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The One Ring Forums: Tolkien Topics: Movie Discussion: The Hobbit:
Wondering about the writing

kathyrote
The Shire

May 19 2008, 3:52am

Post #1 of 23 (492 views)
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Wondering about the writing Can't Post

I have no doubt that visually we're all in for the motherload on Hobbit & the film to follow. But is there any info. yet on who will be writing on these films? If Peter Jackson is elsewhere working on Lovely Bones, etc. does that mean Fran Walsh and Phillipa Bowen won't be as available either? Lord I hope not. Their grasp of vernacular in LOTR scripts was so important. The LOTR writing elevated it from a great fantasy and visual to a movie worthy of all kinds of dramatic respect (and nominations). It brought those characters to life for us and kept them from being cute or purely fictional characters. Wow, think of the task of doing that for not one, but 13 dwarves !


N.E. Brigand
Half-elven


May 19 2008, 3:58am

Post #2 of 23 (267 views)
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Motherlode of what? [In reply to] Can't Post

Also, a question about this comment:

Quote
The LOTR [film's] writing elevated it from a great fantasy and visual to a movie worthy of all kinds of dramatic respect (and nominations).


Is drama inherently superior to fantasy?

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

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squire
Valinor


May 19 2008, 4:06am

Post #3 of 23 (254 views)
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drama boondoggle -- fersher! [In reply to] Can't Post

Drama is a form, Fantasy is a genre.

Thus:
Fantasy drama
Comic drama
Tragic drama
Socialist realist drama

Or:
Fantasy drama
Fantasy book
Fantasy film
Fantasy painting



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


kathyrote
The Shire

May 19 2008, 4:16am

Post #4 of 23 (243 views)
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Fantasy and Drama [In reply to] Can't Post

I didn't say it very well. Sorry. I wanted to say that the combination of great fantasy and great drama was one of the many outstanding achievements of the LOTR team. Not that one form of story telling is superior to the other.


N.E. Brigand
Half-elven


May 19 2008, 4:59am

Post #5 of 23 (269 views)
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Ah, right. Sorry. [In reply to] Can't Post

I was carelessly misremembering Tolkien's comparison of fairy-story and tragedy, which I agree is not at all the inapt comparison I stated.

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

Join us May 12-18 for "The King of the Golden Hall".


grammaboodawg
Immortal


May 19 2008, 9:13am

Post #6 of 23 (256 views)
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The original screenwriters [In reply to] Can't Post

of Walsh/Boyens and additional work by Jackson/del Toro will be working on this 2-film project :D We really lucked out there!!



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kathyrote
The Shire

May 19 2008, 1:34pm

Post #7 of 23 (219 views)
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Thank you [In reply to] Can't Post

Thanks for that good news. You're right - we lucked out for sure.


Changeitminimally
Registered User

May 21 2008, 1:52pm

Post #8 of 23 (188 views)
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Will the original writing team return? [In reply to] Can't Post

To be honest, I was hoping that del Toro would have more of a hand with the script writing with less input from the original team. Now, I am in awe of the visual accomplishment that the filmmakers achieved with these three films. But with each installment of the LotR films, I felt they unnecessarily deviated from the story more and more in an effort to make the story mass marketable. I think it cost the films integrity and eliminated some of the major themes of Tolkien's work. The dialogue for Gimli, Merry, and Pippin was entirely 'cutsie" and written in a failed attempt to be comical. The death of Saruman in the extended version, and the entire ending of the book being eliminated from the film is a major flaw that is attributed to the script writers (unless the Producers made them do it, in which case I apologize).


merklynn
Lorien


May 21 2008, 6:44pm

Post #9 of 23 (170 views)
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I'd rather an experienced hand wrote the script than an inexperienced one [In reply to] Can't Post

By the same token, the experience that Fran, Phillipa and Peter had in making the LOTR, working on the scripts and subsequently revising, and cutting out scenes that they later found would be inappropriate make them for me better choices than anyone else. They had the first hand experience with the fan reactions to scenes like Arwen at Helm's Deep etc, and they made the adjustments. This time around, they go into scripting the Hobbit knowing what fans are demanding of them and knowing to treat the subject with great care. Trusting some new team that GDT might assemble might be a little harder, given that we at least know that this is the Walsh/Boyens second shot at this and they are vets in the LOTR universe now.

Also, as a fan of both the books and the films, I actually enjoyed the characterizations of Merry, Pippin, and Gimli in the films, and I think it was funny and enjoyable because of the quality and charms of the actors. Often I hear it stated here as if it is fact that these characters were a let down to all, but all I heard in the audience when watching these films at the theatre was laughter and applause in all the right places. I think they worked, even if they were portrayed a little dfifferently, they were still (for me) great characters.


grammaboodawg
Immortal


May 21 2008, 7:23pm

Post #10 of 23 (173 views)
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I think they did a good job [In reply to] Can't Post

explaining their reasoning behind the changes, and admit they would do some of their adaptations differently if they could... like the changes in Faramir's characters. Fran Walsh says they'd have done it differently given what they know now, but so much had already been filmed that couldn't be changed. So I believe you're right in the fact that their experience in writing and in fan expectations will have them being as careful and worthy of the task as they possibly can. There's no doubt in my mind they honour Tolkien's works and strive to treat their adaptations with respect.



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Trust him... The Hobbit is coming!

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


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Zmulady
Rohan

May 21 2008, 7:39pm

Post #11 of 23 (159 views)
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yes what gramma said [In reply to] Can't Post

I think they could only get better at it. Just think of what they learned from writing LOTR. And with Phillipa on board I have no doubts it will be great and as true to the book as possible.


Changeitminimally
Registered User

May 21 2008, 9:58pm

Post #12 of 23 (166 views)
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The audience [In reply to] Can't Post

I'm glad you enjoyed the characterizations made by the script writers... I just prefer Tolkien's characterizations better. The strongest characters in the film are the one's that stay truest to the book. I agree having an accomplished team of writers is important, but for me the original team succumbed to dumbing down certain aspects of the book in an unnecessary attempt to make one of the most popular books of all time, more marketable.

The notion that we need to stick with these writers doesn't quite gel with me. del Toro was not a part of the last three films yet having seen his other work and the integrity and attention to detail he brings with him, I'm thrilled having him direct. Point being, I'm sure there are scores of writers with as much skill or more who could handle this task without uselessly switching plot details around, eliminating the end of the novel, or cheapen the characters as a whole.

As someone else on the thread did, I can just as easily cite personal experience with the audience having seen each film several times in the theater (sad, I know) and describing how any laughter present when Gimli says "Not the beard" or when Merry and Pippen prattle on was negligible or forced. Comedy is not the current script writers' strong suit, nor does it need to be. The material does not lend itself to prat falls and Abbot and Costello routines. Regardless, such an argument is flawed... unless we were in the same theater, I have no idea what your audience was like nor do you know mine (where the laughter was indeed minimal).

Look, the films were an artistic expression beyond anything I'm capable of and I loved them. I'm fine with the current writers... I just wish they would give their audience a little more respect and not make unnecessary changes.


N.E. Brigand
Half-elven


May 21 2008, 10:10pm

Post #13 of 23 (168 views)
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No prat falls? [In reply to] Can't Post

What about Bombur falling on Thorin at Bilbo's door?

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Changeitminimally
Registered User

May 21 2008, 11:22pm

Post #14 of 23 (188 views)
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A detail, not the underlying argument. [In reply to] Can't Post

Great! Put it in. But don't make it the character's reason for existing and especially don't add if it never happened.

By the way, did you recall that off the top of your head or are you busily scanning the first couple chapters of the novel?


merklynn
Lorien


May 21 2008, 11:57pm

Post #15 of 23 (165 views)
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N.E. Brigand is our resident expert... [In reply to] Can't Post

One of several. Just relax a little. Everyone is entitled to their opinion. There is no right or wrong on how we view the movie adaptations.


Changeitminimally
Registered User

May 22 2008, 12:01am

Post #16 of 23 (166 views)
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Of course [In reply to] Can't Post

I'm sorry if I came across harshly. I was simply responding in kind.


Peredhil lover
Valinor

May 22 2008, 4:57am

Post #17 of 23 (152 views)
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IIRC [In reply to] Can't Post

they mentioned somewhere that part of the problem was that the script originally was meant for two movies and they had to rewrite it completely. And they changed the script during filming permanently and mainly back nearer to the book. I think now that they don't have to rewrite it so massive at the last moment and know better what works with the fans, there's not much need for worry.

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


grammaboodawg
Immortal


May 22 2008, 9:31am

Post #18 of 23 (137 views)
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You're absolutely right! [In reply to] Can't Post

I'd forgotten about that! Can you imagine the frantic work they went through to get things ready? That's a very good point, Peredhil lover :)



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Trust him... The Hobbit is coming!

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


TORn's Observations Lists


ROD BAGGINS
Registered User

May 23 2008, 1:18pm

Post #19 of 23 (125 views)
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Hindsight can be a wonderful thing [In reply to] Can't Post

Because it allows the studios to have much more faith in and willingness to finance The Hobbit, to trust the filmmakers involved because it has been proven by Peter Jackson, Fran Walsh, Phillipa Boyens and the rest of the team that Tolkien's work can be adapted to film successfully.

The writers have learnt from their mistakes and their successes which will give them much more confidence in their ability to adapt The Hobbit. The companion film is where they will probably encounter a harder test. But I have confidence in their abilities.


grammaboodawg
Immortal


May 23 2008, 2:31pm

Post #20 of 23 (118 views)
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*high five* :D // [In reply to] Can't Post

 



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

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


TORn's Observations Lists


Earl
Forum Admin / Moderator


May 23 2008, 5:41pm

Post #21 of 23 (138 views)
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Well said [In reply to] Can't Post

Hindsight also teaches the filmmakers to have more faith in the source material and more trust in us fans to accept Tolkien's works for all its childish humour and its gritty realities.

It will serve them very well I think, not just for The Hobbit, but for the companion film as well, which is the place they need this assurance from our side.

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.


mae govannen
Tol Eressea

May 24 2008, 4:42pm

Post #22 of 23 (112 views)
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'There won't be a Shire, Pippin.' How "cutsie"!... // [In reply to] Can't Post

 

'Is everything sad going to come untrue?'
(Sam, 'The Field of Cormallen', in 'The Return of the King'.)


mae govannen
Tol Eressea

May 24 2008, 5:02pm

Post #23 of 23 (144 views)
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The above line from me was in reply to Changeitminimally [In reply to] Can't Post

who said all the dialogue given to some of the characters (that he named, and Merry was one of them) was absolutely "cutsie".
My few words quoted in answer come up so far from that post from Changeitminimally that, now out of context, they might look strange and mysterious, sorry for that!...

'Is everything sad going to come untrue?'
(Sam, 'The Field of Cormallen', in 'The Return of the King'.)

 
 

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