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The One Ring Forums: Tolkien Topics: Movie Discussion: The Lord of the Rings:
**FOTR EEDVD Appendices Discussion** Visualizing the Story : Bag End Set Test pt 1

grammaboodawg
Immortal


May 13 2009, 2:22pm

Post #1 of 15 (2086 views)
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**FOTR EEDVD Appendices Discussion** Visualizing the Story : Bag End Set Test pt 1 Can't Post


Welcome to my humble contribution to the discussion of the Fellowship of the Ring eedvd Appendices. My segment is from Part One: Book To Vision : Visualizing the Story : Bag End Set Test


larger version

This featurette is located on disc 3 of the 4-disc set of the FotR eedvd.
At the Menu, arrow down to From Book To Vision
Then choose Visualizing the Story
You're here! Now choose Bag End Set Test


Over the next 3 days, I'll be approaching the six minute and thirty-three second Bag End Set Test Featurette in 3 installments. Each will conclude with deeply-stirring questions and brilliant observations... maybe. I will be including pics from the Featurette with the unfinished sets and include a shot or two of the developed scenes with the finished set.

PART 1 – The Plan will follow what happened at the initiation of the Test beginning with a narrative or two. We'll then look at the set, the camera angles, and the set Testing.

PART 2 – A flaw in The Plan will follow the spontaneous revision to the Test, the camera angles, and the dimensions of the set in terms of how it would affect performances/filming.

PART 3 – Stick to The Plan... Somebody! will follow the second phase of the Test; again with camera angles, the set dimensions and its utility. The adventure will end with enlightened open discussion.

=-=-=-=


PART 1 – The Plan

This installment of the Featurette follows what happens when the newly-constructed Bag End is tested by Peter Jackson to make sure the dimensions of the set are good and to work out camera angles for the various scenes. What began as an actual Test very quickly became an opportunity for Peter to have a bit of fun.

With a whimsical look on his face, like he's remembering something he really enjoyed, Peter begins the Featurette with a description of how the day began...


Peter Jackson: I remember there was one weekend, a Sunday afternoon, that was about a month or so before we were going to start shooting and the set was standing there in the studio ready to go. And I got a few of the people on the film... Rick Porras our co-producer came along... and one of the special effects guys, and I was there ... and we had our screenplay...


Rick Porras: Peter could talk me and the rest of us into anything. Initially he worked through... he said okay, what we'll do is I'll direct the stuff... We had Brian Van't Hul do the camera work. Charlie McClellan, who is one of the visual effects producers at the time, he started off as Gandalf. Randy Cook, our animation director; he played Sam.

..
Van't Hul/Camera....McClellan/Gandalf.... Cook/Sam


Christian Rivers: Peter was playing.... Well... he wasn't playing Bilbo to start off with. I think he had Rick Porras playing Bilbo.


Rick Porras: I... I definitely can't act to save my life. But I thought, okay that's fine. I'll read for Pete just so that he could work through the angles. We got to this point in the first scene, and Pete says, "Cut. Great. Okay. So listen... what we're gonna do next is I'll play Bilbo... *begins to laughs*

On with the Featurette: The Bag End Set Test

Cast and Crew:
Bilbo Baggins played by Rick Porras//Peter Jackson (Co-Producer/Associate Director // Director/Writer/Executive Producer)
Gandalf head played by Charlie McClellan (Vfx Producer R&D (WETA Digital/digital visual effects designer & creator))
Frodo Baggins played by Rick Porras (Co-Producer/Associate Director)
Sam Gamgee played by Randy (Randall William) Cook (Effects & Animation Designer/Supervisor (WETA Digital/digital visual effects designer & creator))
The Ring played by Rick Porras' new wedding band (origin unknown)
Camera operator Brian Van't Hul (Vfx Cinematographer (WETA Digital/digital visual effects designer & creator)
With additional commentary by Christian Rivers (Pre-visualization Supervisor/Art Director (WETA Digital/digital visual effects designer & creator))


[Rick Porras starts to portray Bilbo as he stands in the entrance to the living room, leaving the kitchen with a mug of "just tea thank you" for Gandalf. He's talking to the Gandalf head high on a pole with a coat dangling below. The angle is low, behind and to the right of Gandalf head and looking up towards Bilbo.]



RP Bilbo: Of course, of course. I'm just waiting for the right moment.

CM Gandalf head: Don't leave it too late. He's very fond of you.

[The angle then moves to the fireplace as Bilbo approaches haltingly and staggers so that when he collapses against the fireplace, his face is close to the low camera... looking up towards Gandalf.]

RP Bilbo: I know; I know. [begins to stagger and collapses against the fireplace]

[Gandalf head rushes forward]

CM Gandalf head: Bilbo?




[Suddenly, miraculously, RP has grown a beard and shaggy hair... becoming Peter Jackson!]

PJ Bilbo: I'm old, Gandalf. [turns to look at Gandalf head] I don't look it; but I'm beginning to feel it in my heart. [walks away]


Rick Porras [Back to narration]: *still chuckling* I think THAT'S one of the best moments of cinematic history right there!

The camera angle on RP is from in front of him looking up to Gandalf head, while PJ's is over Gandalf heads left shoulder looking down to Bilbo. We now know that this scene changed to Gandalf and Bilbo in the kitchen, so the preliminary angle Tests are superfluous.

We've caught a glimpse of Bag End at its infancy. The shell hints at the warm, inviting Baggins home it's to become. We've also seen how camera angles will be used to manipulate the scale or forced perspective approach to showing the difference between our Hobbit and Wizard.

Our main set pieces for this riveting drama:



A shot in the opening narrative of the living room looking out to the front door.


Another perspective of the living room looking from the doorway next to the fireplace out the front window.


And a shot of the unmantled fireplace (look up a couple of pics for the finished product).


Q&A time!

1. What did you think of Peter's quick shift from being an onlooker/director of the mini-scene to headlining the show?

2. Trying to get your headspace into experiencing this set for the first time, do you think this is an effective step in the creative process?

3. Given this brief encounter with a small part of Bag End, can you tell if there have been any changes made in the final set?

4. What do you think the carpenters are doing whilst waiting for this very serious Set Testing that is going on?

In our next segment, we'll be seeing a LOT more of what's behind the green door on Bagshot Row. So grab your pipes and pints and meet me here tomorrow for some heavy-duty testing!


END OF PART ONE!

In PART 2 – A flaw in The Plan, we move directly into the opening Test shots with the dialogue between Bilbo and Gandalf after our Hobbit has slipped away from the party and appears inside Bag End...

[[pictures courtesy of The Lord of the Rings Image Library and Screencap Paradise]]


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


(This post was edited by Ataahua on May 13 2009, 7:46pm)


Elven
Valinor


May 13 2009, 5:17pm

Post #2 of 15 (1683 views)
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Bag End Under-Hill Under-Construction ... [In reply to] Can't Post

1. What did you think of Peter's quick shift from being an onlooker/director of the mini-scene to headlining the show?
I sometimes think because of this, that Peter really had in his head what he wanted to see, not only in the way of where the scene should be played out, but how he wanted it said and how he wanted it acted out. I bet he was itching to play Bilbo (just a teeny weeny bit anyway Wink). I would have expected him to be behind the camera - but I can see that his plan got him closer to the 'camera' and what he wanted to see through the lens on film by playing the part. And I guess that was he he nutted out alot of things which may have gone haywire on the day, as well as things that worked really well.

2. Trying to get your headspace into experiencing this set for the first time, do you think this is an effective step in the creative process?
I think this step was not only creative, but must have also eased Peters mind about how to manage the scene (with everyone being around) - and to walk through the process and get a glimpse of what he might be up against, and what would work well - I think he might have idea overload, made it a bigger creative process, an expansion. It must have been wonderful to be able to get some of this set out of the way (in his mind) - and he must have been so pleased with the set design and construction when he saw it. I cant imagaine how he must have felt seeing thos for the firt time - all the possibilities and where everything would happen.


3. Given this brief encounter with a small part of Bag End, can you tell if there have been any changes made in the final set?
I remember seing Rick Porras when he played Bilbo - stepping down into the kitchen to go and get the ring off a bench (or an area i think was the kitchen) and I dont remember seeing this in the set - the floor semed flat ... then again my mind could be playing tricksesss on me too Shocked Wink. And as you mentioned gramma, the mantle piece as well. I always thought it would have been cool to have walked into Bilbo's front room and see a split staircase to the side - one that went up a level to a little grassy balcony, and one that went to the pool room downstairs Wink Maybe thats my Hobbit house Im thinking of in my dreams.


4. What do you think the carpenters are doing whilst waiting for this very serious Set Testing that is going on?

Maybe they were building the miniature set - or studying the achitecture of the pub down the road Wink Chippies! *roll eyes emoticon here*


WoW gramms! A great begining to a wonderful 3 days!
Fanatstic post to be sure!
Look forward to the next 2!

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 won’t write ... you can start in the most scholarly website and end up at Paris Hilton dot com .. GdT


Lily Fairbairn
Half-elven


May 13 2009, 8:21pm

Post #3 of 15 (1758 views)
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With my usual tendency to wander off-topic [In reply to] Can't Post

I have to ask: Where did the gruesome Gandalf-head come from? Was it something that was actually used in the movie or was it left over from one of PJ's earlier efforts? Is this explained somewhere and I missed it?

To me it evokes that rather jarring line in the last chapter of the book, where the young hobbits sit on the lawns beneath the plum trees and eat until they make piles of stones like the heaped skulls of a conqueror. (Which, to me, is right up there with the firework dragon passing like an express train in "A Long-Expected Party" -- both images seem out of place.)

Ahem Wink

I love Bag End, the curves, the wood, the needlework. Thanks for your presentation, gramma, and I'm looking forward to the next installment.

* * * * * * *
Do we walk in legends or on the green earth in the daylight?

A man may do both. For not we but those who come after will make the legends of our time. The green earth, say you? That is a mighty matter of legend, though you tread it under the light of day!


weaver
Half-elven

May 13 2009, 11:22pm

Post #4 of 15 (1611 views)
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PJ's not afraid to be in front of the camera, is he? [In reply to] Can't Post

Q&A time!

1. What did you think of Peter's quick shift from being an onlooker/director of the mini-scene to headlining the show?

A star is born! I really liked him as Bilbo...he can act! I know sometimes actors later become directors...but I guess the process can work the other way, too. My general impression is that once he got into the set and starting moving around in it he realized the only way he could get a sense of how it would work was if he took on the role of Bilbo himself.

Maybe he also just jumped in to save poor RP -- he really looked like he did not want to do this at all and needed rescuing!

2. Trying to get your headspace into experiencing this set for the first time, do you think this is an effective step in the creative process?

Well, to translate this to writing, a field I'm more familiar with, there's a point where you have to stop talking about what you are going to write, and stop outlining the contents, and just put some words on a page. It sounds to me that organically speaking, the film process had just reached a point that particular Sunday when Jackson sensed he had to get past concept and into a three-D environment with real people, and these guys just happened to be there and got pulled in on the process.

3. Given this brief encounter with a small part of Bag End, can you tell if there have been any changes made in the final set?

Hmm...the doorway area looks different to me -- though maybe it's just because it's not finished. I can't tell who's sitting there in front of the open door, but it looks like there may be a step there...I don't think there was one in the films, was there?

4. What do you think the carpenters are doing whilst waiting for this very serious Set Testing that is going on?

I would bet it would have been hard not to stop and watch, with all of this very serious stuff going on! Seriously! Later, after they had been at this for years, people probably built things while Theoden was dying, but this early on, the whole thing was still pretty novel and the first time that the set was actually "used" would have been hard to pass by in terms of observing the action...
well, for me at least!

I love this feature -- it's a lot of fun. Thanks for taking it and thanks for all the great pictures!


Weaver





OhioHobbit
Gondor

May 14 2009, 1:34am

Post #5 of 15 (1668 views)
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Give me that ring! [In reply to] Can't Post

1. What did you think of Peter's quick shift from being an onlooker/director of the mini-scene to headlining the show?

I think that he really wanted to play Bilbo.

2. Trying to get your headspace into experiencing this set for the first time, do you think this is an effective step in the creative process?

This had to have saved a lot of time when they actually went to shoot it. Besides that, how could Peter resist with the set standing there?

3. Given this brief encounter with a small part of Bag End, can you tell if there have been any changes made in the final set?

I never thought about that. I am going to have to pay attention now.

4. What do you think the carpenters are doing whilst waiting for this very serious Set Testing that is going on?

Well, it was Sunday.

This must have been a lot of fun. It kind of reminds me of getting ready for a high school play. I love everything about this. The unfinished set, the head on a stick, the acting. I get such a kick when Katie comes in and yells hi at them.

Thanks, Gramma! This is great!

Movie Technical Discussion -- Index


grammaboodawg
Immortal


May 14 2009, 2:18pm

Post #6 of 15 (2556 views)
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**FotR eedvd Appendices : Visualizing the Story : Bag End Set Test pt 2 [In reply to] Can't Post

We're in day 2 of my 3-day study of the six minute and thirty-three second Bag End Set Test Featurette. As before, I will be including pics from the Featurette with the unfinished sets and a shot or two of the developed scenes with the finished set. Since this is a pretty full, action-packed sequence with Peter and the others, I've gathered several of the frames into groups. There will also be links to larger versions of them for closer study.

We've already conquered PART 1 – The Plan as it followed those first moments of the Test.
PART 2 – A flaw in The Plan will follow the spontaneous revision to the Test, the camera angles, and the dimensions of the set in terms of how it would affect performances/filming. Followed by...
PART 3 – Stick to The Plan... Somebody! will follow the second phase of the Test; again with camera angles, the set dimensions and its utility. The adventure will end with enlightened open discussion.



Continuing with the Featurette: The Bag End Set Test - PART 2 – A flaw in The Plan

Cast and Crew:
Bilbo Baggins played by Peter Jackson (Director/Writer/Executive Producer)
Gandalf head played by Charlie McClellan (Vfx Producer R&D (WETA Digital/digital visual effects designer & creator))
The Ring played by Rick Porras' new wedding band (origin unknown)
Camera operator Brian Van't Hul (Vfx Cinematographer (WETA Digital/digital visual effects designer & creator)


After the switch over from Rick Porras portraying Bilbo for the set Test to Peter, we dive straight-away into our second Test as they perform Bilbo's-packing-to-leave-after-escaping-the Party-only-to-be-confronted-by-Gandalf scene. Rick logs the shot.

.....
Scene12 – Shot 24 – Take 4

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From the get-go, it's apparent Peter has the angles for filming already laid out in his mind; but he couldn't resist playing out the scenes and living in Bag End at this first opportunity. I'm so envious! Here we have a straight shot of the foyer from the floor of the living room. The camera angle is set to watch PJ Bilbo as he comes in the front door and stops to toss the Ring and put it in his pocket.

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PJ Bilbo is walking through Bag End as he's preparing to leave on his long Holiday. He's walking from the back rooms on his way back to the living room, gathering items for his trip. Here is where I'll insert some physical stats that are one of the reasons Peter's doing this walk-through. It's 7 Peter-strides from the first door to first stop on his right ; 6 strides to next pickup at his left. The camera is eye-level with PJ Bilbo, which matches the final scene.

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When PJ Bilbo comes into the front room next to fireplace, he's startled by Gandalf head on a pole standing in the middle of the room. Miraculously, Gandalf head on a pole grows a body that is shielded by his mighty coat! It's 7 strides to the front room with Gandalf head. The camera is sitting just below PJ Bilbo and looks up past him to Gandalf head... which matches the final scene.


Quote
CM Gandalf head: That was in extremely poor taste!



What follows is nearly the complete dialogue between Gandalf and Bilbo as he continues to gather and pack.

larger


PJ Bilbo walks to the chair next to Gandalf head, then kitty-corner to the opposite corner of the room next to front entrance to shelf, Gandalf head pivots... still in the center of the room. It's 6 strides from chair to back corner by the front door.

PJ Bilbo pushes past and adds things to the chair/collection in front of the fireplace. Through PJ Bilbo's entire walkabout, we're at just a little below eye-level with the hobbit (perspective) while Gandalf head towers and pivots, his head just clearing the ceiling in most spots... matching the final scene. It's 6 strides from corner past fireplace to chair and 6 strides from chair to window.

We've just got to stop for a moment and look at how developed the set is. There are spec sheets (specifications for construction) on various places on the walls. Even PJ Bilbo notices them ;) It's obviously still just a shell, but you can already see that paneling is on the walls, the windows are framed out, ceiling beams are up, and the fireplace has the look of brickwork nearly completed. It doesn't take much to imagine what this home will look like in just a few short weeks; and it's comforting to know it still lives on in Peter's back yard.

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But now the camera angles change as Gandalf head asks PJ Bilbo if he's leaving the Ring behind. We move up above Gandalf head's shoulder looking down at PJ Bilbo, and look up from below PJ Bilbo to Gandalf head. Even the close-ups of the hobbit are slightly elevated. The final scene uses both angles of above Bilbo looking down and slightly below Bilbo looking up.

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When PJ Bilbo gets angry, camera angle is slightly tilted and shows things are off balance. The camera angle moves from above PJ Bilbo, to below looking up... but mostly from above looking down. Peter is very into it as he even goes through tying up backpack and slipping it onto back.

When PJ Bilbo's mad and talking about gollum being a miserable wretch, the camera angle is way below PJ Bilbo looking up at him only to shift dramatically up to our explosive Gandalf head.... waving his sleeves in the air! This varies a bit from the final scene except for our exploding Gandalf head. That's spot on! No strides involved.


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As Gandalf head showers his wrath, "Bilbo Baggins! Do not take me for some conjurer of cheap tricks!" There's an interesting camera angle with Van't Hul standing on the window seat up behind Gandalf head looking down past to PJ Bilbo shrinking next to fireplace. Pretty darn close to the final scene.

"I'm not trying to rob you..." has Gandalf head moving down level with PJ Bilbo that is an angle that continues as PJ Bilbo agrees with Gandalf head and moves to go out the front door. It's 7-8 strides from the kitchen doorway to step onto the short hallway and 6 strides from the front room to the door (the hallway).


larger

Now we come to the final scene. As PJ Bilbo makes for the door, Gandalf head reminds him that he's still got the Ring in his pocket. PJ Bilbo struggles to let go of the Ring, then lets it drop. Here's where we have a whole new angle as we're Eye level with the Ring as it hits the floor. Except for that, all of the angles are straight on for PJ Bilbo, and slightly looking up at Gandalf head. Close to the final scene.... with the Ring's POV spot-on. Striderless! The End


So the average distance throughout Bag End from point A to point B is 6 Peter-strides. Just enough time to get something said ;)

7 strides from first back-room door to first stop at right
6 strides to next pickup at his left
7 strides to the front room with Gandalf head
6 strides from chair to back corner by the front door
6 strides from corner past fireplace to chair
6 strides from chair to window
3 steps from chair to fireplace
3 steps across fireplace
7-8 strides from beside the fireplace to the step up and down the short hallway
6 strides from front room to door (the hallway)

1. Did you notice the scale facade of Bag End out front door when PJ Bilbo is talking with Gandalf?

2. Do you think the size/strides of the set layout has some significance to the filming process? The flow or pacing of a scene?

3. Were you surprised that so many of the angles used in this unrehearsed run-through ended up in the final scenes?

Any comments or observations are welcomed :)


END OF PART TWO!

In PART 3 – A flaw in The Plan, we move directly into the opening Test shots with the dialogue between Bilbo and Gandalf after our Hobbit has slipped away from the party and appears inside Bag End...

[[pictures courtesy of The Lord of the Rings Image Library and Screencap Paradise]]


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


Elven
Valinor


May 14 2009, 7:07pm

Post #7 of 15 (1663 views)
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They worked so hard to get this right ... [In reply to] Can't Post

and it shows Smile

WOWeee!! Fantastic post gramma!

Im intruiged that the set is a little more developed - like the fireplace and the panelling.
Maybe the stiding out of the steps also helps the camera movement and where to place things on the day - though once the set is dressed with all its props and tables and so forth, and has the crew it in - maybe Peter is also making a clear path for the actors to walk in and work in, and for the camera to track any of the shots they needed, though they seem pretty well placed as to alot of moving around.
I do like the fact that there was so much preparation and thought about how this process was going to be undertaken at the time of filming, that Peter had so many of the shots he had planned turn up in the film. Right down to how it was edited as well.
Im sure this saved an immense amount of time on the day - and money as well.

And some of Peter's expressions as he plays Bilbo - priceless!

Thankyou gramma! ((hugs))
You put a lot of love into getting that post together!
Much appreciated Heart

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 won’t write ... you can start in the most scholarly website and end up at Paris Hilton dot com .. GdT


Henoluin Elsilim
Rivendell


May 14 2009, 8:19pm

Post #8 of 15 (1661 views)
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Fantastic first two posts [In reply to] Can't Post

gramma! Looking forward to the third one!

I love to see how much the script and things changed from this veeeeeery early point to the final version we see in the movies. I also love PJ's facial expressions as he plays Bilbo.
Something about this makes me want to watch FotR and count just how many strides Bilbo makes in the whole scene, to see if it matches up well with wat PJ did. Wink

~ Henoluin ~

Lord of the Rings

James McAvoy for Bilbo!
Do not meddle in the affairs of dragons for you are crunchy, and good with ketchup


weaver
Half-elven

May 14 2009, 10:26pm

Post #9 of 15 (1628 views)
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You counted the number of strides??? [In reply to] Can't Post

**I bow to your geekiness**

That did help, though, for me to get an idea of the size of the "real" place -- thanks!

What I really want to know is how many hours (days?) it took for you to do these posts on a 6-minute, 33-second feature!

This kind of walking through the set and acting it out strikes me as a different type of "pre-viz" effort by Peter....in the previz/animatics we looked at over the last three weeks, most of them involved scenes with a lot of CGI/effects, or no "real" set, or scenes that would be hard to rehearse "live" like this. In both cases, this set test and the animatics, the results are remarkably close to the final product, so they must really be Jackson's way of getting his bearings to do the actual filming.

What interests me in this case, is that it seems Jackson gets it right on the first take -- we don't see him floundering around saying "ok, let's see, what if I walk over to the mantlepiece first, then the chair" or trying different approaches. So he must have really thought it all through before hand, I guess. Maybe through storyboarding? Or maybe, we just didn't get to see the part where he hits his head on the ceiling and bumps into walls trying to figure it all out!

Weaver





OhioHobbit
Gondor

May 15 2009, 11:31am

Post #10 of 15 (1614 views)
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Peter Strides and Exploding Gandalf Head [In reply to] Can't Post

1. Did you notice the scale facade of Bag End out front door when PJ Bilbo is talking with Gandalf?

Yes, cool!

2. Do you think the size/strides of the set layout has some significance to the filming process? The flow or pacing of a scene?

I don’t know, but an interesting thought.

3. Were you surprised that so many of the angles used in this unrehearsed run-through ended up in the final scenes?

After learning how Peter works, no.

Any comments or observations are welcomed :)

I think that we do have to remember that we only see one take of each scene. You start out with Scene12 – Shot 24 – Take 4. We don’t know what the first 3 takes look like.

I love your terminology, Peter Strides and Exploding Gandalf Head. Laugh
Now, Exploding Gandalf Head sounds like a term that Peter would get a kick out of. Wink

Thanks, Gramma!

Movie Technical Discussion -- Index


grammaboodawg
Immortal


May 15 2009, 4:20pm

Post #11 of 15 (2277 views)
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**FotR eedvd Appendices : Visualizing the Story : Bag End Set Test pt 3 [In reply to] Can't Post

We're in day 3 of my 3-day study of the six minute and thirty-three second Bag End Set Test Featurette. You can still count on pics from the Featurette with the unfinished sets and a shot or two of the developed scenes with the finished set. This time we'll visit Bag End with Frodo and Gandalf... for a moment of Jackson-zen.

We've already conquered PART 1 – The Plan as it followed those first moments of the Test and PART 2 – A flaw in The Plan that tested the camera angles and the dimensions of the set. Now for:
PART 3 – Stick to The Plan... Somebody! that follows the camera angles and the set dimensions as we see that Somebody certainly is testing the set as Planned ;)



Finishing the Featurette: The Bag End Set Test - PART 3 – Stick to The Plan... Somebody!

Cast and Crew:
Gandalf head played by Charlie McClellan (Vfx Producer R&D (WETA Digital/digital visual effects designer & creator))
Frodo Baggins played by Rick Porras (Co-Producer/Associate Director)
Sam Gamgee played by Randy (Randall William) Cook (Effects & Animation Designer/Supervisor (WETA Digital/digital visual effects designer & creator))
The Ring played by Rick Porras' new wedding band (origin unknown)
Camera operator Brian Van't Hul (Vfx Cinematographer (WETA Digital/digital visual effects designer & creator)
Directed by Peter Jackson (Director/Writer/Executive Producer)


Once again Rick Porras signals the start of the Bag End set test. The scene used in this Test is Frodo offering Gandalf the Ring; and Sam being caught eaves dropping.
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This time we have a really good look at the kitchen... and a new prop! There's a table set up in front of the big window. With the camera angle starting in the front room next to the table, we have a hobbit-level look at RP Frodo and Gandalf head leaving the well-lit kitchen and crossing the room to the table. RP Frodo's destination shows a closeup of the Ring at an angle that is slightly raised and nearly matched to when the Ring was dropped on the floor as PJ Bilbo left Bag End.

The camera angle is now well-established... low, looking up to Gandalf head, and is up, looking down to RP Frodo to maintain the proper big/small perspective of these two characters. I'm not counting strides on this journey because, imho, no one can top a Peter-stride!

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Ahhhh... but now we come to it! Gandalf head and RP Frodo hear something outside the window! Gandalf head grabs his trusty broom... I mean, staff... and cautiously makes his way to the window. Gandalf head appears to magically split into two bodies then re-unites into one as he knocks the culprit with his broom/staff and drags a befuddled, blustering RC Sam into the room and slams him onto the table. The layout of the window to table ratio seems satisfactory and matches the final scene.



One thing about this test that threw me for a moment was that the chronology of this scene shifted from what we know showing Frodo planning to hide the Ring, to asking Gandalf if anyone knows about it, to offering Gandalf the Ring and changing it to what was one of the original chronological steps of planning to hide the Ring, to offering it to Gandalf, to asking if anyone knows about it. Both versions are followed up with Sam getting busted at the window.

1. Did you notice the shift in the chronology of the scene?

Conclusion:

So there you have it. A successful Test of the Set that dispels any concerns, if you ask me. During these trial runs, we visited 3 scenes that were all used in The Fellowship of the Ring. Bilbo being affected by the Ring; Bilbo and Gandalf's discussion before Bilbo leaves; and Gandalf, Frodo and Sam as Frodo learns more about the Ring.

2. Do you think there were more of these scenes filmed as part of the Test?

3. Do you think Peter chose these scenes for any specific reason? Would you like to see more? *twitch*

I became so fascinated watching Bag End morph from wood and lights to the warm, rich home I know and would love to spend the rest of my life in, that I've snagged a few more pics for comparisons and that are just plain nice to look at... including one of the best pics I've seen of Gandalf in the hobbit-sized room that really shows off the scale.


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Another neat one

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I thought I would come away with some more eye-popping questions; but, alas... I'm just left with a grateful sigh for having this fantastic Featurette made available to us. Peter Jackson's excitement and enthusiasm really are infectious, as we've witnessed in this instance of one set being completed. Granted... it is "THE ONE" set, but I'm sure he got geeked many times over during production.

Please share your thoughts, impressions and wisdom of what this reality testing of Bag End may have accomplished as one step (or stride) in the filming process of The Lord of the Rings.

Thank you for your indulgence and participation. Lurkers are ALWAYS welcome and equally appreciated!

*HUGS* Y'all!

Fin

[[pictures courtesy of The Lord of the Rings Image Library and Screencap Paradise]]




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"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


OhioHobbit
Gondor

May 16 2009, 4:50pm

Post #12 of 15 (1559 views)
Shortcut
Hanging around Bag End. [In reply to] Can't Post

1. Did you notice the shift in the chronology of the scene?

I think that I noticed it, but I didn’t pay that much attention to it. I noticed the change in dialog more.

2. Do you think there were more of these scenes filmed as part of the Test?

Oh, I bet that there were a lot of scenes filmed as part of this test.

3. Do you think Peter chose these scenes for any specific reason? Would you like to see more?

I think that Michael Pellerin probably chose the scenes and I think that he was both trying to tell a story and be entertaining. Would I like to see more? I could watch this stuff all day. Maybe I just like hanging around Bag End. Smile

This was great! I loved the pictures you chose, particularly the ones comparing the Test with the actual, and the one showing the completed parlor is wonderful.

Thanks, Gramma!

Movie Technical Discussion -- Index

(This post was edited by OhioHobbit on May 16 2009, 4:51pm)


Elven
Valinor


May 16 2009, 11:18pm

Post #13 of 15 (1556 views)
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Great Bag End Finale! .. [In reply to] Can't Post

It has been a wonderful 3 days peeking into Bag End and wandering through the process with you as our guide Gramma Smile
What could be better! Thankyou for all the caps and the little details you picked up about the set.
and yes, I too feel we are so lucky and for able to have the featurette as well. 3 cheers!

Thanks Gramma Smile

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 won’t write ... you can start in the most scholarly website and end up at Paris Hilton dot com .. GdT


weaver
Half-elven

May 18 2009, 6:20pm

Post #14 of 15 (1541 views)
Shortcut
I love that shot of Gandalf that you included... [In reply to] Can't Post

This one!



Can't you just see 13 dwarves in this room with him, talking about their plans? And Bilbo quivering over there by the fire?

Like you, I enjoy seeing how they went from the "bare bones" of the set and script and crew stand-ins to the final version. You also made me think about how things like how they moved about in the set, the distances involved, the angles, etc. all needed to be thought through to make it work. The way you presented it really helped me to get a feel for all of those things, and how they contribute to the final product. It's one of those things that in the end appears to be so seamless that it seems natural and easy, but clearly, a lot of work (and a bit of fun!) went into this...

Gramma, you deserve a good smoke with Gandalf after all of this! Thanks for a grand week!





Weaver





grammaboodawg
Immortal


May 19 2009, 2:19pm

Post #15 of 15 (1593 views)
Shortcut
Thanks :) And thank you ALL for your insights and kindnesses!! // [In reply to] Can't Post

 


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

 
 

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