Hard News by Russell Brown

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Hard News: Yet More Hobbit

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  • Simon Bennett,

    There are many examples on Shortland Street. I believe that Van/Jethro were written with Antony Starr in mind, and I'm fairly certain that Diplomatic Immunity was conceived as a Dave Fane vehicle. Sione's Wedding was always intended to be inhabited by the Naked Samoans troupe.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 166 posts Report Reply

  • Kyle Matthews,

    I can only presume it was Parker's very elven looks, and ability to deliver even awful lines with conviction, that sold it.

    I would never have imagined that it was done for Parker.

    Given that it was originally filmed with Arwen at Helm's Deep, I was imagine if it was done for an actor (and I'm dubious about that) it was done for Liv Tyler to try and overcome the small female roles that Tolkein created.

    She was then cut out of the scenes entirely, there's been comments that she asked to be taken out, I've heard that she was just awful at it so they had to cut her out.

    Since Nov 2006 • 6243 posts Report Reply

  • BenWilson,

    She was then cut out of the scenes entirely, there's been comments that she asked to be taken out, I've heard that she was just awful at it so they had to cut her out.

    I bow low to your knowledge! If it were me I'd have cut the lot out. So Parker was a last-minute retrofit? It makes sense if they had already gone to great expense during extended battle sequences involving the Elves.

    I'm not surprised she would not have worked too well as an action figure.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 10560 posts Report Reply

  • nzlemming,

    Actually, Ben, Gothmog was the lieutenant of Minas Morgul but, as Wikipedia notes "he appears in precisely one sentence", to wit:

    "Gothmog the lieutenant of Morgul had flung them into the fray; Easterlings with axes, and Variags of Khand. Southrons in scarlet, and out of Far Harad black men like half-trolls with white eyes and red tongues. Some now hastened up behind the Rohirrim, others held westward to hold off the forces of Gondor and prevent their joining with Rohan."

    So, yeah, much enlarged in the film, but still more or less within canon.

    Waikanae • Since Nov 2006 • 2909 posts Report Reply

  • SteveH,

    So Parker was a last-minute retrofit? It makes sense if they had already gone to great expense during extended battle sequences involving the Elves.

    I don't think Parker was a retrofit. The elves were from Lothlórien so it wouldn't have made sense to have Arwen leading them. I believe the elves were added to Helm's Deep because Jackson wasn't happy with having them sitting in their forests effectively saying "we know this is the great threat of the age, but we'd rather stay here while you deal with it, thanks". In books the elves were fighting their own battles so it's not such a problem.

    Arwen at Helm's Deep was a different thing - I think the idea was to have a more major female character. IIRC, it dates back to the 2-film concept where there wouldn't have been time to deal with Éowyn as much as they did. I think it's mentioned in one of the DVD extras.

    Since Sep 2009 • 444 posts Report Reply

  • Kyle Matthews,

    So Parker was a last-minute retrofit?

    I'm not sure if the Elves of Lothlorien were at Helm's Deep all along. It would have seemed to be difficult to add them in after they finished the hellish night shoots that comprised that part of the movie. I think they just removed Arwen dominated scenes and photoshopped her out of scenes that they kept.

    For true geeks.

    Since Nov 2006 • 6243 posts Report Reply

  • Peter Cox,

    Wasn't it Aragorn's Rangers who turned up originally? My guess is they just replaced him with the Elves because those are characters we'd already met before rather than a whole new group.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 312 posts Report Reply

  • SteveH,

    Wasn't it Aragorn's Rangers who turned up originally?

    That was Pelennor Fields, at least in the books.

    Since Sep 2009 • 444 posts Report Reply

  • Ian Dalziel,

    My guess is they just replaced him with
    the Elves because...

    The Elves have left the building...

    Christchurch • Since Dec 2006 • 7743 posts Report Reply

  • David Hood,

    Wasn't it Aragorn's Rangers who turned up originally?

    That was Pelennor Fields, at least in the books.

    Well, they (Northern Rangers aka the Grey Company) did turn up in Rohan, but after the battle for Helm's Deep. The 30 or so of them then hung round in Aragorn's background for the rest of the book, so didn't even rate being in this 2MB XKCD infographic.
    big link

    Dunedin • Since May 2007 • 1443 posts Report Reply

  • Nick Shand,

    All Incorporated Societies have a rule book in the form of a constitution, and I can confidently speculate that JWL will be getting roasted by due paying members of AE unhappy with how this action has played out.

    I for one would like to sight the formal agreement between MEAA & NZ EA in hopes that some kinds peeps will uncover a fresh way forward out of this farce.

    Alas it is late and I have tricky costume repairs to do combat with tomorrow before my performance group flies like fools .... Venezuela this time ;)

    auck • Since Aug 2008 • 79 posts Report Reply

  • Sofie Bribiesca,

    Alas it is late and I have tricky costume repairs to do combat with tomorrow before my performance group flies like fools .... Venezuela this time ;)

    Best of luck Nick Shand. Fly your pretties. ;)

    here and there. • Since Nov 2007 • 6796 posts Report Reply

  • BenWilson,

    So, yeah, much enlarged in the film, but still more or less within canon.

    Yup, there's no indication that Gothmog is an orc, other than the name is a little bit orc sounding. Most of Sauron's inner flunkies were human.

    I don't think Parker was a retrofit. The elves were from Lothlórien so it wouldn't have made sense to have Arwen leading them.

    Nothing about it made sense. Considering that they met Haldir in Lothlorien, why the hell didn't the Company travel with them, considering they were an entire army, and must have left Lorien about the same time? How and why they happened to be crossing the middle of Rohan on foot, just in time to turn up without any heralding, fully armed, without any train of supplies, at a remote valley, rather than going to, say, Edoras, or Fangorn, was beyond me. Arwen being with them would just cap off the silliness, she'd have had to have ridden solo through the gap of Rohan to catch up, riding blind without any means of knowing where anyone was. Also, from their armor, it's not clear they were wood elves - it seemed to be the very same that was worn by Elrond in the opening sequence of FOTR. I guess Jackson kept his options open, and made the best of it.

    Quite frankly, good on him. Fanboys be damned, he wanted the fight to be a lot more meaningful, considering it was the grand finale of the film, whereas the book ends with Frodo being captured in Shelob's Lair. But that was never going to happen, no way was Return of the King going to have the ring destroyed halfway through the film, and then 2 hours of wrap up, that would never fly in a movie. Kids around me were yawning and fidgeting all the way through Grey Havens scene, there would have been a riot if 20 minutes were spent just getting back from Minas Tirith to the Shire.

    And anyway, what was wrong with Tolkien's choice of strong female character? Eowyn was his answer to the boy's own story criticism, she falls for Aragorn, is politely rejected on account of his having been betrothed to Arwen for decades, bitterly rails against sexism, and says fuck it and goes anyway, and together with the little hobbit earns everlasting renown on the battlefield by slaying the leader of the Nazgul. Then she scores a prince.

    But yes, I can see that the very nature of the elves was very hard to convey in film, because they are so alien, more alien really than the dwarves and hobbits, on account of their immortality. So Arwen was not a strong character in the book and that needed some amends in the movies, and why waste an actress like Tyler on sitting around looking pretty? The book had the leisure of a huge appendix just about Aragorn and Arwen.

    Well, they (Northern Rangers aka the Grey Company) did turn up in Rohan, but after the battle for Helm's Deep. The 30 or so of them then hung round in Aragorn's background for the rest of the book

    Yes, and two half-elves, the sons of Elrond. I think this is homaged by Elrond himself turning up with Anduril (which in the book Aragorn actually carries at all times, first broken, then reforged after the council of Elrond, and it figures very highly in the Helm's Deep battle).

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 10560 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Ranapia,

    Eowyn was his answer to the boy's own story criticism, she falls for Aragorn, is politely rejected on account of his having been betrothed to Arwen for decades, bitterly rails against sexism, and says fuck it and goes anyway, and together with the little hobbit earns everlasting renown on the battlefield by slaying the leader of the Nazgul.

    Meh... "I bet you're going to regret flicking me off when I get myself killed! Huh? Where are you going..."

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 12370 posts Report Reply

  • Ian Dalziel,

    Non-menclature...

    Yup, there's no indication that Gothmog
    is an orc,

    sounds like a black cat to me...

    ...and two half-elves, the sons of Elrond

    ...so Elrond would be an early founder
    of Scion-tology then?

    Christchurch • Since Dec 2006 • 7743 posts Report Reply

  • giovanni tiso,

    The Elves have left the building...

    You I've missed most of all, scarecrow.

    Wellington • Since Jun 2007 • 7473 posts Report Reply

  • Ian Dalziel,

    Dot Dash and the Last Straw...

    You I've missed most of all, scarecrow.

    ...more Goldbricking?
    How was Kansas via Oz?
    ;- )

    PS Looking forward to William Gibson on
    Nine to Noon today after 10am

    Christchurch • Since Dec 2006 • 7743 posts Report Reply

  • Peter Cox,

    http://www.irishcentral.com/ent/Peter-Jacksons-The-Hobbit-will-film-in-Ireland-104481474.html

    Well, that's the first official confirmation they're seriously looking. How seriously, is anyone's guess of course. But still...

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 312 posts Report Reply

  • nzlemming,

    FYI

    Yvette Reid has called another meeting on Monday night in Wellington
    http://www.theatreview.org.nz/news/news.php?id=674

    MEETING OF WELLINGTON ACTORS 11/10

    Whether you're Pro-Union, Anti-Boycott, on-the-fence or just confused...

    I urge you to join me for a meeting of Wellington Actors.

    Monday 11th October, ...6.30pm
    at Tararua Tramping Club
    4 Moncrieff Street, Mt Victoria

    On the 28th September 400 Auckland actors met to discuss how NZ performers would like to proceed regarding Equity's recent actions in regards to the Hobbit. A verbal vote was taken and a statement given to the media regarding their decision on how NZ performers should proceed.

    As an after thought, Equity then organised a Wellington meeting. Only Equity members were sent an email invitation. Wellington Agents were not informed about the meeting. As a result Wellington was represented by approximately only 40 actors, the majority being Equity members.

    The following statement was then issued by Equity to the media: "...the majority (70%) of the performers at the (Wellington) meeting voted in favour of NZ Actor’s Equity meeting face-to-face with Sir Peter and/or the production company to resolve the issues as soon as possible."

    I have counted Wellington based actors on the books of just four Agents and there was 595.

    The aim of the evening - To provide solid information and discussion regarding the stance of Peter Jackson, NZ Equity and the wider Film & TV industry so Wellington actors can hear all the facts and make up their own minds. Speak on their own behalf.

    Also to provide information and a forum regarding how we as a community would like such matters handled in future, how actors wish to be represented. How we can mend damaged relationships and work together.

    I hope to secure a panel of individuals supporting various views to help us all be as informed as possible. We can then all discuss the information as a wider group.

    If you would like to speak as part of the panel, please email me with your name, email address and the content of your speech (to avoid too many double ups) and I will be in touch asap.

    If you have questions that you would like to have answered at this meeting please email them to me and I will endeavour to find someone suitable who can provide those answers for you.

    Questions that I will already endeavour to have covered by the panel include:

    *What is the Pink Book and what does it say? How is it currently used or not used?

    *What are residuals? How do they work?

    *All NZ Equity want is a meeting, so why wont PJ meet with them?

    All actors are welcome!!

    We may have speakers on the panel who are non-actors, but would like to keep the general attendance to actors only. Crew members and agents who also work as actors (have an agent) are of course welcome.

    Please distribute this letter to as many fellow actors as possible. If we only have 40 again... it will be shaming.

    Show you care and that your opinion matters. If the Hobbit moves, it is Wellington that will be most affected. There is a lot at stake here so please get involved.

    Kind Regards,

    Yvette Reid
    Yvettereid@gmail.com

    P.S Should any decisions be made (regarding Equity/Hobbit situation) between now and Monday affecting the content of our meeting I will keep this page updated –

    I'll try to make it and report back, but I am working the election all weekend so I may be tied up.

    Waikanae • Since Nov 2006 • 2909 posts Report Reply

  • Simon Bennett,

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 166 posts Report Reply

  • Peter Cox,

    Equity still not talking to SPADA, apparently.

    Doesn't surprise me even slightly. It's pretty clear that this is going to be them holding out to get a deal with the studios to me. Spada was never on the cards. To be honest I doubt that the 'just a cup of tea' meeting with Peter Jackson was ever on the cards either, excepting to push for full SAG residual rates, and PJ knows it. They have the studios over a barrell, and would never accept anything less and the boycott would continue on. Everything else is just posturing. Whether the studio will ultimately choose to take the hobbit to another country and pay those full SAG rates is anyone's guess though. I would imagine it just purely comes down to whatever's cheapest. I'm by no means certain it'll be NZ, and I suspect PJ is no longer quite so keen to fight for it to stay here.

    I hope it does stay here obviously, but I guess we shall see...

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 312 posts Report Reply

  • Peter Cox,

    PS dang, I see looking back Michael clearly called the SAG vs Studios cause for all this a full three hours before I mentioned it. Good work Mike. That's exactly what it is. Both PJ and Actor's Equity are really just entangled in that game.

    Best guess I have for the outcome is that the SAG will negotiate with the studios for SAG deal for the local actors, maybe letting MEAA pretend they did it as a face saving exercise. Whether the hobbit winds up in NZ is another story altogether.

    All that Actor's Equity/MEAA have ever been expected to do is come in and stall for time, which is exactly what's been happening. Just a pity they haven't been more straight forward with the fact that this was, quite literally, a boycott, and their actual demands in their media appearances, or let out accidental slips that they wanted to bring the hobbit contract into domestic production - which clearly couldn't afford it, and this probably would have wound up a lot less divisive than it has been.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 312 posts Report Reply

  • Peter Cox,

    Okay, so I know it's kind of sad of me to turn this into a forum of one, but just wanted to say Rod Oram is my new personal hero.

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/business/4215769/NZ-film-stuck-in-muddle-earth

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 312 posts Report Reply

  • Islander,

    That's an interesting article you linked to, Peter Cox - the only thing I'd disagree with is "given the high value placed on creativity in the arts-"

    It very much depends on which art: literary fiction? Not true. Poetry? Not true. Short stories? Not true.

    Big O, Mahitahi, Te Wahi … • Since Feb 2007 • 5643 posts Report Reply

  • Michael Duignan,

    Yup, I'd have to say he's hit this one fair on the head....

    Since Oct 2010 • 18 posts Report Reply

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