be thine own fate...


Curious
Asgardian


Jun 16 2009, 7:43pm


Views: 1746
I know.


Quote
Actually, Kill Bill wasn't intended as a two-parter.


Yes, and for that reason it really works as one film in two parts, rather than a film and a sequel. I would like The Hobbit to be similar -- one film in two parts.


Quote

As for The Hobbit, I am a Tolkien purist, and I think that if he had intended for materials from the appendices to be included then he would have revised the book and reinserted them.


First of all, Tolkien did consider revising The Hobbit and even worked on it a bit, I believe, before giving it up. But I agree with you about sticking to the book. Heck, I wouldn't mind if they filmed the 1937 version of Riddles in the Dark, although I can't ever see that happening.

However, Gandalf does tell the dwarves about his expedition to Dol Guldur and his meeting with Thrain and does mention the Necromancer several times during the book and does tell Bilbo that a group of white wizards drove the Necromancer out of Mirkwood. So I don't see any problem with showing those events happening in the movies, as long as Gandalf's adventures don't overshadow Bilbo's.



sticklebat
Fantastic Four


Jun 16 2009, 8:21pm


Views: 1796
but if you recall...

  Tolkien didn't intend to split The Lord Of The Rings into three volumes...in fact he wholly disliked the idea...he grudgingly went along with the suggestion of the publisher, sighting that one volume just would have been too long.
in a way I'm bummed out only because we'll have to wait a whole year to see the conclusion of the story...( I can remember being in the theater, watching the closing credits of each respective installment of the trilogy roll past thinking...damn, gotta wait a whole year)...but otherwise, I'm pleased there will be a second film to look forward to.

Tri duath telich na estel lin...a si gerich naid bain anirach.


N.E. Brigand
Asgardian


Jun 16 2009, 8:27pm


Views: 1758
How about "Kill Bilbo"?

Couldn't resist. It's a joke which seems to date back to fall 2003, before ROTK was released. Sadly the phrase seems not to appear in The Hobbit itself.

Thanks for the information on Tarantino's KB films, which I've seen (and didn't care for) but didn't know the production history. I'm surprised there's no director's cut that presents his original single-film intention.

<><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><>
We're discussing The Hobbit in the Reading Room, Mar. 23 - Aug. 9. Everyone is welcome!

Join us June 15-21 for "Not at Home".
+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=
How to find old Reading Room discussions.


Buchanicus
Fantastic Four


Jun 16 2009, 9:00pm


Views: 1751
yes...


In Reply To
and because it's going to be fun & awesome to see those added parts realised on film...and the fans (granted, not all of them) will want to bask in any and all opportunities to see the beloved world of Tolkien put to screen...this will more than likely be THE last time the world would see it happen...if there were to be any attempts after this, I'm not convinced they would be all that well received, or really all that well conceived for that matter...why not put a pair of qualty films out there for fans to enjoy and savour?...I don't think they are blaspheming by doing this...but rather I see it as them being allowed to tell a fuller version of the story...the parts of the story we don't know and didn't get to read about...I myself can be a bit o a curmudeon when it comes to certain aspects of translating Tolkien into film...but I think the right people are in control of this project, and I'm very excited to see what they'll offer up for us.



Well said.

I have no problem with The Hobbit being two films, I had no problem with The Hobbit being one film and the second being a "bridge" film with stories mined from the appendices and from things refered to in the trilogy. I don't really understand why one book made into two movies would cause much concern...don't people usually dislike movie adaptations for what they leave out and change in order to pace a 400-700pg book into 2-2 1/2 hours? The point is how could you have any idea how you are going to feel about something until you've actually seen it? I definitely think to each his won, but I just can't relate to making judgements on the quality of something until it's actually fully realized (in concerns to film, books, music). Sometimes people act like there is no way they can love something or appreciate it if it's not the way they want it to be in their minds. I cherish and love my memories of reading The Hobbit for the first time and the amazing feelings it gave me as a kid, and like others have said, I have found deeper meanings and themes as an adult...things I could have never picked up on as a kid. Although written so a younger audience can enjoy it, The Hobbit is not just a children's book. But I want to cherish and love my experience of seeeing the film version too (sorry to offend, but I love movies just as much as I love books)...I'm not saying I'm going to love it no matter what, but I am going to reserve my feelings and opinions until after it's over.

TORn member formally known as ryan1976.


sticklebat
Fantastic Four


Jun 17 2009, 8:35am


Views: 1727
definitely...

and thanks...
the themes in Tolkien's writings, in the languages...stem directly from his life experiences, and in my opinion, transcend just about any other piece of fiction or idea put in to a film...they're just...different from everything else I've enjoyed reading & affected me very deeply upon reading them...a quote from Tolkien expert Tom Shippey:
"It's clear that the languages Tolkien created are created by one of the greatest philologists of all time, and I think also in them there is poured much of his professional knowledge and thought. I've often noticed that there are really very valuable observations about what Tolkien thought about real philology buried in the fiction, and I would not be at all surprised if there were valuable observations buried in the invented languages...so there may be in fact, something that emerges from it."

Tri duath telich na estel lin...a si gerich naid bain anirach.


terrymerry
Spider-person


Jun 17 2009, 6:46pm


Views: 3903
Five hours ...

Two movies, each one two and half hours long, with one hour break between ...that would suit me ...haha!Cool


fairelvenlady
Spider-person


Jun 18 2009, 12:25am


Views: 3909
Yet..

When it comes to captured Frodo the reader doesn't know what happens to him until after he's read about the seige of Gondor and the rest of book 5. If that isn't a cliff hanger I don't know what isLaugh. If you think about it Tolkien originally spilt the tale into 6 parts so even if the tale was in one volume he still was able to pull plenty of cliff hangers in his tale.

What happened when Legolas and Aragorn road with Eomer in the van.
Aragorn: Eomer, Legolas has his bow on my side of the seat!
Legolas: Well Aragorn keeps slapping me while practicing his "heroic" poses.
Eomer: Don't make me turn this van around.


GaladrielTX
Justice League


Jun 18 2009, 12:27am


Views: 4032
Iím strongly apathetic about that. :o)

Welcome to TORN where we love newbies who make sense! :o)

If the actors, crew, and the management that enabled this opportunity make more money from two films than from one it doesnít hurt me at all beyond the price of an extra ticket. The bad news for me was the selection of director whose grotesque and fatalistic vision I feel is completely incompatible with this story. Tolkien presented the danger and violence of The Hobbit at an emotional distance, and I just canít see del Toro summoning the whimsy that makes the story so wonderful.

I have no personal experience with writing movie scripts, but I do know some fine full-length films have been made from short literary works; the short stories from which movie-makers created Field of Dreams and Bladerunner, for example (also A Christmas Story which I personally dislike, but not because its origin was a short story). I would rather they tell the story of The Hobbit in a leisurely fashion, over two movies (shorter than LOTR, though) than that they cram it all in one and then make a second film that is basically fan fiction based on the appendices.

Iím also tired of three-hour death-march movies that strain the bladder. If they can make a couple of two-hour films that would be just fine with me.

~~~~~~~~

The TORNsib formerly known as Galadriel.



Guillermo
Spider-person

Jun 18 2009, 5:52am


Views: 5002
A few random thoughts-

Hola from NZ!

Please forgive the posting placement- as it responds to a few ideas expressed earlier in the thread, rather than GaladrielTX only.

As stated in many posts before, I am bound to please and displease fans no matter which way we ultimately go- My first inkling of the need for two movies came from the 3x5 card layout months and months ago.

Allow me to explain: Adapting an existing book is quite a task (iv e done it with WIND IN THE WILLOWS, THE WITCHES, HELLBOY, etc) and an artistic, instinctive endeavour. The only guide you have is your creative "gut feeling" and that of your closest associates. The carding of an adaptation, however, is quite exact... Normally I card a feature film in about 100-130 3x5 cards that detail "events" that take place in the book. THE HOBBIT (plus the Dol Guldur episodes) carded at over 300 card at its smallest. That means a 4-5 hour movie...

Now and then, allusions are vaguely made at ulterior motives for this or that action- rest assured, everyone on this side of the equation is doing this work first and foremost as a labour of passion and love. That doesnt make us right- but makes our aims true...

Condensing the book to a single film, in our opinion, makes it too much of a travelogue- an itinerary of adventures rather than an adventure itself.

Take a look at the animated Hobbit film and how much textural and dramatic material gets condensed or thrown out (Beorn for one) and you'll understand that "fitting it all" into a single film is quite impossible.

As for the concussive and concise summary of my grotesque and fatalistic vision as such, well, I can safely say that to summarize PJ's previous filmography to LOTR would probably be conducive to a similar overstatement.

I can only repeat what I've mentioned in the past: Nothing in my previous work indicates what I plan to do or what I will do with these films.

This is no warranty that you or anyone else will / must like the films and I will not even attempt at defend my command of whimsy elements -or lack of it- since its your opinion and its perfectly valid as such... But the split comes from a genuine place and from the desire to film every filmable set piece offered by the book. There are many "unfilmable" passages that belong solely to the experience of reading the book but many others are "just" difficult to crack... We are doing many symposia about all these and more...

Now, the one point where we do disagree is in liking A CHRISTMAS STORY;)

Sincerely

G


(This post was edited by Guillermo on Jun 18 2009, 5:53am)


N.E. Brigand
Asgardian


Jun 18 2009, 6:05am


Views: 3877
So, should we expect a genuine Black Arrow 1-Shot, Gut-Action Bow with

...a moon-lettered map and this thing which reckons Durin's Day built right into the quiver?


<><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><>
We're discussing The Hobbit in the Reading Room, Mar. 23 - Aug. 9. Everyone is welcome!

Join us June 15-21 for "Not at Home".
+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=
How to find old Reading Room discussions.


Ainu Laire
Justice League


Jun 18 2009, 6:49am


Views: 3903
Thanks for the insight

It's neat that both you and PJ have a similar horror background. IIRC, Sam Raimi also had a horror background, and he did a terrific job with the Spiderman franchise (well, at least the first two...). And I have to say that I am one of those who eagerly looks forward to the horrific parts of the Hobbit- the status of a children's book should not make them less horrible onscreen. Bring on the goblins, Wargs, spiders, and dragon!

I for one am still fascinated by the concept of index cards- I have used them for school projects in constructing essays and absolutely hated them- I kept on losing them! I can only imagine the stack and the process of keeping track of all the index cards for these two films (Has anyone seen Card #257?!)

Cheers.

My LiveJournal ~ My artwork and photography ~ My LOTR fan fiction

Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting
NARF since age 8, when I refused to read the Hobbit because the cover looked boring and icky.


sticklebat
Fantastic Four


Jun 18 2009, 8:01am


Views: 3875
yes...

 Tolkien most definitely had just that strategy design in mind while writing it...hence the format of The Two Towers, for example...he required the reader to read on, in order to find out what happens to the two central characters...instead of doing what Peter & crew did with he film, inter-cutting the various story lines.
It's been said of Tolkien that he was a very stalwart individual, and wrote primarily how he wanted to...and to criticize or correct him on how he did so, simply was not done...one of the main reasons I love & respect him and his work.

Tri duath telich na estel lin...a si gerich naid bain anirach.


sticklebat
Fantastic Four


Jun 18 2009, 8:14am


Views: 3865
you rock, man...

  
I'm so very excited to see BOTH of these films...I just watched Pan's for the second time, after learning it would in fact be you directing them...and the one resounding thought left in my mind was..."It's going to be beautiful..."
cheers...

Tri duath telich na estel lin...a si gerich naid bain anirach.

(This post was edited by Altaira on Jun 23 2009, 2:10am)


Elven
Wakandian


Jun 18 2009, 9:19am


Views: 3870
Two films ...

Hi TheNumenorean - welcome to torn! Smile

Im in favour of two films - I have no problem with it at all, as I cant see the story and its complexities condensed into one single film, without it either being too short or too long. The book is too long to be one film to do it justice and to tell the story with the integrity to honour the work of the writer - and somewhere in the mix of all this there is that consideration, which the scriptwriters will not overlook. Two films at 3 hrs long enables enough time to tell the Hobbit and include what ever other storythreads are persmissble that are tied in with The Hobbit - such as the Dol Guldor/Necromancer/Gandalf story, and whatever else the writers deem fit to include for the adaption. For all we know, for a seamless transition into LOTR, we maybe back in Hobbiton before the end of the second film - Bilbo's journey has done the complete circle and encompassed and tied all threads to the story. I would be more concerned if it were 3 films.

Cheers
Elven x


Swishtail.

Tolkien was a Capricorn!!
Russell Crowe for Beorn!!

Avatar: Liberace - The other Lord of the Rings.

Quote of The Week: The thing is I always write in the morning, and I know that if I go to the Net I wonít write ... you can start in the most scholarly website and end up at Paris Hilton dot com .. GdT


Annael
Avenger


Jun 18 2009, 1:38pm


Views: 3876
I would not want that!


Quote
Condensing the book to a single film, in our opinion, makes it too much of a travelogue- an itinerary of adventures rather than an adventure itself.


either that or some of the adventures would have to be cut?

I do think that the few flaws in PJ's adaptation of LOTR came when he indulged his personal love of horror a bit too much and added elements that weren't in the book - the pile of skulls in the third film for instance, or the episode with the Wargs. I hope that doesn't happen here. Sounds like time constraints will work against it. I hope so.


I have a thousand brilliant lies
For the question:
How are you? ...
I have a thousand brilliant lies
For the question:
What is God?
If you think that the Truth can be known
From words,
If you think that the Sun and the Ocean
Can pass through that tiny opening
Called the mouth,
O someone should start laughing!
Someone should start wildly
Laughing Ė Now!
- Hafiz

* * * * * * * * * *
NARF and member of Deplorable Cultus since 1967


Annael
Avenger


Jun 18 2009, 1:39pm


Views: 3869
oh and mae govannen, TheNumenorean

we do like thoughtful, well-spoken newbies!


I have a thousand brilliant lies
For the question:
How are you? ...
I have a thousand brilliant lies
For the question:
What is God?
If you think that the Truth can be known
From words,
If you think that the Sun and the Ocean
Can pass through that tiny opening
Called the mouth,
O someone should start laughing!
Someone should start wildly
Laughing Ė Now!
- Hafiz

* * * * * * * * * *
NARF and member of Deplorable Cultus since 1967


GaladrielTX
Justice League


Jun 18 2009, 5:34pm


Views: 4054
Apologies for the "concussive" nature of my statement,

and thank you for your gentle response. I learned a new word today. :o) Anyway, I need to remember that Iím discussing someoneís livelihood here. Bad GalTX!

It was interesting to learn of the technique you use to gauge the length of a film. Itís been probably three decades since I saw the animated Hobbit, but what you write about its lack of texture and drama rings true. I thought I remembered they had omitted Beorn, and heís such a wonderful, fantastic character. Iím even more comfortable with the two-movie concept than I was before.

Well, I will hope that my use of the words ďgrotesque and fatalisticĒ are indeed overstatement. I do think, though, that after a certain age (say, twenty) peopleís world view tends to crystallize and inform what they do and create. I do see certain fundamental elements in PJís work (some good, some less good), and I think itís normal for viewers/readers/listeners to find common elements and a viewpoint in an artistís work. We build abstractions about the concept we have of an artist in our own minds, to get a handle on them. (All we have are words to convey the abstraction, and I didnít want to go into an in-depth analysis of your work so I chose a couple of adjectives.) I do have certain expectations, but Iíll go see the film and try to keep an open mind. Now youíve made me curious.

But you canít get me to watch A Christmas Story again. ;o)

~~~~~~~~

The TORNsib formerly known as Galadriel.



(This post was edited by GaladrielTX on Jun 18 2009, 5:35pm)


N.E. Brigand
Asgardian


Jun 18 2009, 6:03pm


Views: 3857
How long is the 1977 animated "Hobbit"?


Quote
It was interesting to learn of the technique you use to gauge the length of a film... what you write about its lack of texture and drama rings true... they had omitted Beorn, and heís such a wonderful, fantastic character. Iím even more comfortable with the two-movie concept than I was before.



Both wikipedia and IMDb give two running times for the Rankin/Bass film, 77 (or 78 minutes) and 90 minutes. Either way, the new film could be twice as long and still shorter than any one of the three LOTR films. And The Hobbit, as a book, is shorter than each of the LOTR volumes.

<><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><>
We're discussing The Hobbit in the Reading Room, Mar. 23 - Aug. 9. Everyone is welcome!

Join us June 15-21 for "Not at Home".
+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=
How to find old Reading Room discussions.


batik
Justice League


Jun 18 2009, 11:23pm


Views: 3792
this looks promising...


Quote
THE HOBBIT (plus the Dol Guldur episodes) carded at over 300 card at its smallest.



Smile



Ettelewen
Defender

Jun 18 2009, 11:53pm


Views: 3829
Yes, I'm encouraged too.

I'm very much looking forward to seeing what he envisions. I'm actually not as much a fan of The Hobbit story as of The Lord of the Rings but I'm excited to see it filmed. It sounds like Guillermo has a good grasp of what he wants to do.


AinurOlorin
Asgardian

Jun 19 2009, 4:55am


Views: 3868
It is 79 minutes

I have it, its 79. Lacks a lot, but I know it drew in a great many kids who became fans for life. And it actually does a pretty good job of getting most of the elements in, considering the horridly short running length.

In Reply To

Quote
It was interesting to learn of the technique you use to gauge the length of a film... what you write about its lack of texture and drama rings true... they had omitted Beorn, and heís such a wonderful, fantastic character. Iím even more comfortable with the two-movie concept than I was before.



Both wikipedia and IMDb give two running times for the Rankin/Bass film, 77 (or 78 minutes) and 90 minutes. Either way, the new film could be twice as long and still shorter than any one of the three LOTR films. And The Hobbit, as a book, is shorter than each of the LOTR volumes.


"Hear me, hounds of Sauron, Gandalf is here! Fly if you value your foul skins, I will shrivel you from tail to snout if you step within this circle!"

"Do not be to eager to deal out death in judgement. Even the very wise cannot see all ends."


N.E. Brigand
Asgardian


Jun 19 2009, 5:08am


Views: 3777
Thanks! //

 

<><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><>
We're discussing The Hobbit in the Reading Room, Mar. 23 - Aug. 9. Everyone is welcome!

Join us June 15-21 for "Not at Home".
+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=
How to find old Reading Room discussions.


Morthoron
Agent of S.H.I.E.L.D.


Jun 20 2009, 2:47am


Views: 3760
Thanks for the reply, GDT!

I can't speak for everybody, but a major complaint regarding the LotR trilogy was not necessarily what was taken out (most agree, for instance, that Tom Bombadil was not necessary in the telling of the tale), rather, it was what was put in (another poster mentioned the pile 'o' skulls, the warg attack, and I would add the scrubbing green bubbles that swept Minas Tirith clean of Orcs). It is the superfluous and extraneous material that has no bearing on the original story, and which often belabors the storyline rather than enhancing it, that we're concerned about.

That being said, I understand the reasoning behind having two films to tell The Hobbit; however, I would prefer that the plot maintain coherence to the original story and not take the flights of fancy that diminished the LotR trilogy. If it is necessary to edit a part of the original story due to time constraints, please consider not adding extraneous material in its place.

Two novel-length stories nominated for 2009 MEFAs--

MONTY PYTHON'S 'The HOBBIT':
http://www.fanfiction.net/...y_Pythons_The_Hobbit

-And-

'TALES OF A DARK CONTINENT':
http://www.fanfiction.net/..._of_a_Dark_Continent


debo
Defender

Jun 21 2009, 10:02am


Views: 3755
I'm looking forward to it!!!

May the grace of God be with you as you make these movies!!

Frodo; "What I chiefly need now is courage . . ."


AinurOlorin
Asgardian

Jun 22 2009, 12:17pm


Views: 3717
Mea Culpas

I've been so caught up in the great argument, that I failed to notice on my last run that our much appreciated GDT had made a comment. Thank you, Sir. I am rather certain I will love the films, however you arrange them (so long as you don't let Peter take all of Gandalf's most explosive {literally} moments of Wizardry away from him Wink Blush Evil ). And I never really had an issue with two films, and am a HUGE supporter of Dol Guldur content. My primary concern has just been the reception of the first film. Will it have the weight of a great film on its own, or feel like an utter cliffhanger. . . my query is how the latter will strike a more general audience. There is just something about going through the whole of film one, and at its end still having had no encounter of substance with the dragon. But, I leave it in your amply capable hands, and I thank you again, very sincerely as others here already have, for putting so much energy into both the films and the fans.

"Hear me, hounds of Sauron, Gandalf is here! Fly if you value your foul skins, I will shrivel you from tail to snout if you step within this circle!"

"Do not be to eager to deal out death in judgement. Even the very wise cannot see all ends."

(This post was edited by AinurOlorin on Jun 22 2009, 12:18pm)


RosieLass
Wakandian


Jun 22 2009, 11:44pm


Views: 3672
That's it precisely!

I (and my bladder) would gladly sit through a ten-film Hobbit...if it was Tolkien's Hobbit with Tolkien's story and characters and flavor. But I agree completely with Annael that the flaws in PJ's LOTR were where he strayed from Tolkien and added his own personal indulgences. Especially when there were things from the story that were eliminated because there wasn't time to include them.

I do understand that the creative process means the director has the freedom to make the story fit his vision of what he wants to portray, and I respect that. I just feel that, in the case of an adaptation of someone else's material, it also needs to stay within the limits of what the original author intended to portray. And I feel that Jackson didn't quite succeed with that at times, especially in the case of some of the characters.

(This is where I usually get shot down.)

For example, Aragorn. He's the King of the blinking Numenoreans, fer crying out loud! He's supposed to be remote and aloof and heroic. I don't need to understand him or relate to him. I just need to know that he has a high ancestry and a mighty destiny and that his life's purpose has been to fulfill that.

Why did Merry and Pippin need to become juvenile delinquents? And Gimli a wisecracking buffoon?

And Denethor. Why take the one character in the book who really was marvellously complex and conflicted, and turn him into a drooling monomaniac?

Sorry. The characters and the changes made to them are the main thing that really gets me fired up about the LOTR films. The rest I was either extremely happy with or could see why they needed to be changed. (Or at least could shrug and move on, if I didn't understand it.)

"Rabbit's clever," said Pooh thoughtfully.
"Yes," said Piglet, "Rabbit's clever."
"And he has Brains."
"Yes," said Piglet, "Rabbit has Brains."
There was a long silence.
"I suppose," said Pooh, "that that's why he never understands anything."


- A. A. Milne


Guillermo
Spider-person

Jun 23 2009, 3:16am


Views: 5181
Worry not-

I take no offense. truly- but this is perhaps a good time to clarify two things that pop up now and then:

1) Some people post as if my involvement is big news (good or bad) and some even hope (others fear) that perhaps my involvement will be palliated and limited by the fact that WETA is involved or Howard Shore or Alan and John, etc as if I fall under "damage control" by using the same team of this or that team...

Some, more gentle in their critique, just use the word vision with quotation marks and pray for PJ to restrain me...

So, look, let me clarify these choices (Alan, John, Howard) are already my choices- Not only I never fought them- I personally urged these artists and to come back as part of the realization of the vision I have for these films. They were not brought on board as an insurance policy against my personality...

The more you are familiar with my work, the more you'll ease or increase your anxieties- but if you go from an incomplete view (only PANS LABYRINTH or only BLADE II, say) the more you will remain in an uneasy twilight-

IF you are familiar with all my work and you still have anxieties, chances are that you may have some ground to be wary of those tendencies to pop up somehow, somewhere....

B) The part that may bring the palette and tone one shade darker than the book is the Geo-political / Dol-Guldur portions, which add considerable gravity to Gandalf's quest and the origins of the map and key, but i truly believe that they will make for a much more satisfying film narrative at the end of the day.

Once again, if you seek my posting in other topics you will find that I have often, and unprompted, used that exact word: WHIMSY to describe one of the many things that will differentiate LOTR and TH.

Peter and I have said it, time and again, this will not be an exercise in mimicry of style and I will NOT be trying to emulate PJ's style or achievements but I do intend to respectfully build up on them-

In my mind, the mistake would be to approach THE HOBBIT as if it needs the exact same tools and look as LOTR, they are quite different in tone and in look and deserve to feel like tales that can be viewed together and exist in the same universe and Mithology but that can also stand on their own.

The challenges of the book and the added material is enormous since it includes many passages and moments that are iconic but difficult to translate to film- others just require of intelligence and hard work. It is my hope that in the not so distant future images, teasers etc will slowly unveil the personality and majesty of our enterprise to you all and then you can decide if you like what we are doing or not.

In the meantime I remain,

Sincerely Yours

Guillermo


batik
Justice League


Jun 23 2009, 3:37am


Views: 3724
LOL>>>at myself...

well, I certainly hope some other folks hearts raced a bit when simply reading the word *teasers*...how goofy is that?!? I am too far past my...20's... to rush time but, dang, I am ready to get back to Middle-earth on the big screen. Was reading earlier for RR discussion and the words "the roar of Smaug's terrible approach grew loud, and the lake rippled red as fire beneath the awful beating of his wings." just jumped out at me...that's gonna be something to experience.


(This post was edited by batik on Jun 23 2009, 3:37am)


VoronwŽ_the_Faithful
Wakandian

Jun 23 2009, 4:11am


Views: 3703
You, Sir, are a remarkable individual

I would add that I hope that doesn't embarrass you, but in truth, I kinda hope it does, a bit. Smile

Who know, I may even some day forgive you for the crack you made some months back about attorneys. Tongue

Cheers!

'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


farmer maggot
Spider-person

Jun 23 2009, 10:46am


Views: 3831
Thank you, and a geo-political comment!

This is only my second contribution to a thread on TORN but I have lurked on the site for almost ten years since seeing the first teaser trailer for FOTR.

Firstly I must completely echo VtF's comments and thanks. It is remarkable for you to be so open and informative so early in a project that inevitably will be the media focus for the next four years. It seems the love of JRRT's mythology inspires this approach for very many people across the world. Having first absorbed LOTR three decades previously, then put it to one side, PJ's films returned it to me and my young children at a time of real difficulty for our family, inspiring me and helping us all (because of just the trailers my seven year old daughter and I read all through the trilogy, an alternate page each) before seeing the film's which she/we adored.

Interestingly she could never truly relate to The Hobbit as it seemed too simplistic and 'childlike' for her after the trilogy.

Your comment on the 'Geo-political' aspect of the film are key for me and I hope they relate to comments made by PJ and yourself in the very original online Q&A sessions about The Hobbit. I believe you said that the final suite of five films (or more if another bridging film materializes) must all fit together coherently within the one overall and wider story within the Middle Earth mythology, linking to and bringing out the constant themes that run through both the works. Obviously they must still keep true to the unique character, indiviudality and purpose of both stories - so that The Hobbit remains as accessible as ever.

Am I right in this? I think it may be a controversial view for some on TORN who feel this will bring The Hobbit too close to the atmosphere of LOTR (I do not agree personally).

I have always seen those 'bigger' themes as being about the inevitable return of an evil thought to be destroyed, how it uses the suspicion between races and the other aspects of 'human' weakness to almost win ultimate victory, and how the comradeship, trust, courage, loyalty and sacrifice of individuals can roll back the tide. It is a huge challenge to encompass that in any film and you may see different aspects to this. For me, and I think my daughter, that continuity would make the realization of The Hobbit truly an amazing achievement, but again some may think this a step too far.

I cannot think of a better team than yourself, PJ, Fran and Phillipa to try to reach that goal. Of one thing I am sure - it is going to be a hell of a ride!

Farmer Maggot (the generous version! - see Duncan's thread)


Earl
Forum Admin / Moderator


Jun 23 2009, 3:05pm


Views: 1460
I will admit that...

... I initially did see "returning talent" i.e., WETA, John Howe, Alan Lee, etc. as a way to "rein you in". I admit I was wary about what having you as the director of these movies would entail, because I wanted a Middle-earth that was the exact same one I'd seen in LOTR, and I expected you to be a stand-in for PJ to deliver that to us.

But that was well over a year ago (maybe more... the time has flown) when you first joined this project.

Ever since then you've been sharing your experiences with us, your thoughts about these stories, your vision for these movies and your intentions about handling the material, and I've slowly come to realize that it was immature of me to expect you to be someone else (meaning PJ) while making these films. It wasn't any one thing you said, it was bits and pieces of your comments from numerous posts here on TORn and from interviews elsewhere that make me now "want" you to do these films. I feel that you're part of the Tolkien family because you respect his material. You're a brilliant filmmaker, one who cares about the source material (as can be seen from your comments), and so I'm not just "okay" with you bringing your vision to these movies, I'm "excited" to see your vision of them.

I will admit though, that I do have apprehensions about how these movies will turn out, but I would have the same apprehensions even if PJ was directing these films. That's how it will always be when a book someone holds dear is being adapted to a film.

Yet although I haven't had a peep of anything thus far, your reassurances alone have me trusting that your movies will someday be able to stand alongside PJ's trilogy in a way that the GDT-PJ pentology can be viewed as one coherent adaptation of Tolkien's works.

"Crows and Gibbets! What is the House of Eorl but a thatched barn where brigands drink in the reek and their brats roll around on the floor with their dogs! You are but a lesser son of greater sires."


RosieLass
Wakandian


Jun 23 2009, 5:05pm


Views: 1431
If you want to know the truth...

I was delighted to hear of your involvement, because I was hoping you could rein in PJ's excesses. Laugh

Seriously, though, I want to see someone else's Middle-earth, and if it's not exactly like PJ's LOTR, I don't have a problem with that. If it's nothing like PJ's LOTR, I don't have a problem with that, either. I don't ask for continuity. I just ask for a respectful treatment of Tolkien's themes and characters. It sounds, from what you're saying, that you are doing just that, so I've had no cause for alarm, especially since the bridge film idea has been abandoned.

"Rabbit's clever," said Pooh thoughtfully.
"Yes," said Piglet, "Rabbit's clever."
"And he has Brains."
"Yes," said Piglet, "Rabbit has Brains."
There was a long silence.
"I suppose," said Pooh, "that that's why he never understands anything."


- A. A. Milne


Morthoron
Agent of S.H.I.E.L.D.


Jun 23 2009, 9:57pm


Views: 1424
I agree completely...

I was not enamored of many of PJ's changes to the original material; on the other hand, I prefer many of GDT's films to Peter Jackson's offerings, as they are less heavy-handed and not dependent on horror schlock that PJ seemingly revels in. GDT is much more poetic in his rendering of stories. There are allusions and things left unsaid -- just as if the director expects his audience to to be a bit intelligent and pick out different elements of the story all by themselves! If you have ever watched 'The Devil's Backbone' (perhaps an even better movie than Pan's Labyrinth, if I may be so bold), there is a lyrical nature to the story, and the special effects are sublimated and not hamhanded like PJ's 'Look at all the money I just spent on this CGI effect!'

In any case, I too am looking for a different treatment to The Hobbit, along with the 'whimsy' GDT has promised. After all, there are many genuinely funny scenes in The Hobbit and the story is indeed much lighter than LotR.

Two novel-length stories nominated for 2009 MEFAs--

MONTY PYTHON'S 'The HOBBIT':
http://www.fanfiction.net/...y_Pythons_The_Hobbit

-And-

'TALES OF A DARK CONTINENT':
http://www.fanfiction.net/..._of_a_Dark_Continent


silneldor
Asgardian


Jun 24 2009, 3:49am


Views: 1400
Truly!

1 film=a travelogue, a fold out brochure of sights to be seem via tour bus hustled from stop to stop,''bus leaves in 10 minutes, don't be late!"
Immersion into something means to 'dwell'.
Running across the country on the Interstate does not, an exploration make.
GT loves the Hobbit and that tells me it will speak to him. That is all i need to know:).

''What connects Nature to the spiritual, or requires the presence of the latter? In positive terms, as Alkis Kontos points out, when nature was still largely experienced as integral, alive and active, 'It was the spiritual dimension of the world, its enchanted, magical quality that rendered it infinite, not amenable to complete calculability; spirit could not be quanified; it permitted and invited mythologization.' And I would add, it still is and does.''
Patrick Curry-Defending Middle-Earth-Tolkien: Myth and Modernity - chapter: 'The Sea: Spirituality and Ethics.'

May the grace of ManwŽ let us soar with eagle's wings!

In the air, among the clouds in the sky
Here is where the birds of Manwe fly
Looking at the land, and the water that flows
The true beauty of earth shows
With the stars of Varda lighting my way
In all the realms this is where I stay
In the realm of ManwŽ Sķlimo












dormouse
Asgardian

Jun 24 2009, 3:00pm


Views: 1396
Reining in or holding on....


Quote
... I initially did see "returning talent" i.e., WETA, John Howe, Alan Lee, etc. as a way to "rein you in". I admit I was wary about what having you as the director of these movies would entail, because I wanted a Middle-earth that was the exact same one I'd seen in LOTR, and I expected you to be a stand-in for PJ to deliver that to us.

I didn't see it as 'reining in' exactly, more as an assurance of - well, harmony, if you like, between something that has become loved and familiar now and something new, walking the same path. It's an initial response, a reaching-out for pointers to feel secure about in a new film we're all longing to applaud and enjoy. When you care about a book, the adaptation really matters.

This is exactly how I felt about 'Fellowship'. I knew nothing about the film until a few months before it came out, when I saw first the promotional books. I had to buy one to find about about it and having loved Tolkien's writing from childhood my fist reaction to some of the pictures and hints of the film story was to shudder at the changes I could see. Especially Lurtz, and the loss of Glorfindel. I'd never heard of Peter Jackson then: the only thing that gave me hope was the involvement of Alan Lee. It may me feel there would be something in the film that would harmonise with the illustrated book, which I already knew I loved.

But it's only a first response.

When it comes to added scenes, I'm going to break ranks and say I hope there will be some in 'The Hobbit' films and I'm trusting GDT to find some within the story itself and the appendix material that will surprise and delight me the way the best ones in 'LotR' did - the finding and return of Theodred, for example, and his funeral; the scenes with Boromir and Faramir together; Gandalf and the moth; actually seeing the fight between Gandalf and the Balrog, the Aragorn and Arwen story - things that felt like being giving an extra piece of 'Lord of the Rings' and took me back to the books, eventually enlarging my vision of them. I'm not just looking for 'that's exactly how I pictured it', I'd like some 'I never thought of it like that before' moments as well...


Earl
Forum Admin / Moderator


Jun 24 2009, 3:34pm


Views: 1364
I completely agree with you...

... I want to see a world that is familiar and yet new in a surprising way, and as I said, I've begun trusting in GDT, PJ, etc. to deliver that to us.

Also, I see what you mean about "holding on" as opposed to "reining in". The reason my thoughts were like that back in the day was because I was afraid that GDT would "do his own thing", and so I was counting on returning talent to bring him and his vision back in line with what was familiar and established.

But like I said, I know it was wrong of me to think (or even expect) that. I remember Alan Lee saying somewhere that his work on LOTR was not to satisfy himself, but to help bring PJ's vision to life. And now that I trust GDT's intent with the material, I don't see Alan Lee (and the others) as leading the way for GDT to follow. I see them in the same role they played a decade ago, but this time working to bring GDT's vision to life.

I like what you said about added scenes - the scenes you described are some of many that I am grateful for because they enhance the Middle-earth of the books without being contradictory to it. So yes, I would love to see such scenes in the new movies as long as they are in keeping with the material, and it looks like we will probably get them too, seeing as the White Council and Dol Guldur storyline are being explored. And this is exactly what I spoke of in my previous post when I said I trust GDT because I've learnt that he respects the source material, because only someone who respects an original work can do justice in adding something to it.

Btw, I don't think I've welcomed you on the boards yet. So WELCOME!!!! Smile

"Crows and Gibbets! What is the House of Eorl but a thatched barn where brigands drink in the reek and their brats roll around on the floor with their dogs! You are but a lesser son of greater sires."


Guillermo
Spider-person

Jun 24 2009, 9:51pm


Views: 2024
Dear Farmer Maggot-

Your words moved me deeply and I think this is such a clear, elegant way to refocus any and all discussions past and present-

We are indeed conceiving these two films as part of a larger entity AS WELL as representing the book within them.

Therefore the HOBBIT narrative and beats and tone etc will not exist as a standalone but will have "long lines" that will actually be carried through the existing Trilogy and will illuminate it in a different way.

I believe this can be done. The experience of seeing both Hobbit movies will contain the same iconic beats that exist in the book but they will be enhanced by the Dol Guldur / Necromancer moments.

This i not an "This OR That" but a "This AND That" point of view, since, inevitably, for most people, this films will exist as part of a larger Geopolitical landscape and in our minds this exponentially grows the appeal of the tale-

Think about it- In a strange way that's what happens the further you dive into the Tolkien Universe... things form an astonishing "Mandala" of characters and places and facts. That was an experience that, in my case, sent shivers down my spine every time I came to a fork on the road and I was able to see the connective tissue and the astonishing possibilities behind it.

The experience of reading the book, for all of us, is encapsulated in a place and a time that solidifies it forever. That "imprint" is unique to each reader the world around and, like fingerprints, it becomes distinctive and irreplaceable.

The same goes for the films- many a Tolkien fan in recent years got his / her start with the movie PJ and the gang made so the Hobbit has, by imprimatur, a double allegiance and at the same time the duty to expand and present things anew-

So- in this I am going by my compass but hand-in-hand with them... I am trying to explore the avenues that enhance my memories of reading that book or my love for the LOTR films and I'm doing it with the best team possible. Nothing we are adding feels (to any of us) as a minus but rather a plus

So, my vows-

It is my solemn duty to make THE HOBBIT the best film viewing experience that the medium can provide. We want to make these movies as unique and powerful and new for you and your children as our group of artists and craftsmen can. We want to challenge all of us into creating something we've never sen, rather than solely reproducing it- and perhaps, in some measure, rather than looking back and arguing about what was or could have been, we may smile in luring more and more readers and viewer into experiencing the Universe created long ago by the Professor.

I thank you for your kind and wise words and refreshing clarity-

Yr Obt Svt

GDT


(This post was edited by Guillermo on Jun 24 2009, 9:57pm)


entmaiden
Guardian of the Galaxy / Moderator


Jun 25 2009, 3:21am


Views: 1338
I think it's the connections

in Tolkien that bring me back to re-reading so many times over the last thirty years. There's always a new connection to find and explore, and remindes me once again of the genius of his writing.

I think Peter et. al. achieved the same in the films, as much as the movie landscape can do that. So we have the trolls, just standing there, reminding us that Frodo's journey was not the first.

Best of luck in your efforts! 2011 seems so far away, but I know when we get there we'll look back on this time and remember the struggles and uncertainty, and we'll laugh.

Each cloak was fastened about the neck with a brooch like a green leaf veined with silver.

`Are these magic cloaks? ' asked Pippin, looking at them with wonder.

`I do not know what you mean by that,' answered the leader of the Elves.



NARF since 1974.
Balin Bows


AinurOlorin
Asgardian

Jun 25 2009, 8:40am


Views: 1362
I was glad for your involvement from Pan's Labryinth on

Because that film spoke to a skill at crafting and relaying the wonder of a fairytale. And the Hobbit is much more an epic fairytale than it is a sweeping LOTR style epic saga. My hope, of course, is that all parts are complimentary. I saw your Hellboy II Elves, so I harbour no fears that Elrond or Glorfindel (should we finally be blessed to have a speaking Glorfindel on The Council Wink) will have six eyes and tentacle arms. Beyond that, I am actually looking forward to your more colourful influence. There were many pure PJ choices that I lamented in LORT, as much as I enjoyed the work overall. I was less than keen, for instance, on how much of Gandalf's trademark fire enchantments were cut out due to Peter's personal distate for exlosive magic. So, from the start, I have been quite comfortable with the idea of a new hand having a heavy influence and working alongside Peter. . . and again Pan's Labryinth in particular enhanced my faith in your abilities to do justice to this work.

As to Dol Guldur, again, I have always felt there was a place for it in a two movie scenario. My discomfort, as I mentioned, has more to do with how getting through the opening film with no Smaug interaction will come across.

But I am all for seeing Dol Guldur/White Council material, and the exposition of Gandalf's fears for The Elves in particular. By LOTR the ring has been found, and The Elves are largely resigning themsleves to depart the world, either because a Tyrant will soon dominate it, or because the preservative powers of their rings will be abolished with the destruction of The One. The Elves in The Hobbit are still very much a part of Middle Earth. . . and Gandalf is deeply troubled with concern for them. I always felt that the potential loss of Rivendell and Lothlorien was one of the most significant of the quickly bypassed topics of Third Age lore.


From all I have read, I think your general approach concerning tone etc. is perfect. I remain a little skiddish about the placement of the break. . . but I won't fixate on that. Thank you as always for posting here and for taking such interest in we fans.


In Reply To
I take no offense. truly- but this is perhaps a good time to clarify two things that pop up now and then:

1) Some people post as if my involvement is big news (good or bad) and some even hope (others fear) that perhaps my involvement will be palliated and limited by the fact that WETA is involved or Howard Shore or Alan and John, etc as if I fall under "damage control" by using the same team of this or that team...

Some, more gentle in their critique, just use the word vision with quotation marks and pray for PJ to restrain me...

So, look, let me clarify these choices (Alan, John, Howard) are already my choices- Not only I never fought them- I personally urged these artists and to come back as part of the realization of the vision I have for these films. They were not brought on board as an insurance policy against my personality...

The more you are familiar with my work, the more you'll ease or increase your anxieties- but if you go from an incomplete view (only PANS LABYRINTH or only BLADE II, say) the more you will remain in an uneasy twilight-

IF you are familiar with all my work and you still have anxieties, chances are that you may have some ground to be wary of those tendencies to pop up somehow, somewhere....

B) The part that may bring the palette and tone one shade darker than the book is the Geo-political / Dol-Guldur portions, which add considerable gravity to Gandalf's quest and the origins of the map and key, but i truly believe that they will make for a much more satisfying film narrative at the end of the day.

Once again, if you seek my posting in other topics you will find that I have often, and unprompted, used that exact word: WHIMSY to describe one of the many things that will differentiate LOTR and TH.

Peter and I have said it, time and again, this will not be an exercise in mimicry of style and I will NOT be trying to emulate PJ's style or achievements but I do intend to respectfully build up on them-

In my mind, the mistake would be to approach THE HOBBIT as if it needs the exact same tools and look as LOTR, they are quite different in tone and in look and deserve to feel like tales that can be viewed together and exist in the same universe and Mithology but that can also stand on their own.

The challenges of the book and the added material is enormous since it includes many passages and moments that are iconic but difficult to translate to film- others just require of intelligence and hard work. It is my hope that in the not so distant future images, teasers etc will slowly unveil the personality and majesty of our enterprise to you all and then you can decide if you like what we are doing or not.

In the meantime I remain,

Sincerely Yours

Guillermo


"Hear me, hounds of Sauron, Gandalf is here! Fly if you value your foul skins, I will shrivel you from tail to snout if you step within this circle!"

"Do not be to eager to deal out death in judgement. Even the very wise cannot see all ends."


farmer maggot
Spider-person

Jun 25 2009, 10:17am


Views: 1382
Yet again, Snr. Del Toro

you are prepared to give us yet more insight and clariity on your intentions for The Hobbit, which fit exactly with my wishes for these films. And with that comes such a direct, open-hearted and brave commitment to the quality you are determioned to achieve!

It is that similar commitment that still staggers me when watching PJ's film trilogy, the unswerving commitment of so many skilled and capable people for so long to making the vision of Tolkein's world, and the story telling, so rich, detailed and compelling. I cannot think of another equivalent in cinema. The phrase 'crafted in loving detail' could have been coined for this!

I think it is sometimes too easy on this forum, where everyone is so involved and knowledgable about Tolkein's legendarium, to forget the incredible achievement of the film trilogy in introducing that legendarium to such a vast global audience who will mostly never have heard of LOTR or Tolkien. It is like having a million campfire storytellers across the world telling this mythology to all the generations at once (almost). How many then turned to the books because of this (in my case came back to them)? Surely any author writes to be read and have their stories told?

If the Hobbit can repeat that effect for a fresh generation and an even wider range of audiences then you will have another truly remarkable achievement to celebrate. My younger children will be 12 and 8 in 2011 and are already waiting to see what all the fuss is about!

The Hobbit story has always had one contradiction for me; I have always seen Bilbo as a basically good and honest character (as befits a good-hearted hobbit) who was drawn in to becoming a 'burglar' by pressure and circumstance (his actions with the Arkenstone reflect this). We are later told that this inherenent quality is what allows him to resist the ring's corruption for so long. Yet he immediately and willingly 'steals' the ring from Gollum, knowing it is a;most certtainly his, and even taunts Gollum with it in his riddles. Surely this is the power of the ring now seeking to be found but was this subconciously in Tolkien's mind well before writing and constructing the LOTR mythology? Was the story of the ring already in Tolkien's mind? Did the ring perhaps leave Gollum to actively play a part in creating conflict between the Middle Earth races who were separately resisting the Necromaner?

I know JRRT later re-wrote parts of The Hobbit to cement the link with LOTR but I do not know the detail - I will ask these questions elsewhere on these boards since the Tolkien scholars can surely answer.

Thanks again for taking the time for these conversations and insights - with the hopes and good wishes of so many, a great endevour is in your hands.


dormouse
Asgardian

Jun 25 2009, 10:30am


Views: 1322
connections and so on....

I agree absolutely. On my very first reading it was that sense of immeasurable distances in time that lay behind the immediate story of LotR that captivated me - the way everything seemed to have its own history stretching way and way back, so you knew that there would always be more to find out about.

I think they did honour this in the films. Little details like the ring of Barahir were a particular joy because, much as I loved the Silmarillion stories surrounding the ring, I'd never connected it with Aragorn before...

... and reading this:

Quote

. . . We want to challenge all of us into creating something we've never sen, rather than solely reproducing it- and perhaps, in some measure, rather than looking back and arguing about what was or could have been, we may smile in luring more and more readers and viewer into experiencing the Universe created long ago by the Professor.



... I can only say 'thank you, Guillermo - I'm smiling already!!'


entmaiden
Guardian of the Galaxy / Moderator


Jun 25 2009, 2:26pm


Views: 1340
The changes

occur mostly in the "Riddles in the Dark" chapter. I would suggest "The Annotated Hobbit" by Douglas Anderson which has an excellent summary of the changes that Tolkien wove into the story. In the original version, the Ring was valuable but not evil. It did make the wearer invisible, but that was the extent of its powers. Bilbo won the riddle game as is currently described, but then bullied Gollum into showing him the way out. Gollum, since he doesn't the soul-consuming power of the Ring that came about later, cravenly shows Bilbo the back door.

In my fantasy world, I find an original copy of the Hobbit at a jumble sale, and buy it for $1. I don't need a first edition, just the original version.

Each cloak was fastened about the neck with a brooch like a green leaf veined with silver.

`Are these magic cloaks? ' asked Pippin, looking at them with wonder.

`I do not know what you mean by that,' answered the leader of the Elves.



NARF since 1974.
Balin Bows


FarFromHome
Wakandian


Jun 25 2009, 3:41pm


Views: 1300
The original Riddles in the Dark

side-by-side with the new version can be found here. Maybe that will be useful until your fantasy $1 original edition turns up!

Wink

They went in, and Sam shut the door.
But even as he did so, he heard suddenly,
deep and unstilled, the sigh and murmur of the Sea
upon the shores of Middle-earth.
From the unpublished Epilogue to the Lord of the Rings



farmer maggot
Spider-person

Jun 25 2009, 3:56pm


Views: 1305
Many thanks,Entmaiden

That summary is very interesting and I will have to go back to my Hobbit copy to check the subtlties. I guess original Bilbo just felt entitled to take the ring as part of his prize for winning the game, since losing would have meant being eaten! I also guess this means the finding of the ring cannot, at that stage have had any significance in promoting the conflict between races and ensuing battle of (eventually) five armies.

I am still curious about how this changes our view of Bilbo's character, whether JRR realised and deliberated on this, and how much of the overal actual and political Middle Earth landscape he already had in mind, rather than being post rationalised. I wonder of there are any concrete clues.

It may be some time until I can get to find an Annotated Hobbit. I may ask this question on a separate thread to raise some views on how a 'standalone' Hobbit could so easily become central to the Third Age story.


entmaiden
Guardian of the Galaxy / Moderator


Jun 25 2009, 4:24pm


Views: 1300
The Battle of Five Armies

hinged more on the dwarves' treasure and the Arkenstone, not as much the Ring. Bilbo used the Ring to briefly escape from the dwarves, meet with Dain and Thranduil and then return, but he used the Arkenstone as ransom. No one at that point knows he has the Ring, although Gandalf suspects. But even Gandalf at that time has no idea of the Ring's history. He learns that many years later, well after Bilbo returned to the Shire.

Even with the changes made to integrate better with the LOTR story, I don't see that the Ring has much impact on the Hobbit story. The rewrites of The Hobbit were done to link it to the later stories, and I'm glad that Tolkien made the changes without substantially changing The Hobbit story.

See Farfromhome's link also, which has a side-by-side analysis of the changes. It's not a subsitite for the Annotated Hobbit, which is excellent, but it's a good comparison of the two texts.

I think your idea of a separate thread is a great idea, and look forward to you posting it!

Glad you joined in the discussion and hope it happens more often than a few times over 10 years of lurking. Smile

Each cloak was fastened about the neck with a brooch like a green leaf veined with silver.

`Are these magic cloaks? ' asked Pippin, looking at them with wonder.

`I do not know what you mean by that,' answered the leader of the Elves.



NARF since 1974.
Balin Bows


grammaboodawg
Avenger


Jun 25 2009, 4:49pm


Views: 1322
Howdy and Welcome TheNumenorean :D

Sorry it's taken so long to get here... but I'm glad you've found your way to our boards :D

Personally, I'd been so long just hoping and praying that The Hobbit would be made at all... and THEN that Peter and his filmic family would be the ones to do the work on the adaptation... that I'm focusing on my trust that Jackson will make sure the story is safe and done right. He's the one that has invested over 12 years into getting LotR done and trying to get The Hobbit done, I just can't see that he'd do anything to degrade the story or Tolkien's works. I'm wishing he was doing the directing, but I'm trusting his decision to bring GdT into the play... which I'm more and more comfortable with as time goes on and I see his (GdT's) excitement.

I'm also happy about the expansion of TH into 2 films now that it appears they'll be expanding the subtext of the story. Especially the White Council and maybe even seeing Gollum leaving the mountain. I know that doesn't happen until much later in the story... but they may need to take the luxury of changing that as they did for LotR. It also depends on how long the films are. If they're 2 to 2.5 hrs long, that's a good timeline for telling the story correctly.

This is an exciting time... especially when you consider all the years of waiting and the threat that this may not have happened at all. It's going to be fabulous... and I can't wait to see it, hear what Howard Shore's music will be, and get to return to Middle-earth a la NZ all over again. These are great days, and I feel so lucky to be here at its inception... knowing this, along with LotR, will be treasured classics.

Cheers! And try not to worry. The story's in good hands :)



sample

"There is more in you of good than you know, child of the kindly West."
~Hug like a hobbit!~ "In my heaven..."

I really need these new films to take me back to, and not re-introduce me to, that magical world.



TORn's Observations Lists


TheNumenorean
Mutant


Jun 25 2009, 5:28pm


Views: 1269
Agreed

I find myself in agreement with Morthoron regarding adding material to the films. For me the greatest flaws of the LotR films wasn't the omission of certain "minor" characters, but rather the addition of events and characters (most of these unnecessary deviations from the books occurring in The Two Towers revolve around the Helm's Deep and Osgiliath sequences) that were in contradiction to the source material. Now, I loved Peter Jackson's vision of the LotR story, but the fact remains that it was his vision and not Tolkien's that we saw one the screen. To a certain extent, I think viewers will be able to expect much of the same when it comes to The Hobbit. Guillermo is a wonderful director with a great knowledge of folklore and mythological archetypes (see El Laberinto del Fauno for evidence of this) , which will definitely aid him in his adaptation of Tolkien's work, however, we can't expect a direct translation from the literary to cinematic medium. I'm fully confident that Guillermo, Peter, Fran, and Phillipa will all come together and create an amazing film, but what I'm hoping for is an amazing adaptation... not quite the same thing.

As for Guillermo's past films, I must admit that with the exception of El Laberinto del Fauno, he seems an unlikely choice for what is in essence a children's fantasy/adventure film. But then again, so did Peter Jackson when he was announced as the director for LotR. I'm just thankful that he's been so in touch with both fans of the books and the films. I think that keeping an open line of communication here on TORn between the fans and the film makers is absolutely imperative. Who knows, maybe they'll even listen to our opinions and ideas and allow them to impact the final film.

Thanks to everyone for being so outspoken about this and for being welcoming to a new voice here on the site.
I bid all a fond farewell and I shall return...

Thine own will, be thine own fate...


weathertop
Defender


Jun 25 2009, 5:56pm


Views: 1303
ahhhh thanks

i've never seen a comparison before. definately interesting to see the changes.

one thing that struck me as curious tho. why would he change the passage out? in the original it was 6 right, 4 left; in the revision its 7 right, 6 left...
i didn't see anything else in there that would indicate the necessity of this change. was it just for the fact that JRRT needed something a bit further on down the tunnel in order for the extended counting sequence to make sense?


N.E. Brigand
Asgardian


Jun 25 2009, 8:15pm


Views: 1302
Bilbo doesn't taunt Gollum.

In the revised version of "Riddles in the Dark", Bilbo finds the Ring in complete darkness, and drops it in his pocket without any idea of what exactly it is that he's found. He doesn't know that it belongs to Gollum until after the riddling is complete and Gollum is angrily rushing toward the hobbit from his little island.

<><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><>
We're discussing The Hobbit in the Reading Room, Mar. 23 - Aug. 9. Everyone is welcome!

Join us June 15-21 for "Not at Home".
+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=
How to find old Reading Room discussions.


N.E. Brigand
Asgardian


Jun 25 2009, 8:18pm


Views: 1273
Of course, in LOTR

--the book, I mean-- Aragorn had given Arwen that ring years earlier.

<><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><>
We're discussing The Hobbit in the Reading Room, Mar. 23 - Aug. 9. Everyone is welcome!

Join us June 15-21 for "Not at Home".
+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=
How to find old Reading Room discussions.


dormouse
Asgardian

Jun 25 2009, 10:13pm


Views: 1258
True....

....but it made sense in the context of the film and I'd forgotten the connection (always glad to be reminded of Finrod Smile )


farmer maggot
Spider-person

Jun 26 2009, 8:57am


Views: 1278
Many thanks, FarFromHome

That link proved very valuable in highlighting the changes. I am still interested in what they do to adjust our view of Bilbo's character, and whether JRRT had this in mind. For me Bilbo goes from a somewhat weak and opportunistic 'adventurer' (at this stage of the Hobbit) to a much more symapathetic character already controled by the ring but instinctively resisting corrucption - witnessed by his sympathy in not killing or injuring Gollum.


farmer maggot
Spider-person

Jun 26 2009, 9:14am


Views: 1267
The one obvious power of the ring,

to provide invisibility, is the only thing that allows Bilbo to complete most of the rest of the Hobbit quest and story. My thought was whether the ring affected any of his later actions in ways designed to keep the Elves, Dwarves and Men in suspicion and confrontation. But I guess it would just have been easier to make sure to be found by a Goblin, in which case it would go straight to Sauron and we have no Hobbit or LOTR stories!

Thanks for you commentary on this. By the way I completely agree with your comments about connections, linkages and reminders in both the book and films. That incredibly well developed and concieved web of connected and mutually supporting threads makes that world feel real and concrete.

I will post the thread about JRRT's Hobbit revisions and writing process when I can, I think it could help draw out aspects of the Hobbit/LOTR relationship. And I will certainly try to comment more on these TORN boards, provided I have something valuable to say!


farmer maggot
Spider-person

Jun 26 2009, 9:27am


Views: 1240
I stand corrected N.E.B, thanks

as I realised when I could actually check my faulty memory with the side-by-side comparison of versions on the link FarFromHome provided.

I guess in the original version Bilbo concluded that he had already won the ring anyway in the riddle game, even thought strictly he cheated by not asking a true riddle on his final turn. In the revised version he never thinks of placating the situation by giving the ring back to its previous owner! I presume that is due to the power it already holds over him. We should be thankful for that since an invisible Gollum would polish Bilbo off in no time at all!

We would be back to square one and minus one hobbit! And Smaug would still be rampaging even now!


dormouse
Asgardian

Jun 26 2009, 1:32pm


Views: 1254
I hope you do post the thread, Farmer Maggot,

... and I hope I find it when you do. I knew Tolkien had revised the text of The Hobbit but had never tried to find out what it said originally, and the changes are interesting. It intrigues me particularly that the original includes the comment on Bilbo's finding the ring. 'It was a turning point in his career, but he did not know it.' I think it's interesting that Tolkien gave so much importance at that stage to something that was barely more than a plot device - a means to escape the goblins and, if he had planned the text so far ahead, to help Bilbo fulfil his role as burglar.

But I'm wondering if he did have a sense that this was something greater, even then, though he hadn't defined what it was. I curse myself for not looking into this more deeply before and for having no time now, but in a letter quoted in the History of Middle Earth he talks about his mythology being in coherent form before 'The Hobbit' was written and 'The Hobbit' starting out as a simple children's tale and being drawn closer to the mythology, and the ring being key to this.


TheNumenorean
Mutant


Jun 26 2009, 4:09pm


Views: 934
I prefer that revised edition...

I prefer that revised edition because otherwise it feels, in retrospect, like a very obvious foreshadowing that the Ring is having an affect on his character. Bilbo just doesn't seem like he should be spiteful.

Thine own will, be thine own fate...


farmer maggot
Spider-person

Jun 26 2009, 11:16pm


Views: 927
Hi Dormouse, I will post that thread

and will let you know when I do and where to look. Thanks for your thoughts and comments which do start to give more insight into the background to the writing process but actually still beg more questions for me.

In my swift initial reading of the comparisons the comment about finding the ring as a turning point in Bilbo's career seemed to me to refer to his reluctant career as a burglar, with the invisibility confered by the ring allowing him to be sucessful against all odds. That would make it a fairly natural comment but it could easily have a wider and deeper meaning.

What really now intrigues me is how easily JRRT could use fairly minor re-writes to the Hobbit a little later to fully link the Hobbit and LOTR stories within one Third Age history and one consistent mythological geography. I had expected some revisions to be laced all through the book to achieve consistency and that precious sense of a real and open ended historical narrative. So much of The Hobbit seems almost perfectly pre-set. Was the whole plan, if not the details, of Third Age history already in Tolkien's head and this children's story a way of testing the water before committing to writing the complete story?

Perhaps the reasearch and Tolkien scholars can throw some light on this. We know the re-writes do somewhat change the sense of Bilbo's character (for me anyway) but they also open the door to glimpses of much more profound forces working underneath both these stories, with the ring as just the tip of the iceberg.

I will post the thread as soon as I have time.


BlueAznMonkey
Human

Jul 15 2009, 8:24pm


Views: 927
Where the movies split...

I think this is what will determine whether or not the overall reception of the movies is a good one. If the first movie ends and the viewer is left feeling like /nothing/ is accomplished then general audience members who haven't read the book will probably not be encouraged to return for the sequel.

That being said - I have to skim the book again to verify this hypothesis - I think they will end the first movie after Sauron is forced out of Mirkwood in his Necromancer form. That would be an uphill swing into the next movie, and the audience would feel pretty entertained even though Smaug hasn't been seen yet.


This has probably been speculated before... Any thoughts?


TheNumenorean
Mutant


Jul 15 2009, 8:36pm


Views: 884
Maybe...

Well, on the one hand that's a good idea thematically and tonally, but if we're looking at "The Hobbit" as a separate entity from "The Lord of the Rings" films then we don't really want to know in advance that Saruman is the evil Necromancer because then it spoils the revelation that Saruman has been corrupted in "The Fellowship of the Ring". The same could also be said that we don't really want any discussion of Sauron or The One Ring in "The Hobbit" because that would too accurately foreshadow the events of "LotR" and ultimately minimalize the emotional impact of those films. This is where I have a huge problem with taking the material from the appendices and including them in the book. Tolkien never intended for that material to find its way into the story's narrative, hence their exclusion from the main thread of the story and their inclusion in the appendices.

My main concern is that rather than treating "The Hobbit" as its own unique story, the filmmakers will turn it into a prequel, which it isn't really at all. For an example, what the filmmakers need to think about is how "The Hobbit" will introduce new fans to "The Lord of the Rings" who haven't seen those films first. Take for example "Star Wars". For that unfortunate generation that saw the prequels first and then the original films, they'll already know that Luke and Leia are brother and sister and that they're Darth Vader's children and the classic revelations in the original films go from being of shocking emotional power to redundant instead. That's why prequels are so tricky to pull off. You have to be able to introduce enough new story material to keep viewers interested while staying true to the pre-established story. Not an easy feat by any means.

Thine own will, be thine own fate...


BlueAznMonkey
Human

Jul 15 2009, 9:15pm


Views: 889
Suruman = Necromancer?

Forgive me but I thought the Necromancer in The Hobbit was SAURON not SARUMAN. If Saruman was the Necromancer that was removed from the stronghold in Mirkwood, then Gandalf would NEVER have gone to him for counsel in The Fellowship of the Ring. Saruman may show hints at his corruption if the filmmakers decide to show us the Council that Gandalf attends during his absence, but aside from that, SAURON is the "evil" that is removed from Mirkwood, not SARUMAN...

I'm pretty sure I'm right or else I've been reading these books all wrong for the last decade! Can anyone confirm?


TheNumenorean
Mutant


Jul 15 2009, 9:18pm


Views: 986
Oops

Yes, you're right. I'm sorry for that bit of confusion. I'm writing three things at once while I'm posting here as well, so I wasn't thinking clearly. But you get the idea of my general concerns about foreshadowing, don't you?

Thine own will, be thine own fate...