Adapting The Hobbit

What do you think of Tolkien on the silver screen...? Whether Bakshi, Jackson, Amazon, BBC radio play, or whoever else, come on in and discuss your reflections, opinions, and memories...

Postby Ysbryd-lochrann » Sat Jan 03, 2004 6:18 pm

I'm aware that this has already been done (and wonderfully, I should add) by FrodotheWise. However, having now seen Jackson's three movies, and as a writer, I have decided to give it a go myself.<BR><BR>I've never written a screenplay before, so this is something new for me. What I want to capture is the more folkloric feel of The Hobbit, the deep mist, the wide fields, the plunging slopes and darkness -- and the magic, so much more present than in LotR. Anyone who feels like commenting or critiquing is very welcome to do so; I'd love to hear what others have to say.<BR><BR>EDIT: Script removed for moment.
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Postby bird » Sat Jan 03, 2004 6:43 pm

Heres a scene I wrote a while back (also inspired by FTW!) <img src="http://www.tolkienonline.com/mb/i/expressions/face-icon-small-happy.gif"border=0><BR><BR>INT.CAVE – EVENING<BR><BR>The Dwarves sit around in a circle discussing what their going to do with their shares of the treasure. Bombur is asleep and snoring loudly. Gandalf sitting cross-legged between them and the cave entrance, smoking his pipe. Bilbo is lying down near the back of the cave, trying to get comfortable.<BR><BR> BILBO<BR> Oh drat these rags! I wish I<BR> could have brought some of my<BR> lesser feather pillows from<BR> back home. Those would have<BR> done at least!<BR><BR>Bilbo half expects a response, or even a comfy pillow to be thrown his way at least. But no one responds. The Dwarves are still deep in discussion about treasure, and Gandalf still sits cross-legged, watching and caves entrance and thinking.<BR><BR> BILBO<BR> Oh! Confound it!<BR><BR>With that, Bilbo jumps up and hurriedly walks past The Dwarves (who don’t even notice him go) then Gandalf and almost out of the cave.<BR><BR> GANDALF<BR> Where are you going Bilbo?<BR><BR>Bilbo suddenly stops and smiles innocently at Gandalf.<BR><BR> BILBO<BR>Oh, no where. Just for a walk.<BR> (looking out)<BR>Um, there’s still some light left<BR>I think. And the storm seems to<BR>have given up for a bit.<BR><BR> GANDALF<BR>The caves and high passes of The<BR>Misty Mountains can be dangerous<BR>places Bilbo, and especially for<BR>a young Hobbit not accustomed to<BR>them.<BR><BR> BILBO<BR>Well I shall be extra careful then.<BR> (he places his hand<BR> on his swords hilt)<BR>I doubt if Wolf’s or Goblin’s or<BR>anything else that lives up here<BR>should bother much with me.<BR><BR>GANDALF<BR>Nether the less Bilbo, I at least shall<BR>Come with you. For I also wish to see the<BR>Sun setting over the western lands. It<BR>may be a while before we see it again,<BR>and it shall be a comforting thought<BR>over the dark days to come.<BR><BR>Bilbo smiles acceptingly. Yet Gandalf has caught him. He knows why Bilbo wanted to go for a walk. To see the sun setting over his homeland. Over The Shire. And Bilbo knows he knows.<BR><BR><BR>EXT.MISTY MOUNTAINS – EVENING<BR><BR>Bilbo and Gandalf walk together up a steep rocky hill, capped with snow. They reach the summit, but we don’t see what they see. They halt and stand close together on hill, higher up than most of the land around them.<BR><BR>There is an orangey-red glow on their faces, and it warms their hearts and souls. They gaze together at the sun setting over the western lands. Bilbo’s mouth opens wide in awe. A slight smile cracks on his lips. Gandalf has seen the sight before, and looks upon it with reverence.<BR><BR> BILBO<BR> I never hoped that I should once<BR> see anything so magnificent...<BR> (solemly)<BR>yet so sad...<BR><BR> GANDALF<BR>The Shire is a wonderful place Bilbo, and filled with wonderful people. Surely they can<BR>cope without you for a few months?<BR><BR>Gandalf chuckles to himself.<BR><BR> BILBO<BR>Yes. But it is not them I am worried about. I myself am homesick to high degree. I miss my homeland, Gandalf. Bag-End. The fields and little rivers. And I don’t suppose there shall be many of those where we’re going?<BR><BR>Gandalf smiles understandingly and looks down at Bilbo.<BR> GANDALF<BR>Take heart, my dear Hobbit. You shall indeed<BR>see your homeland again one day. And I shall see it with you.<BR><BR>Bilbo looks up at Gandalf and smiles, he smiles back. HIGH ANGLE as Gandalf places his arms on Bilbo’s shoulder and THE VIEW begins to loosen and we see the golden lowlands spread before them and the red setting of the sun over western lands, far far away, dissolving into a mist of time and memory...<BR><BR> DISSOLVE TO:<BR><BR><BR>EXT.MISTY MOUNTAINS – NIGHT<BR><BR>It is late night now. Thin wisps of cloud glide past a full moon of pure white, set against a pitch black sky. The storm has started up again.<BR><BR><BR>INT.CAVE – NIGHT<BR><BR>It is very dark in the cave now. And silent. Everyone is asleep. There is some light from the moon in the sky, but not much. Even Gandalf lies down asleep. The Ponies stand huddled together near the side and back of the cave. <BR><BR>CLOSE ON Bilbo. He’s asleep also. But troubled it seems. He turns over so that he’s facing the back of the cave. He opens his eyes slightly and sees something that half puzzles and half scares him. It freezes him to the spot.<BR><BR>Bilbo’s POV: A small ray of dim orange light, piercing its way through a small crack at the very back of the cave. It slowly grows bigger. Suddenly, a FAINT TAPPING noise is heard from behind the crack and a menacing pair of slanted red eyes appear and stare right back at him.<BR><BR>Bilbo jolts up with a start. He is breathing heavily. It was only a nightmare. He looks around the cave to check if everything’s alright. It is. Everyone is safe and still sleeping soundly. Except no ponies. But Bilbo doesn’t notice. Bilbo smiles slightly to himself. But suddenly the TAPPING noise is heard once again towards the back of the care. Bilbo freezes and his smile quickly fades. A dim orange glow appears on the side of his face. He slowly turns his head to meet the sound.<BR><BR>What he sees: The crack he dreamt of is real, and now quite large. A dim orange glow comes forth from it, much like torch light. He just catches a quick glimpse of the last of the ponies being huddled through and into the darkness and there, as before, a slanted pair of red eyes stare right back at him.<BR><BR>He quickly grabs his sheathed sword and pulls it out. It is shining a bright blue.<BR><BR> BILBO<BR> GOBLIN’S! GANDALF! THORIN!<BR> DWARVES!<BR><BR>Gandalf arises with a jolt and is quickly on his feet with Glamdring at the ready. The Dwarfs awake more slowly and regretfully. But Thorin awakes to with a jolt as his eyes dart open.<BR><BR>And with this, as soon as Bilbo shouts, a large host of GOBLIN’S dive into the cave, snarling and cursing. There are many of them. At least six for every Dwarf and two for Bilbo. They quickly overwhelm them, grab Bilbo and The Dwarfs before any of them can resist and hurry them away back into the darkness and torch flicker.<BR><BR>Gandalf fires out from his staff amazing showers of fire and lighting, killing many of the closer Goblins dead, but it’s too late. Bilbo, the ponies and all The Dwarfs are gone into the blackness and the crack is sealed back up again with a SNAP.<BR>
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Postby GimliBrokeMyNeck » Sun Jan 04, 2004 7:43 pm

I always thought a dwarf prologe would help the hobbit.<BR><BR>LOTR was so focused on Elf and Men history<BR><BR>It would talk about the dwarf strongholds, Moria and Erebor<BR><BR>then it would talk about each places downfall and would include a huge battle like the FOTR prologe involving Dain and Thrain going up against Azog.<BR><BR>of course they could do an EE and maybe relaese it in in two parts so that they can put everything in.
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Postby MinasMorgul11 » Sun Jan 04, 2004 11:19 pm

Do you think if they make the Hobbit they will cut of Beorn ? Beorn is one of my favorites so I hope not. But knowing how movie can only include so much from the book and that the cartoon hobbit cut out Beorn ?! any thought anyone ? <img src="http://www.tolkienonline.com/mb/i/expressions/face-icon-small-smile.gif"border=0>
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Postby FrodotheWise » Mon Jan 05, 2004 4:30 am

Nice work everyone. <BR><BR>MinasMorgul11, I think one can certainly include Beorn, especially if the new film is 175-180 minutes long like FOTR and TTT, and he'd be more relevant to the plot than, say, Tom Bombadil was for Rings, as Beorn more or less comes to the rescue in the Battle of the Five Armies. Of course the writers could decide to drop him altogether and change the outcome of the Battle of the Five Armies in that respect. Another possibility is that they'll write two versions of all scenes and chapters that feature or relate to Beorn, and omit him for the theatrical version but include him in the SE. I do think, however, that you can write a 170-180 page script for the theatrical cut including Beorn (my own script includes him and currently stands at about 110 pages, up to the book's chapter where Roac tells Bilbo and the dwarves of the imminent arrival of Bard and the Elvenking). Done properly, you could have a pretty much perfect theatrical version of The Hobbit and rendering a SE unnecessary.
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Postby LothLegoidian » Mon Jan 05, 2004 6:27 am

Great scripts guys! Ysbryd-lochrann, that really set the atmosphere of the Hobbit rather nicely. I enjoyed reading your script very much. <img src="http://www.tolkienonline.com/mb/i/expressions/face-icon-small-smile.gif"border=0><BR><BR>I can imagine Ian Holm and Ian Mckellen playing those parts. I wonder if there would be any problems getting the LOTR cast back for the Hobbit? Especially for smaller roles, like Viggo coming back to play Aragorn for a scene or two. It would be a shame to recast when such great actors could replay their roles as brilliantly as in LOTR. <BR>
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Postby MinasMorgul11 » Tue Jan 06, 2004 9:08 pm

Well the problem with having Viggo come back as Aragorn is that when the Hobbits takes place Aragorn is like 10 years old <img src="http://www.tolkienonline.com/mb/i/expressions/face-icon-small-smile.gif"border=0> . You have a good idea about using the same actors. Really thought the only same ones would be Gandal, Elrond , Bilbo and Gloin. I Believe that in Fellowship that Dwarf walking with Gimli with the white Beard was Gloin.<BR><BR> Legolas it would not hurt for him to have a minor part in it though since he is the Son of the Elf King. His name is not mentioned in the Hobbit but I believe he was there. What do you think about all this Frodo the Wise ? My Cat Olive will be happy because she think the Hobbit is better then the Lord of the Rings <img src="http://www.tolkienonline.com/mb/i/expressions/face-icon-small-smile.gif"border=0>. She like Lord of the Ring's but she likes more simple stuff better <img src="http://www.tolkienonline.com/mb/i/expressions/face-icon-small-smile.gif"border=0>
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Postby northpolarbeorn » Tue Jan 06, 2004 9:45 pm

Why does everybody always think that Beorn would be cut from a movie version of "The Hobbit"? Sure, he wasn't in the cartoon, but that was only 90m long. <BR>He's a guy who can transform into a bear. A were-bear! Has that ever been done in motion picture history? Jackson (or whoever the director might be) won't be able to resist including a big metamorphosis scene, even if it means expanding Beorn's part. He's a lot more likely to be in the movie than the eagles or the spiders. They're too much 'been there, done that'. They will want to play with new creatures in the new movie.<BR><BR>npb
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Postby chemnik » Tue Jan 06, 2004 9:51 pm

There's no way that PJ will leave Beorn out of the movie.It's just too great an oportunity...
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Postby MinasMorgul11 » Tue Jan 06, 2004 9:54 pm

I never said I thought he would be cut I said I just hope he would be in. Of course he would be awesome but it's up to who adopt's the move. People have different taste and Ideas for what work's for a film. I never expected Glorfindel to be cut but he was.
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Postby Elendil36 » Tue Jan 06, 2004 10:02 pm

Any thoughts on how PJ will deal with the problem HE created regarding wearing the One Ring. I mean, Sauron is very much on the scene at this time, as Gandalf has to leave the company to deal with him at Dol Guldur. So the problem is, since PJ decided to drastically alter the experience of wearing the One Ring and make it so that Sauron can, at all times, see the wearer, there's no way Peej can not have Bilbo use the Ring, and there's no way Peej can't have Sauron see him. Considering how often the Ring effects the outcome of events in the Hobbit, isnt this problematic? Wouldnt Bilbo notice the large flaming, talking Eye everytime he tried to do anything?<BR><BR>Thoughts?
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Postby GimliBrokeMyNeck » Tue Jan 06, 2004 10:15 pm

The dwarves would have to be serious characters, after the dumbing down of Gimli I would be dissapointed if they diminished Thorin and Balin
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Postby LothLegoidian » Tue Jan 06, 2004 10:29 pm

Elendil36, I got the impression in PJ's version of LOTR, that Sauron could only see the ring wearer once Sauron's power was at a certain level - hence why Bilbo has no problem wearing the ring at his party in the very beginning. It was only much later when Sauron was more powerful and was looking for the ring (because he now knew it was found) that wearing the ring became a problem for Frodo. Therefore, back 60 odd years when Sauron was still relatively powerless, Bilbo would not have a problem at all wearing the ring.<BR><BR>And in regards to Aragorn being about 10 in the Hobbit, do you think that would really matter for a cameo appearance in a movie version? I mean most people would realise that he is long lived, and I'm sure such a small deviation from the books would not upset that many people - PJ had certainly made bigger changes then making Aragorn a few years older then the books... <img src="http://www.tolkienonline.com/mb/i/expressions/face-icon-small-smile.gif"border=0><BR>
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Postby Elendil36 » Tue Jan 06, 2004 10:29 pm

Id imagine he'd have to have a range of dwarvish dispositions on display. Thorin is a grim dwarf, no doubt, but Himboffer and Kili and Fili are obviously comic characters. No worries there. Gloin should be played by John Rys-Davis, though. But write him a serious rather than bumbling role.<BR><BR>Loth: I guess thats's true, what you say about Bilbo using the Ring in the beginning of FOTR. Its odd though because considering the time compression, theres almost no elapse between Bilbo's party and Frodo's using the Ring in Bree, and nothing of particular importance occurs (on screen anyway) that would indicate THAT dramatic a rise in Sauron's power. Yet another loose end emerges in the movies.
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Postby Ugluk » Tue Jan 06, 2004 10:38 pm

I really like the script here, I'm writing a script for The Silmarillion myself. Anyway, could someone post the link for FrodoTheWise's Hobbit script? I'd love to read it...<img src="http://www.tolkienonline.com/mb/i/expressions/face-icon-small-happy.gif"border=0> <BR><BR><BR>-Ugluk
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Postby northpolarbeorn » Tue Jan 06, 2004 11:07 pm

Elendil,<BR>We see a couple of significant developments concerning Saurons power and knowledge after Bilbo's party. We see the darkness and flame over Mordor, we see Gollum being tortured and revealing what he knows about the Shire, we see the Nazgul leaving Minas Morgul.<BR><BR>Also, remember that although it isn't the 17 years of the book, it is still at least a couple of months before Gandalf returns to the Shire. (almost a year if the date Frodo wakes up in Rivendell is correct)<BR><BR>npb
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Postby FrodotheWise » Wed Jan 07, 2004 4:42 am

Ugluk, I asked Telemachos last year to remove my thread from the board until I had time again to complete the script. There are also some things that I changed in my draft but haven't fixed yet in the TORC thread so it's not necessarily a true reflection of what I intended. But if there is a big demand for my Hobbit thread (apparently there are more people who want to reread my version), then I might reconsider and ask the mods to bring it back.
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Postby andurilwest » Wed Jan 07, 2004 5:58 am

I quite like the opening sequence, especially Gandalf talking to the bird. But do we really need to see Strider? Wasn't he still a little kid back then? And why do you mention Ben-adar/Bombadil when he's not mentioned at all in FOTR? It might just muddle up the non-readers...<BR><BR>I, for one, would like to read FrodotheWise's script. I haven't read it before...
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Postby MinasMorgul11 » Wed Jan 07, 2004 11:28 pm

As for Peter doing a change and making Aragorn older in the Hobbit well that would not work either <img src="http://www.tolkienonline.com/mb/i/expressions/face-icon-small-smile.gif"border=0> You have a good point about that not being as big of a change as some other things. But in the Special Edition Aragorn told Eowyn he was 87. So Peter allready stayed true to Tolkien very much here so I don't think he can go back and make Aragorn older in the Hobbit film <img src="http://www.tolkienonline.com/mb/i/expressions/face-icon-small-smile.gif"border=0> But I would not be surprised to see another actor playing a small 10 year old Aragorn part in the Hobbit but I don't know <img src="http://www.tolkienonline.com/mb/i/expressions/face-icon-small-smile.gif"border=0><BR><BR> As for the same actor playing Gloin as did Gimli. Well you have a very good point. But as I said I think we allready saw Gloin, there was a Dwarf in the first Lord of the Rings movie with a White Beard walking with Gimli and I think that was supposed to be Gloin so perhaps we will see him do Gloin in the hobbit <img src="http://www.tolkienonline.com/mb/i/expressions/face-icon-small-smile.gif"border=0>
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Postby roaccarcsson » Thu Jan 08, 2004 4:42 pm

We need to make sure that a part gets written into this movie for Fidwis!<BR><BR>Bard needs a love interest, don't you think?
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Postby Kezmoid » Thu Jan 08, 2004 4:50 pm

Who is "Fidwis"? <img src="http://www.tolkienonline.com/mb/i/expressions/face-icon-small-confused.gif"border=0><BR><BR><BR><i>Why does everybody always think that Beorn would be cut from a movie version of "The Hobbit"? Sure, he wasn't in the cartoon, but that was only 90m long.</i><BR><BR>If there's enough time then have Beorn, but he'd be my first choice to cut if there wasn't.<BR><BR><i>He's a guy who can transform into a bear. A were-bear! Has that ever been done in motion picture history? Jackson (or whoever the director might be) won't be able to resist including a big metamorphosis scene, even if it means expanding Beorn's part. He's a lot more likely to be in the movie than the eagles or the spiders. They're too much 'been there, done that'. They will want to play with new creatures in the new movie.</i><BR><BR>I think the eagles and spiders would help the idea of 'The Hobbit' being a prequel to LOTR. It would give the eagles more character than just being deus ex machina and the spiders could be linked by mentioning they are the spawn of Shelob.<BR><BR>Also the view from the eagles eyrie over Mirkwood, Esgaroth, Dale and the Lonely Mountain would look breathtaking and enable Gandalf to provide some exposition on the lay of the land to Bilbo (and therefore to the audience too).
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Postby roaccarcsson » Thu Jan 08, 2004 4:58 pm

Who is <b>Fidwis</b>??? What a question!<BR><BR><a href='http://www.tolkienonline.com/thewhitecouncil/messageview.cfm?catid=13&threadid=75273' target=_blank>http://www.tolkienonline.com/thewhitecouncil/messageview.cfm?catid=13&threadid=75273</a>
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Postby dudalb » Thu Jan 08, 2004 5:44 pm

<BR>I am not sure that you should play up the Sauron angle a lot for the film of the Hobbit; I really think the Hobbit should have a lighter tone then LOTR because the book has a lighter tone. Call me a purist in that regard.And I would keep the cameos to a minimum.<BR>And Aragorn is ten years old at the time of the Hobbit.Check the Chronology in the Appendix.You might show him running around Rivendell as a kid but that is about it.<BR>The problem with the Hobbit is that it seems to me to be a movie and half: just a little too much for a three hour film but to expand it to two films might be spreading it a little thin. A Three and Half Hour film might get the job done.
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Postby SilentWraith » Thu Jan 08, 2004 7:32 pm

MinasMorgul11 wrote:<BR><BR><i>But in the Special Edition Aragorn told Eowyn he was 87. So Peter allready stayed true to Tolkien very much here so I don't think he can go back and make Aragorn older in the Hobbit film</i>.<BR><BR>You're forgetting that the book mathematics is different to the movie mathematics. (Well, PJ's movie mathematics, anyway.) Sixty years separates the events of the Hobbit and Bilbo's birthday party at the beginning of FOTR. Then there's another 17 years until Frodo sets off with the ring. That makes 77 years total, which is why Aragorn would be 10 years old during the events of the Hobbit, according to the book. However, PJ's version of FOTR doesn't have the 17 years between Bilbo's party and Frodo setting off. As northpolarbeorn wrote:<BR><BR><i>it is still at least a couple of months before Gandalf returns to the Shire. (almost a year if the date Frodo wakes up in Rivendell is correct)</i>.<BR><BR>The 60 years between the Hobbit and Bilbo's party, followed by the few months that Gandalf is away, makes a total of 61 years, at most. That means that, according to PJ's version of things, Aragorn would be about 26 years old during the events of the Hobbit. That would make it possible to show an adult Aragorn in an adaptation of the Hobbit without conflicting with what was shown in TTT:EE. Of course, I doubt that Viggo could get away with portraying a 26 year old, so re-casting would still be necessary if a cameo by Aragorn was desired.<BR><BR>As for John Rhys-Davies playing Glóin, I doubt that will happen. John had a very bad reaction to the dwarf make-up and probably wouldn't be too keen to go through all that again for a role in the Hobbit.
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Postby Noahmir » Thu Jan 08, 2004 7:51 pm

How can you guys forget mentioning Gollum as a returning Character? Andy Serkis should definitly be back for that role!<BR><BR>I think their should be no trace of the Smeagol personality in The Hobbit's Gollum because it is Frodo who brings that part back of out of him in LOTR!<BR><BR><BR><BR>
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Postby andurilwest » Thu Jan 08, 2004 11:14 pm

Bilbo putting on the ring at the BOFA must not look like cowardice.
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Postby Ysbryd-lochrann » Mon Feb 02, 2004 4:39 pm

I quite like the opening sequence, especially Gandalf talking to the bird. But do we really need to see Strider? Wasn't he still a little kid back then? And why do you mention Ben-adar/Bombadil when he's not mentioned at all in FOTR? It might just muddle up the non-readers...<BR><BR>The beginning of that scene is meant to simply give a wider sense of person and place. Who is Ben-adar? Where is Fornost? Who knows? These are just names given to impress the idea of other things happening in the world. One need not wonder or connect Ben-adar to anything; presumably, it is like many historical films where names are given that the audience does not know, but accepts as part of the atmosphere of the period. The Hobbit really has few names to be recalled, so one more doesn't hurt.<BR><BR>Ah! Silentwraith said it. <img src="http://www.tolkienonline.com/mb/i/expressions/face-icon-small-smile.gif"border=0> Yes, Strider could be in his late twenties during the Hobbit. My only reason for using him was, simply, that the Hobbit builds upon the concept of the Wild, the unknown things in the hills, etc, and to show an anonymous ranger raises the sense of the things that go on right on the borders of sight, unseen. I would not name Aragorn or call him Strider, nor would his face be seen. Simply, you would see him as a cloaked figure, and hear him. His sole purpose would be to set the atmosphere and lead into later matters. It doesn't have to be Aragorn, but since we never know his history in the films beyond a few details, it could just as well be him. And since Strider features in FotR in very Hobbit-ish parts of the story (pre-Rivendell) is would be properly evocative for a viewer. Still, it need not be him. <BR><BR>Anyway, this script has gotten to Mirkwood now, and the beginning has changed, as has much else. I'll post soon. Thanks for the comments, everybody!
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Postby andurilwest » Mon Feb 02, 2004 11:05 pm

Maybe you've thought of this already, but I think Bard should be introduced early. He should be guarding the gate of Lake-town when the dwarves arrive.<BR><BR>I also think: <BR><BR>Some parts of the dwarves' song could be used as a marching/walking song, which Bilbo hears.<BR><BR>Balin should be wiser than Thorin.<BR><BR>Bombur - comic relief, but turns out to be a great warrior.<BR><BR>Fili and Kili - impetuous/reckless - that leads to their deaths.<BR><BR>Anyway, that's what I think.<BR>
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Postby andurilwest » Mon Feb 02, 2004 11:31 pm

Oh, and Thorin "was a very haughty dwarf, and said nothing about <i>service</i>". He should be visibly arrogant and proud. <BR><BR>Should the dwarves carry some sort of weapons before they meet up with the trolls? Should the others get some swords, axes, daggers, etc. as Gandalf, Thorin and Bilbo get their own weapons?
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Postby Ysbryd-lochrann » Sat Feb 14, 2004 12:18 pm

I've removed the script bits that I posted, as they no longer bear any resemblance to what I have written. If anyone wants to help me out here, I have a few questions:<BR><BR>Firstly, how many dwarves should be included?<BR><BR>No matter their number, the focus will largely be on a choice few, so the question is whether the majority of them are cut or kept in the background. Certainly from a budgetary standpoint, you would want to cut several of them and save the money and time involved in creating the designs for each, not to mention applying makeup to thirteen actors daily. Furthermore, an audience that has not read the book will struggle to keep thirteen dwarves straight, and to visually create thirteen unique appearances will be challenging. What's more, if we cut the number to, say, six, then the focus is tighter and the characters can be better brought into focus. From a wider standpoint, fifteen people traversing the land tends to look like a field trip rather than a secret journey. <BR><BR>Although I was determined to keep all of the dwarves, I am now considering that the above is a better route. The dwarves I would keep are:<BR><BR>Thorin<BR>Balin<BR>Bombur<BR>Fili<BR>Kili<BR>Gloin<BR><BR>Each has something unique to add, or some connection worth making.<BR><BR>Secondly, what of Gandalf?<BR>Twice he disappears, both times without reasons that will be satisfying on screen. His first absence, and following "looking ahead, looking behind," explanation doesn't work in terms of a movie, IMHO. Also, at that point in the story, some form of action in needed at this point. Perhaps the barrow-downs could be lifted from FotR and put here, involving one of the characters being lost and taken by a wight, and Gandalf's endeavor to save him.<BR><BR>As for the second absence, how do you explain that Gandalf went off because of Sauron? You could put in some form of battle here, with the Elves of Lorien storming Dol-Guldur and driving out Sauron, yet this is in itself straying distantly from TABA. The above simply doesn't fit. This whole episode could be off screen, with only a subtle hint later on by Gandalf that the Necromancer has been driven out of Dol-Guldur, and that whether he will return remains to be seen.<BR><BR>Any ideas?
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