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Enhanced Lord of the Rings movies cast from the best performances across all of the adaptations

Registered User

Jan 22 2018, 11:25pm

Post #1 of 6 (1860 views)
Enhanced Lord of the Rings movies cast from the best performances across all of the adaptations Can't Post

We recently rewatched Jackson's LOTR films to introduce them to our youngest daughter, who loved them. Talking about them afterwards with my wife and my eldest son, we got to talking about how superb most of the cast members are, yet also how we felt actors in other adaptations - animation, radio and TV - might have nailed certain characters even better, including people in "Hobbit" adaptations playing characters who appear in LOTR.

To that end, I drew up a sort of enhanced LOTR movie cast drawing in my favourite actor in each part. (I have cheated by including a couple of actors I love from the 1955 radio adaptation that is long lost).

The changes I would make for my "dream team" would be:

Gandalf - John Huston (from the Rankin/Bass cartoons) I adore Ian McKellen, yet I am even more a fan of John Huston, and I feel his take on Gandalf might prove even closer to my own vision of the character.

Frodo - Christopher Guard (from the 1978 animated film) Wood was fine, yet Guard, being British, would be even better, and less "emo".

Bilbo - Bernard Cribbins (from the 1979 "Jackanory" reading of "The Hobbit") Ian Holm is wonderful, yet Bernard Cribbins is even more lovable.

Tom Bombadil and Goldberry - Ian Hogg and Sorcha Cusack (from the BBC radio "Tales from the Perilous Realm" dramatisations.) Both superb actors and I'd love to see these characters restored.

Legolas - give Orlando Bloom the voice of Anthony Daniels (from the Bakshi film) Bloom's voice is a bit dull.

Aragorn - give Viggo Mortensen the voice of John Hurt (from the Bakshi film). Mortensen's voice is a bit too whispery/weak/dreamy.

Elrond - André Morell (from the 1978 animated film, too) Hugo Weaving just did not work for me.

Gollum - David Wood (from the "Jackanory" reading) Serkis is good, but Wood was even better, and with no CGI to rely on.

Grima Wormtongue - Paul Brooke (from the 1981 radio version) Dourif was too hammily creepy to be convincing; Brooke is a finer actor.

Denethor - Peter Vaughan (from the 1981 radio series) John Noble was terrible, whereas Vuaghan is a British all-time great.

Ioreth - include Prunella Scales (from the 1955 radio version) Wonderful actress who played a character I'd love to see back in the film.

Treebeard - Valentine Dyall (from the 1955 radio series) John Rhys-Davies voice did not convince, perhaps as he was also Gimli.

Shagrat - Christoper Fairbank (from the 1981 radio series) A fine actor, though the film version was pretty good, too.

What do you think? Feel free to propose your own.


Jan 23 2018, 5:29am

Post #2 of 6 (1826 views)
I am not familiar with some of the actors you mention so I cannot say yay or nay [In reply to] Can't Post

I think casting for the films as overall been excellent. Could other actors have succeeded? Sure, I imagine had others been selected we would be in the same situation wondering how anyone could play the role. John Huston had a great voice, but it was American and I prefer the parts to have at least an Englishy accent. Viggo was a great find, however, I think he struggles with the Morannon speech scene as his voice becomes thin and reedy. It just lacks the depth for that scene.

To this day, I imagine a young Clint Eastwood's Man With No Name as the perfect model for Aragorn.


(This post was edited by Eruonen on Jan 23 2018, 5:32am)


Jan 23 2018, 5:35am

Post #3 of 6 (1821 views)
This is perfect - The Knight With No Name [In reply to] Can't Post


Registered User

Jan 23 2018, 7:37am

Post #4 of 6 (1808 views)
Check out some of the other adaptations I mention [In reply to] Can't Post

Clint is an intriguing idea. I actually thought back in the 90s that he would have made an interesting Theoden.

I do see what you mean about Huston, too.

I really recommend investigating the other adaptations I mention, all of which have elements of great interest.

For many people the BBC radio 1981 LOTR is their favourite adaptation of all. The "Jackanory" Hobbit reading is wonderful, with four actors reading all the parts wonderfully.

BBC radios "Tales from the Perilous" Realm adapts the parts of the novel in which the hobbits meet Bombadil and Goldberry, because it has the same adapter as the 91 LOTR and he really regretted cutting the Bombadil scenes first time around.

The Rankin Bass and Bakshi animated Tolkien films have lots of flaws, but should be seen and have some great performances.


Jan 23 2018, 3:19pm

Post #5 of 6 (1788 views)
I have seen the Rankin Bass and Bakshi films - when they came out. [In reply to] Can't Post

There were positive elements in both attempts - some areas not so great - Rankin Bass frog men elves etc.

The Bakshi film was revolutionary filmed in rotoscope. I kept thinking, I would like to have seen the actual live action film they shot that was the basis for the animation and colorization. I did not bother to learn the various role voices though...other than John Huston who stood out.

(This post was edited by Eruonen on Jan 23 2018, 3:20pm)

Registered User

Jan 23 2018, 4:21pm

Post #6 of 6 (1781 views)
Agreed - both companies' versions had some positives, as well as negatives [In reply to] Can't Post

I've always been a scanner of voice credits if I liked (or even really disliked) a voice. I actually recognised John Hurt as Aragorn as soon as he spoke the first time I saw the 1978 Bakshi version, and the same happened with John Huston as Gandalf.


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