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The One Ring Forums: Tolkien Topics: Movie Discussion: The Hobbit:
TORN's Exclusive Interview with Guillermo Del Toro
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Apr 27 2008, 12:03am

Post #76 of 128 (28363 views)
Quite the contrary- [In reply to] Can't Post

I shouldnt have posted so hastily- I noticed many errors in the text- I'm ashamed. I corrected it a touch, but the syntax and perhaps the spelliing, elude me at this hour (1 am, London time) so here it ia again, with new errors at least...

Thank you all for a warm welcome.

Allow me to introduce myself quite summarily - I was born 43 years ago in Guadalajara, a large city in Mexico.

Since the age of 4 I became an avid reader and collector of books; manuscripts, pamphlets, first editions, small press or worn-down paperbacks... they all find a home at my library which has grown so cumbersome and obtrusive that I had to move to a separate home from the family one...

For many decades my main area of interest has been horror fiction: Algernon Blackwood, Arthur Machen, MR James, LeFanu, etc and classic Fairy tales and literature about the engines of Myth: unabridged Grimm, Andersen, Wilde, Bettelheim, Tatar, etc

Now and then I indulge in Science Fiction (not hardware oriented but more humanistic things) and thus I count Bradbury, Ellison, Sturgeon and Matheson amongst my favorites.

My area of interest gets much narrower when we deal with another genre... the genre that is shelved under Fantasy.

I have read Moorcock, Clark Ashton Smith, Lord Dunsany, Lloyd Alexander, Fritz Leiber and a few others. At the age of 11 I read THE HOBBIT and it enchanted me as only a classic Fairy Tale can- it had enough darkness and dread and emotion to make a profound impression that lasted me until now. Beorn, Mirkwood, the Wargs, Smaug, the Riddles in the Dark, they all have lived in me for many years...

Nevertheless at that early age, the rest of Tolkien proved to contain Geography and Genealogy too complex for my prepubescent brain...

I was never propelled into an aleatory addiction to sub-genres like Sword & Sorcery or indiscriminate fantasies about magical this or that- Like any other genre or subgenre there's a great abundance that makes it hard to discern when a new "trilogy" or "chronicle" comes from as genuine a place as Tolkien's or derives from genuine fervor -religious or otherwise- like C.S. Lewis' did.

And here I am now: reading like a madman to catch up with a whole new land, a continent of sorts- a Cosmology created by brilliant philologist turned Shaman.

As if he grasped an existing universe outside our Platonic cave, Tolkien channels an entire world, weaving expertly from myth and lore. The oustanding virtue is that all this scholarly erudition doesn't reduce his tales to mere Taxidermy. He achieves an Alchemy all of his own: he writes new life in the freshly sculpted clay of his creatures.

I have, through the years become familiar with the very roots of Tolkien's myths and the roots of Fafhrd or Elric or Hyperborea and many a time I have relished the intricate ways in which demonic wolves, shape-shifter and spindly-limbed pale warriors can be woven into those many tales that become, at the end, the single tale, the single saga- that of what is immortal in us all.

In creating Pan's Labyrinth I drank deep of the most rigid form of Fairy Lore and tried to contextualize the main recurrent motifs in an instinctive rhyme between the world of fantasy and the delusions of War and Politics (the grown man's way of playing make-believe) and in re-reading THE HOBBIT just recently I was quite moved by discovering, through Bilbo's eyes the illusory nature of possession, the sins of hoarding and the banality of war- whether in the Western Front or at a Valley in Middle Earth. Lonely is the mountain indeed.

And now, I'm here- about to live amongst you for many years to come and it is my dearest hope to push and expand the filmic incarnation of these Myths: Emotionally, visually and in their resonance within all of us. Whising me luck won't be enough- therefore I invite you to join us in another beautiful place created by on Parker Lyons, namely-


-and to become acquainted with my many flaws and the error of my ways, for I am -much like a Hobbit or a foul Dwarf- a mere mortal facing an enormous task ahead.

May the task become lighter by receiving the blessing of your trust .

Yr Obt Svt.

Guillermo del Toro

N.E. Brigand

Apr 27 2008, 12:09am

Post #77 of 128 (19594 views)
No worries! [In reply to] Can't Post

Thank you for taking the trouble to re-post, but please don't worry about it -- there is no expectation of typo-free posting at TORN!

We're discussing The Lord of the Rings in the Reading Room, Oct. 15, 2007 - Mar. 22, 2009!

Join us Apr. 21-27 for "The Uruk-hai".

Optimus Prime
Registered User

Apr 27 2008, 12:12am

Post #78 of 128 (19711 views)
RE: Quite the contrary [In reply to] Can't Post

You have Peter's trust, Guillermo. And with that, I'm pretty sure you have all of ours! We're happy to have you aboard to lead us on this new, earlier journey!

In the meantime, I myself, can't wait for Hellboy II!



(This post was edited by Optimus Prime on Apr 27 2008, 12:17am)

Forum Admin / Moderator

Apr 27 2008, 12:18am

Post #79 of 128 (19013 views)
I admit I'm intrigued [In reply to] Can't Post

to see how a storyteller with your background knowledge of faerie and mythology will retell The Hobbit - and I'm very much looking forward to seeing your film on screen. Good luck with this project! And as a Kiwi, I hope you and your family enjoy your time in New Zealand. :)

Celebrimbor: "Pretty rings..."
Dwarves: "Pretty rings..."
Men: "Pretty rings..."
Sauron: "Mine's better."

"Ah, how ironic, the addictive qualities of Sauronís master weapon led to its own destruction. Which just goes to show, kids - if you want two small and noble souls to succeed on a mission of dire importance... send an evil-minded b*****d with them too." - Gandalf's Diaries, final par, by Ufthak.

Ataahua's stories

Forum Admin / Moderator

Apr 27 2008, 12:38am

Post #80 of 128 (19220 views)
Kia ora and haere mai! [In reply to] Can't Post

Which is Maori for "greetings and welcome", though kia ora has many more layers of meaning than mere greetings.

We are honoured to have you here on TORn, and I'm delighted that you're going to base yourself in New Zealand for such a long time!

My writing (including The Passing of Mistress Rose)

Do we find happiness so often that we should turn it off the box when it happens to sit there?

- A Room With a View


Apr 27 2008, 1:17am

Post #81 of 128 (19227 views)
*hands GdT trust on a plate* [In reply to] Can't Post

No worries here. Very pleased and looking forward to what you create for us!

"The person who strives for security will never be free. The person who believes that she's found security will never reach paradise."
- Tom Robbins

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

Registered User

Apr 27 2008, 1:41am

Post #82 of 128 (19101 views)
Hi there! [In reply to] Can't Post

Since this is my first post on this forum I will like to say hello to you all, and to GDT I would like to say I couldnít be happier knowing that you ( Heart your work) and Peter would directing the Hobbit. Cool

As Iím not an expert in Hobbit/LOTR subject Blush just a film and collector geek from Norway Iím going to stay low and listening Öjust wanted to say hi. Wink



Apr 27 2008, 2:10am

Post #83 of 128 (19292 views)
My goodness! [In reply to] Can't Post

HOW are you going to finish the last stages of HB2 with reading TORN? Wink j/k....it's an honor to have you here.

No need to talk of trust here.....I have that. But I would like to note that for some others who are not as familar (yet) with you or your work, it will seem hard for them to believe that you can fill the formidable shoes of Peter, Fran and Philippa.
We know you can do it, and it is for them to become familiar with the worlds you have rendered so far onscreen....worlds full of "beauty and terror and meaning", (as W.H. Auden wrote in his review of LOTR...I beleive it was him, though I could be wrong)

Allow me to note, though, that (as Gramma and others have said) that adapting Tolkien is a VERY formidable task, and only the greatest of artists in modern cinematic history are capable of doing it successfully. This is a job for the Greats of the Cinematic Peathon: a Cocteau, a Spieberg, a Coppola, a Kubrick, a Hitchcock, a Kurasowa, a Miazaki, a Ray.......and yes, a Peter Jackson. (there are many other Greats of the Silver Screen I could name, but to list them all would take up too much space!) .
(Pan's Labyrinth reminded me so much of Cocteau's Beauty and the Beast, which one of my all-time favorite films. It had that same feeling of the Gateway to the Fantastical leading into a realm that was not as far away as we think. And it put you, in my mind, on the path to becoming one of the Greats.)

The eyes of the world will be upon you these next four years (or five?) and we have VERY high expectations. People like myself who are familiar with your work so far, know and understand that you are up to the task. But Tolkien fans are, either way around, a passionate bunch and we guard the Professor's legacy VERY closely. We welcome you, but I should warn you that (I have to be honest) even after all these years, there are many passionate defenders of the books, who take fidelity to them VERY seriously. There are those who will not hestitate to raise questions and air opinions. Some of these people have done so already, as you have doubtless now become aware. And they will continue to do so, in the months and years ahead. We are fully aware, in light of the current circumstances of the lawsuit brought by the Tolkien Estate, of the graciousness by which we have been allowed to see these stories made possible ion film. So,we cherish them highly.

So: the eyes of the world will be upon you for the next few years, Sir. We hope you begin to realize the magnitude of the task you have set yourself to.Someday, it will sink in. I am sure that Peter Jackson has filled you in on just how formidable a task it will be, in all ways. But I for one know that you can do it.

Oh, and BTW: I have been a longtime lurker on your excellent site. This site has quite a history behind it, as Peter has no doubt made you aware. Another excellent place to find out about the history of this website is film scholar Kristin Thompson's wonderful book The Frodo Franchise. She has a great website too.

Thanks for taking the time from your busy schedule to post, and good luck with HB2!

(This post was edited by Sunflower on Apr 27 2008, 2:18am)

The Shire

Apr 27 2008, 2:20am

Post #84 of 128 (18883 views)
You Have My Trust! [In reply to] Can't Post

You have my trust, Guillermo.

And don't worry one bit about typos around here! You're gonna be far too busy to worry about such a thing!

It's a geat honor that you'd join the community here. Thank you so much.


Apr 27 2008, 2:29am

Post #85 of 128 (19300 views)
Geez Louise, did I just write that?:) [In reply to] Can't Post

I hope nobody chews me out for that post....the Edit feature timed out....*shrinks in her chair* (if Del Toro reads that...Dios mio....BlushCrazyLaugh)

well, I am honest, I DO think he will be one of the Greats....as Kurasowa was to his country and Coppola and Spielberg were to ours, etc.)

And I DO think that with LOTR , PJ elevated himself to one of the cinematic Greats.

If anyone wants to flame me for that opinion, please PM me. Sly


Apr 27 2008, 2:44am

Post #86 of 128 (19508 views)
We've been waiting for you. [In reply to] Can't Post

Isn't it amazing what each of us here has gone through to bring us to this moment in the evolution of Tolkien's stories? Just today, I was picturing you becoming the newest member of that New Zealand filmic family. It has to be such a unique experience to step into their world and find that you fit right in :) It must be surreal, at the same time, to also be facing us... this madly opinionated and enthusiastic group of fans with all sorts of questions, ideas and expectations.

As a fan myself of The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit for 37 years, who saw the LotR films at the theatre an average of 58 times (each), and having seen Pan's Labyrinth (with your commentary) and watched Hellboy more times than I can count, I'm delighted to have you as director of these films! Peter Jackson's confidence in you and what you can achieve together is all I need to believe that we're all in for one fantastic adventure!

Thank you for visiting us here. I think you know it's a thrill to count you as an official TORn sibbie (sibling). Sorry, there's no escape. You're one of US now!

Welcome :D

sample sample
Trust him... The Hobbit is coming!

"Barney Snow was here." ~Hug like a hobbit!~ "In my heaven..."

TORn's Observations Lists

The Shire

Apr 27 2008, 3:14am

Post #87 of 128 (19204 views)
It's true [In reply to] Can't Post

No, Sunflower. I think it's honest and true. Fans, especially posting anonymously behind their computer screens, can be extremely critical. Guillermo may hear that a change of his to the book "sucks". That he's destroyed the childhood of every fan. That Bilbo would never do this or that. Whatever. It's the way fans get on forums about many things. I hope everyone around here is able to keep it civil all the way through the 2nd movie.

At the same time, i'm sure Guillermo Del Toro understands that the series is precious to fans. I think he'll follow his heart in doing what he feels best for his film with that in mind. The same way that Fran, Phillipa and Peter did, and we have to understand that some things that work well in a book may not work the best in a movie. They made some changes that might not have been popular with some book purirsts. But i'll be darned, they made the movies as entertaining, dramatic and satisfying as they could be, i feel. No, Frodo isn't "supposed to" tell Sam to go home. But what an effective change that was for the movie. Easily one of my favorite scenes. So, it's best to just do what Guillermo asks, trust him, and let it play out on screen in 2010.

In Reply To
I hope nobody chews me out for that post....the Edit feature timed out....*shrinks in her chair* (if Del Toro reads that...Dios mio....BlushCrazyLaugh)

well, I am honest, I DO think he will be one of the Greats....as Kurasowa was to his country and Coppola and Spielberg were to ours, etc.)

And I DO think that with LOTR , PJ elevated himself to one of the cinematic Greats.

If anyone wants to flame me for that opinion, please PM me. Sly


Apr 27 2008, 3:20am

Post #88 of 128 (19325 views)
*faints..THUNK* [In reply to] Can't Post

A post like THAT, addressed to GDT, and I made a mistake. I just realized that it was C.S. Lewis who wrote that quote, not Auden.

*oh God*

*I am going to go hide in a box now*

The Shire

Apr 27 2008, 3:31am

Post #89 of 128 (19039 views)
Thank you [In reply to] Can't Post

Thank you for being so open with the fans! Every time you confide your thoughts to us, I become more certain that you are going to do great things with these films. But I must say I'm a little jealous, since you'll be burrying yourself in Tolkien for quite some time! I love what you've said about the second film. I think it's quite brilliant. There is such an endless wealth of events happening in this time period, that the film will only be limited by your imagination. This could be an incredibly powerful story on its own. I'm just sad that you won't be allowed to utilize Tolkien's other works.

(to everyone) Unfinished Tales has some really great moments that would be perfect for the film, don't you think? Part three of "the hunt for the ring" contains one of my favorite scenes, a discussion between Gandalf and Saruman about pipeweed and hobbits, ending with a cryptic gesture by Gandalf, hinting that he knows what's going on in Saruman's mind. It would be perfect in the movie (though it takes place before the Hobbit), since it shows so effectively the relationship between the two wizards and the state of Saruman's mind in those years... but oh well, with all the stuff in the appendix, it'll still be fantastic. We all believe in you, Mr. Del Toro!

(This post was edited by Telperion313 on Apr 27 2008, 3:32am)


Apr 27 2008, 3:35am

Post #90 of 128 (19337 views)
Well, honestly.... [In reply to] Can't Post

(guessing that he's probably not on here as I write this...but you never know! We'll have to watch ourselves now!Tongue)

I have to say that if you have been lurking the past few months, you'll have noted my positive opinions of GDT. I was never skeptical of him...just the Studios. When I first heard that PJ was not going to direct, I was QUITE upset. Then, as the lawsuits and writer's strike and shenanigans grew worse, I resigned myself to the fact that he would not be directing...but Del Toro's name popped in my mind. I saw PL when it was out in the theaters in the fall of 2006, I believe. That film knocked me six ways to Sunday...it qas one of the great cinematic experences of my life (subtitles and all.) I grew more and more excited and as time passed, began to grow quite excited.

But I have to be honest about his latest post. Did anyone get the feeling that he felt there, that he needed to "prove" himself? I think he's been doing a lot of surfing the past few days (sounds like it), and has had time to read the posts of the vocal doubters. Thus, he poured himself out in a great little film essay. Th't's the way he usually discusses film...(the DVD commentary for his films, but esp for PL, he talks just like this. IMO, this is what a DVD commentary by Hitchcock or Kurasowa or Cocteau would be like, if they were alive and made DVD.s More's the pity they're not.) Oh, and I forgot to mention Ingmar Bergman???? (oddly enough, LOTr at its best makes me think of him.)

So his beginning to post on here is not only a sign of the great guy he is, it's great politics as well. I wonder if he wonders if we will ever get over the "wow" factor and address him with challenging questions. I have faith in him, but would you say I was presumptuous in trying to "prepare" him for the controversy that may come down the road? I am just being honest.... I happen to be a "PJ supporter" (as many are on this board), but there are others who are not. IN ANY way at all. There aren't many on this site, but I can think of other sites that would be far less merciful. (Should I direct GDT to TORC? He he)

(This post was edited by Sunflower on Apr 27 2008, 3:38am)

Finding Frodo
Tol Eressea

Apr 27 2008, 3:45am

Post #91 of 128 (19063 views)
Wow [In reply to] Can't Post

Welcome to TORn, Mr. Del Toro, and welcome again, I say. I'm feeling a bit overwhelmed even by the fact of your posting, not to mention the length and depth of your posts. Thank you for your presence and thoughtful attention. Though I have not read many of the authors you mentioned, I do share your love for fairy tales and of course The Hobbit in particular. Like you, I also failed in my first few attempts to read The Lord of the Rings when I was young, though I have read it many times since then!

Thank you also for the invitation to visit your website. I ventured over and explored a little bit. I especially enjoyed your comments on fairy stories (and I love the parallel with JRRT) and the pages from your sketchbook. So far, "Pan's Labyrinth" is the only movie of yours that I have seen, but I plan to check out some of the others while waiting for Hobbit news. I'm very excited that things are getting underway at last!

Where's Frodo?


Apr 27 2008, 4:02am

Post #92 of 128 (19201 views)
PPS. [In reply to] Can't Post

When I say "PJ supporter" I mean that I am in the camp that thinks PJ did a fantastic job with the films and that his version was probably the best that Hollywood could have offered at the time (as opposed to those who think that someone else could have done a better job.) Which makes me a great PJ fan.

It does NOT mean, Kapoof, that I support PJ over GDT, for sentimental reasons or anything else. "PJ supporter" is a term commonly used in arguments with Tolkien book purists.

I am just as excited about Del Toro as you are. Just trying to warn him about the ones who will be critics!


Apr 27 2008, 4:09am

Post #93 of 128 (19184 views)
In New Zealand there is a Maori proverb which says: [In reply to] Can't Post

He aha te mea nui o te ao?
He tangata! He tangata! He tangata!

Which means:
what is the most important thing in the world?
It is people! It is people! It is people!

Thank you sir, for the genuine care and consideration you are showing to the people who have so much invested in the making of these films.


Apr 27 2008, 5:15am

Post #94 of 128 (19125 views)
Thank you [In reply to] Can't Post

Wow, thanks so much for another post, Mr. Del Toro! It still just stuns me to see you here! Makes me feel so close to the real happenings and magic of this movie that's coming about. And as others have said, you have no need to worry about typos or spelling mistakes... we've all been through it, and we're all quite capable of overlooking things like that. And you've got much bigger things to be concerned about right now! lol

And, again like the others have already said, you have my trust. You've already proven yourself a great deal, by really showing us your true, heartfelt dedication. So I trust you with this task of making The Hobbit as we would all like to see it made. Smile

Peredhil lover

Apr 27 2008, 5:40am

Post #95 of 128 (19096 views)
Don't worry, Sunflower [In reply to] Can't Post

It was a nice post, honest and open. And you complimented him, so what's the problem?

As for fans - I suppose GDT is probably aware that these can be difficult, that some will flame the movies and some love them, as it is with every movie. Or do you know *one* movie where *everyone* was of the exact same opinion about it? Wink

I do not suffer from LotR obsession - I enjoy every minute of it.

Peredhil lover

Apr 27 2008, 5:47am

Post #96 of 128 (19080 views)
Well [In reply to] Can't Post

No matter the purpose, it is great that GDT is taking the time to read and post here at all. I appreciate this attempt to communicate with the fans and to reassure us so very much!
And if he has lurked a bit, I am sure he is already warned what a passionate bunch the LotR fans can be! You shouldn't forget that the Hobbit will not be the first Tolkien film, but that the trilogy is already made, and he surely knows the different reactions the first three films got.

I do not suffer from LotR obsession - I enjoy every minute of it.

Registered User

Apr 27 2008, 6:24am

Post #97 of 128 (19159 views)
NZ for a week - miss Oz and go straight to NZ [In reply to] Can't Post

In Reply To
80% sure to tack about a week in New Zealand while we're there. It looks like I might have some great locations to see - and maybe even locations in use!

You'll need longer than a week - I am hoping to be home again by then; but you'll need at least three weeks if not four to see it all properly; I know miss Australia bit out

Lost Hobbit

Apr 27 2008, 11:55am

Post #98 of 128 (19153 views)
Hello to the director himself [In reply to] Can't Post

Hello, Mr. Del Toro. Let me thank you for agreement to make Hobbit movie. It's a great responsibility and great chance to give the world what it was waiting for since people heard someone was making a new film version of Tolkiens work - and it became Peter and when we heard it was going to be Lotr, we wondered, what would happen to The Hobbit. It's so amazing and it will be fantastic experience for you to conduct this great team. I myself come from country of Georgia, which was part of USSR and Hobbit was published in Russia in 70s or 80s (i don't exactly remember) and it was very well received. There is only one book published in my language (georgian) - and it's Hobbit.And this year one of the publishings is preparing a new translation of the book. It will be a great chance for out readers to get into Tolkien once more, but the main thing is that they will know what they are going to watch when they will attend the premiere of the movie. I really can't wait to see it. And of course, it's very nice you want to keep in touch with the fans via this board.
P.s.: Everybody hope Andy will still be Gollum. I suppose, he will appear two times in the movie - in the cave and maybe in the appendixes? :)


Apr 27 2008, 11:56am

Post #99 of 128 (18956 views)
By the way [In reply to] Can't Post

Did you notice that the day Peter and you made your announcement that the films were a go was April 25th in NZ, and that it was the date that Gandalf met Bilbo on the front porch of Bag End and discussed adventures? Just a coincidental treasure I thought you'd enjoy. :)

Fateful and magical! It's a sign!!!

sample sample
Trust him... The Hobbit is coming!

"Barney Snow was here." ~Hug like a hobbit!~ "In my heaven..."

TORn's Observations Lists

The Shire

Apr 27 2008, 1:50pm

Post #100 of 128 (18963 views)
The Hobbit 2 [In reply to] Can't Post

In the second film, linking The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings, I wonder if there would be a decent way to fit 'The Scouring of the Shire' in somewhere, without confusion to those who haven't read the books. Those who have read the books, however, will be very happy to see that chapter added, I'm sure. It was an important detail in The Return of the King that would have made the film too long for most people to sit through, I suppose. So it might make since to add it to The Hobbit's sequel.

Have good fortune on the journey ahead. Namarie!

I would have gone with you to the end, into the very fires of Mordor.

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