Springtime for Hobbits and Hollywood

Richard Rushfield · 09/10/09 01:23PM

Its a day of rebirth — Hobbits, Wonder Woman, Barry Manilow. They're all ready to become heroes all over again. It's all in the trades.

Ladies Love Cool Elijah

Douglas Reinhardt · 09/09/08 04:00PM

Like the swallows returning to the missions of San Juan Capistrano, all of the women attending the Marc Jacobs fashion show flocked to quirky actor Elijah Wood. The Lord of The Rings star could not find a moment of peace in the tents of Bryant Park. Wood was startled by his newfound status as a hunk, but relished the experience all the same. Wood said, "I always thought that everybody loved Sean Astin from the movies, but I guess it was wrong. Shhh...don't tell my gal pal, but I'm loving this. It's going to make her super jealous and I love it when she's jealous."

Hobbit Homes Halted

Hamilton Nolan · 08/05/08 10:36AM

An Oregon man who built a 31-lot Lord of the Rings-themed development called The Shire—including a house with an attached "hobbit hole," a central area called the "Ring Bearer's Court," and a set of bylaws called the "Declaration of Interdependence"—now faces financial ruin because of the bad real estate market. Or maybe it's because of the Lord of the Rings theme? No, definitely the real estate market. [Bend Bulletin]

Guillermo Del Toro Accidentally Short-Lists Himself for 'Sleepless in Seattle' Remake

STV · 06/16/08 12:40PM

Never saying never might be the smart play for Guillermo Del Toro, who once went off so memorably on the Lord of the Rings franchise ("I was never into heroic fantasy. At all. I don't like little guys and dragons, hairy feet, hobbits — I've never been into that at all. I don't like sword and sorcery, I hate all that stuff") only to commit to directing the godforsaken Hobbit two-fer less than two years later. Alas, he's at it again this month in an interview with Complex Magazine, apparently setting himself up for his first stab at romantic comedy after he returns from New Zealand:

If 'The Hobbit' Must Be Made, We'd Rather See One of These Directors at the Helm

STV · 04/28/08 11:15AM

Our dissatisfaction at Friday's news that Guillermo del Toro would inherit the Hobbit reins from Peter Jackson met with a mix of scorn and curiosity over the weekend. "Pony up an alternative, Cochise," wrote a commenter. "Destroy those two GENIUSES and all we will be left with is Lucas and Spielberg. And that is not a world I wish to live in." Us neither! That said, if the Laws of Hollywood Franchises dictate that this goddamned movie must exist, we can think of at least five talented directors off the tops of our heads whom we'd prefer over del Toro, Jackson or any of the other usual fanboy fantasy suspects. Tell us your own ideal hires after the jump.

'Hobbit' Director Debate Ignores Critical Fact that 'Hobbit' is Rubbish

STV · 04/25/08 06:50PM

There's been much to-do over the last day about Peter Jackson's hiring of Guillermo del Toro to direct the two-part Lord of the Rings prequel The Hobbit. Among our favorite dissenting opinions belongs to Salon critic Andrew O'Hehir, who pulls out his Cannes '06 interview notebook to look up del Toro's sentiment at the time: "I was never into heroic fantasy. At all. I don't like little guys and dragons, hairy feet, hobbits — I've never been into that at all. I don't like sword and sorcery, I hate all that stuff." Our sister blog Gawker doesn't like del Toro's selection either, but we're optimistic this is a perfect match for everyone because The Lord of the Rings, The Hobbit, J.R.R. Tolkien and Guillermo del Toro all fucking suck. Does it really matter which A-list fantasy/horror fanboy with $300 million of Warner Bros.' money and Jackson's imprimatur is going to spend four years jacking off behind a camera in New Zealand? It's going to be unwatchable. Not only that, but didn't Jackson make this movie three times already? Here's our exclusive script excerpt: "EXT. FOREST — DAY. Bilbo Baggins furrows his brow. Visual effects and soundtrack happen. INT. CASTLE — NIGHT. Ian McKellen cameo. More effects. EXT. FOREST — DAY. The end." It's a hit! [Salon]

Why Guillermo Del Toro Should Not Adapt The Hobbit

Alex Carnevale · 04/25/08 10:04AM

Lord of the Rings grandmaster Peter Jackson and New Line announced yesterday that Hellboy and Pan's Labyrinth director Guillermo Del Toro will take on a two-film adaptation of J.R.R. Tolkien's The Hobbit in New Zealand under Jackson's supervision. If this sounds like positive news for those who have been waiting for the kids-oriented prequel to come to the big screen, it's not. Since Peter Jackson took on the mother of all literary adaptations in adapting J.R.R. Tolkien's Lord of the Rings trilogy, the idea that he would bring his epic vision to The Hobbit loomed on the periphery. Don't get us wrong: Del Toro is a talented director whose last films have been critical and commercial successes. The trouble begins once you seriously consider the details of the two-part project and its execution: New Line, which is still feuding with Jackson over the funding of the original trilogy, didn't make the right move in going ahead with this version of The Hobbit. We explain why after the jump.

Gandalf Is The Only Gay in Middle Earth

Richard Lawson · 03/26/08 11:10AM

Sorry slashers and fan fiction enthusiasts, but none of it's real. Ian McKellen, the only openly gay man thought to be "cool" by fourteen year old boys, says that there was no homo hanky panky going on during Lord of the Rings filming. On the adorably named "E-Post" section of his website McKellen answers a reader's question about rampant rumors of hot Orlando Bloom-on-hobbit action by saying: "This gossip is all news to me. Elijah, Dominic and Orlando introduced me to their girlfriends during shooting." The gays were convinced the whispers were true! But Sir Ian wouldn't lie. Ah well. I guess the fantasies will just have to live on in my writing. Like that Bilbo/Gollum 'ship I'm working on that starts so promisingly: "It was nearly time for elevenses in the Shire, but Gollum had already been nibbling on his precious all morning." Delightful! [Towleroad] Two more romantic slash images after the jump.

mark · 02/12/08 02:15PM

Everybody's Suing Everybody Day continues! Accusing New Line of employing the kind of "Hollywood accounting" practices that could secret billions of dollars of Lord of the Rings revenues in suspicious budget lines like "Hair/Make-up Hobbitscaping Services," "Elijah Wood Eye-Desparkling Effects," and "Hide all profits here! Sssssh!," representatives from J.R.R. Tolkein's charitable trust and the author's heirs have filed suit against the studio, looking to be paid their claimed $150 million share of the LOTR bounty: "I think that it's going to be extremely interesting to see how New Line is going to explain to a jury that these films grossed $6 billion and yet by their calculations the creators' heirs are not going to get even a single penny." Given that New Line was rumored to have paid previous profit-seeker Peter Jackson a $40 million settlement to keep their two The Hobbit films on track, Tolkien's heirs can probably convince the company to comb through their allegedly cooked books to shake loose eight-figures' worth of make-nice money before things devolve into ugliness. [NY Times]

mark · 12/19/07 12:35PM

Yesterday, there was much rejoicing in Fanboy Middle Earth following the announcement that director Peter Jackson would return to produce two The Hobbit movies for New Line after settling his dispute over the Lord of the Rings profits the filmmaker said the studio owed him. But how much money did it take for Jackson to rescind his onetime pledge to "feed the greedy [NL co-chairman] Bob Shaye's lifeless body to a hungry Gollum and toss what's left of his well-gnawed remains into the hottest volcano in Mordor before I begin to even think about doing another hairy-midget flick"? About $40 million, according to two people involved. [NY Times]