Monday, 24 February 2014

A visual effects reel for The Desolation of Smaug

I recently came across a pretty cool video showcasing some of the visual effects that were used in The Desolation of Smaug. It contrasts various scenes in the film before and after special effects like CGI were applied. I love these types of videos because I think it's amazing to see the amount of effort and detail that goes into a movie like this. I hope you enjoy it as well.

If you enjoyed this video, I recently posted another one that talks a little bit about the creation of Smaug.

This Hobbit hole is just the right fit

hobbit-hole-artTours of a small Dunedin "hobbit hole" are growing in popularity.

Richard and Myra Wells, of Abbotsford, have opened to the public their 2.5m-long, 1.5m-high and 0.8m-deep hobbit hole that lies beneath a large Scotch elm.

The snug space called "Hobbitsford" has a working brick fire inside and a living grass roof.

Mr. Wells said he and his wife were both members of the Dunedin Open Gardens Association and by-appointment groups to view "Hobbitsford" and the surrounding Elm Tree Garden were getting bigger each tour.

Sunday, 23 February 2014

The Desolation of Smaug opens with record-breaking $32 million weekend in China

bilbo-and-smaug-eye-posterIt’s the biggest debut ever in the territory for a Warner Bros. movie and an Imax record too.

The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug” rolled out with a smashing $32.7 million, No. 1 opening in China this weekend, distributor Warner Bros. reported Sunday.

It’s the biggest three-day opening for a Warner Bros. film ever in China, topping the first "Hobbit" by 74 percent, the studio said.

The opening by “Smaug” is also the biggest three-day opening for a Hollywood title for Imax. The $4.4 million it took in is double the take of the first film, and surpasses the previous record holder “Gravity” with $4.3 million.

The international total for Peter Jackson’s Middle Earth saga is up to $637.1 million, with Japan still to come next weekend. It’s at $893 million worldwide, with $256.6 million coming from North America.


Saturday, 8 February 2014

Lord of the Rings star Sean Astin denies Hobbit return

sean-astin-as-samwise-gamgeeWith Peter Jackson's Hobbit trilogy we've all had the opportunity to see some of our favourite characters from The Lord of the Rings back in Middle-Earth and for the most part it's been brilliant seeing Gandalf and Frodo back. However there's one character we definitely won't be seeing back.

Now, I know that most of you wouldn't be expecting to see him back anyway, as his character doesn't appear in the book and has no right really being in the films, however we have seen Frodo return in a flashback so it's not completely insane to be thinking that there's a possibility that he might return.

Evangeline Lilly in talks to join Marvel's 'Ant-Man'

evangeline-lilly-photoEvangeline Lilly is in early talks to star as the female lead in Marvel’s Ant-Man.

If a deal is made, the actress, best known for her work in TV’s Lost, would star opposite Paul Rudd as the title hero with the ability to shrink down to insect size. The movie is being directed by Edgar Wright.

Also cast so far are Michael Douglas, playing classic Marvel character Dr. Hank Pym, the inventor of the shrinking technology, and Michael Pena, in an undisclosed role.

It is unclear who Lilly would play but it is not intended to be a one-off appearance.

Ant-Man has a release date of July 17, 2015.

Lilly broke though with her role as Kate in ABC’s Lost, where she was part of a love triangle with actors Matthew Fox and Josh Holloway. She appeared briefly in The Hurt Locker, acted opposite Hugh Jackman in Real Steel, and most recently proved that female elves are just as deadly as male ones when she portrayed Tauriel in The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug.


‘Hobbit’ director Peter Jackson sells his Tribeca penthouse for $20 million

peter-jacksonPeter Jackson, best known for directing and producing The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit, has sold his precious New York apartment. Actually, we should say apartments. Back in 2008, Jackson bought a penthouse duplex in the trendy Tribeca neighborhood for $17.35 million with the intention of combining the two units. However, the plan was never carried through. Now someone has bought both units from the New Zealander for $20 million.

The two units combine for over 8,300 square feet of living space, plus 6,000 square feet of outdoor space. They offer eight bedrooms and six baths. The interior features lots of natural wood and exposed beams.

Not a lot of photos of the unit exist, but the 3D model is impressive.

Sunday, 2 February 2014

The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey wins an Annie Award

What has roots as nobody sees,
Is taller than trees 
Up, up, up it goes,
And yet never grows?

The above riddle is told to Bilbo Baggins by Gollum in The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey during the famous Riddles in the Dark scene where Bilbo attempts to defeat Gollum in a game of riddles in order to escape the Misty Mountains.

Is this the end of fantasy worlds?

Below is an article that I found which discusses TV, movie and video game adaptations of fantasy novels. Even though I don't agree with everything the author says, I still found the article interesting and thought that some of you might as well so I decided to share it here. Perhaps it can generate a discussion on the issues that the author raises. Please feel free to share this post if you think someone else may like to read it.

Saturday, 1 February 2014

Peter Jackson discusses The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug

peter-jacksonFor The Desolation of Smaug, the second part of his Hobbit trilogy, Peter Jackson had the tricky task of bringing the story’s raging, intelligent dragon to life. He tells John Hazelton about how the second film brings certain freedoms.

When the subject of trilogies comes up, Peter Jackson, whose The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug is the second part of a three-film version of the JRR Tolkien classic, cannot help chuckling to himself.

“I still can’t quite believe I’m doing it again,” says the genial New Zealander, who a decade ago turned Tolkien’s The Lord of the Rings into the most critically acclaimed and commercially successful film trilogy of all time.