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The One Ring Forums: Tolkien Topics: Movie Discussion: The Hobbit:
Some things TORn staffers were excited to see in PJ's 'sneak peek'

News from Bree

Mar 24 2013, 11:02pm

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This afternoon many of us spent an hour with Peter Jackson (well, virtually, anyway!) as he chatted about making The Hobbit movies, and gave us some tantalising glimpses of what may be to come in the second film, The Desolation of Smaug. We've already posted some detailed commentary on what was shown; here below are some of the things which made TORn staffers geek out, as they watched their computer screens - and some speculation on what these things might mean!

greendragon: Of course I would be excited about something to do with a dragon! It seemed to me that we saw Smaug's "laser eyes" in part of the footage - a scene was shown where Martin Freeman was playing around with putting the ring on, in Smaug's lair. The lighting was red, shining on a specific area and then moving across the pile of gold - suggesting the "piercing ray of red from under the drooping lid of Smaug's left eye." It was nice to see this glimpse of the power of Smaug's eyes - the danger of the dragon-spell!

Demosthenes: The actual extended scene we were shown from The Desolation of Smaug was of Gandalf and Radagast visiting the Nazgul tombs. Okay, this has me excited because there's a heap of spoiler analysis and guesswork that we can all play with. Who built the tombs? If they were built by the Dunedain of Arnor (the selfsame Dunedain who never make an appearance in the film of the Lord of the Rings, I might say!), then why does Radagast call the sigils on the walls foul? [In the clip, we see engraving on the walls above a door of a tomb, the bars of which have been wrenched or blasted open.] Is that an implication that they were built by the Dunedain of Rhudaur who fell into evil with the realm of Angmar? And what do the tengwar letters -- for they are a type of tengwar -- say? Do they bind? Do they nurture? Is it a transliteration to English? Or is it in Adunaic, Quenya or Sindarin?

Why are they in the high fells (of Rhudaur)? What could have possibly prompted both Gandalf and Radagast to travel back over the Misty Mountains to investigate? Lots of questions -- lots of opportunity to guess stuff! Moreover, I'm buzzed that Gandalf says there are NINE tombs. It's what I guessed when I first saw this sequence last year, and I also felt that the bars indicated that whoever was in there broke out, and that there were letters over those doorways.

Rasputin the Evil Balrog: The boat scene got me excited [where we saw the dwarves, Bilbo and Bard on a boat, together with a collection of barrels], combined with what Peter had to say about the character of Bard being enigmatic - we don't know if he's good or bad. It reminded me of the way they chose to create Faramir's character in The Two Towers, giving him much more depth and motivation than I feel he has in the books. A lot of book purists disagree with me because they like the fact that Faramir is presented as the archetype of the ever-noble hero, but I thought the way they played him was much more modern and interesting. I think we're going to see something similar with Bard. In the book, he's set in opposition to the debauched, corrupt master of Laketown, but it seems like Peter is implying that we'll get a few more twists and turns to our Bard story!

: In the various glimpses of scenes between Thranduil and his son Legolas, it was interesting to see that there might be a conflict between father and son regarding the way the dwarves are treated. Although he's not in the book, I had expected Legolas to go along with his father - it would explain why he and Gimli aren't on friendly terms when the Fellowship is first formed. Could this difference of opinion lead Legolas (and Tauriel?) to help the dwarves and Bilbo escape Mirkwood?

grammaboodawg: To see Legolas with his father, Thranduil, is incredible! After years of imagining Legolas in Mirkwood and in a relationship with his father, this shot has had a profound impact on me. Like seeing the White Council...it's exciting to have the imagined moments of this story finally becoming real. Also, in one of the moments where we saw Bilbo in Smaug's lair, there was an interesting glow at Bilbo's right hand. Could it be the Arkenstone??

kelvarhin: The thing I was most excited about was seeing the concept drawings of Mirkwood, by Weta artist Gus Hunter. I've always envisaged it as being all twisted trees, dark and very menacing, and those images nailed it perfectly. Can't wait to see the finished images on the big screen.

Demosthenes: The beautiful concept artwork by John Howe which we were shown, for the entrance to Thranduil's realm in Mirkwood, is almost identical to Alan Lee's painting of Menegroth - which can be seen here . This is particularly cool because, for Tolkien, Menegroth was probably a template of sorts for the Halls of the Elven King as first described in The Hobbit. I'm pretty sure that if you go back as far as the Book of Lost Tales there is some description of the halls of Tinwelint the elf/gnome king that has a similarity to The Hobbit -- that bridge over the river particularly.

elessar: I was excited to see more of Mirkwood, Legolas, Thranduril, and Tauriel. Today's event gave us plenty of that to look at, and while it wasn't finished you can start to put that mental image together. I've had a mental image of what I thought Mirkwood looked like and what we saw felt like it was pulled directly from my brain! I loved seeing Legolas in action, and I love the look he has in this movie - mostly because it's going to show the giant leap Legolas makes from The Hobbit to The Lord of the Rings. Seeing Thranduil in all his glory was fantastic, and I loved the scene of him getting in Thorin's face, adding more to why Elves and Dwarves don't like each other. Tauriel also looked awesome and I think I'm going to really like this character. A scene with her, Legolas, Thranduil, and an Orc looks like it will be really good. I did enjoy the Gandalf/Radagast sequence and am eager to see how the continued addition of this plot line runs. Mostly, I just loved spending an hour watching things to come. Is it December yet??

So much excitement - and we haven't even seen a proper trailer yet!! If you missed the Peter Jackson hosted first look at The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug, or just want to watch it over again, a modified version will be archived on the Trilogy's official website www.thehobbit.com/sneak

To access the footage, use your UltraViolet code on your copy The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey Blu-ray Combo Pack, Blu-ray 3D Combo Pack or 2-Disc Special Edition DVD.

(This post was edited by Silverlode on Mar 25 2013, 6:29am)


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