Category Archives: inspiration

More Guyday Friday: it’s gettin’ hot in here . . .

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Thorin Thursday arrives early!: oh, those inappropriate dwarfy thoughts . . .

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Last night I watched “Snow White and the Huntsman.” What can I say, I liked the villain of the piece best of all–Charlize Theron as the mad evil Queen lusting after the heart of her stepdaughter to provide her with the immortal beauty and youth she craves. Snow White was OK, but I certainly am glad Bilbo beat her out for Best Hero. She just didn’t–inspire me.  I wasn’t particularly rooting for her.

As for Snow’s dwarves, well, they were a rather crotchety, crafty bunch, played by a cast of familiar Brit character actors given human dwarf bodies through the magic of CGI. Good performances, but they just weren’t Bilbo’s dwarves.  And not a Thorin amongst them to put inappropriate thoughts in a girl’s head.  They didn’t have his romantic mane of hair, his noble profile, his soulful, beautiful eyes, his deafening roar, his majesty. *sigh*

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So, as more and more folks get their TH DVDs, the continued thudding, squeeing, drooling and sighing over  a certain vertically-challenged hottie takes place around the world. Wonder how many DVDs/Blu-rays have almost been paused and rewound and slo-moed to death already?

Did we ever think we’d feel this way about a sweaty, hairy, almost 200-year-old dwarf?  No, we didn’t. But we DO.

I found a few GIFs on Twitter I thought I would also share with you.  Oh, the joys of Thorin smiling!!

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Someone suggested RA was doing his John the Baptist imitation here with his attire. Whoa–a bit wobbly, are we?? From PJ’s sneak peek of the second film.

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Bilbo, that’s just what so many of us want to do–leap into Thorin’s strong arms! 😉

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Fun Facts & Quotes from The Hobbit ‘Chronicles’

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It’s been a few days since I shared anything from the latest in the series of ‘Chronicles’ books from Weta Workshop. Thought these tidbits about various aspects of the production might make a fun read for Sunday, along with a few more images in glorious HD (thanks to Heirs of Durin) from the film.

And don’t forget if you do have a Twitter account you can vote for Bilbo as “Best Hero” at the 2013 MTV Movie Awards through tonight when the broadcast takes place.http://www.mtv.com/ontv/movieawards/2013/best-hero/  As I write this on Saturday near midnight Bilbo is still in the lead by several thousand, but that could always change . . .

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The Eyes Have It

 Jeffrey Thomas, who plays King Under the Mountain Thror, actually wore colored contact lenses to increase his resemblance to the actors playing his son and grandson, Mike Mizrahi and Richard Armitage, respectively.  All three men have blue eyes, but unlike his light-eyed co-stars, Thomas’s are a very dark blue that resembled black when photographed.  A pale blue contact lens color not only tied him to his son and grandson but also served to “age him as well as give him a hint of the crazy eye, which fits considering his obsession with the gold.” (Tami Lane, prosthetics supervisor)

Cate Blanchett also wore contact lenses for the role of Galadriel. Rather than completely recolor them, these lenses were designed to lighten and enhance Cate’s own pale blue eyes, “making them feel even more remarkable and beautiful, but still based on her natural coloring,” said hair and makeup designer Peter King.

Peter Hambleton, who played the dwarf Gloin, the father of Gimli of LOTR, also wore lenses to change his eye color. “I have blue eyes and we wanted to make a connection with Gimli, whose eyes are brown,” said Hambleton. The actor didn’t require the dark lenses for distant shots, just more close-up ones, and a licensed optician on set would pop them in and out for him (remember, he was wearing those clumsy prosthetic hands). “I hope the brown eyes sing out,” Hambleton said.

Thoughts on Fili and Kili (Dean O’Gorman and Aidan Turner)

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“With no sons of his own, Fili and Kili are his family. Thorin is tough on Fili and overly protective of Kili. He sees their hope and their ambition, their youth. It’s a great driving force for him, to seek out something to bequeath for their future.”    Richard Armitage~Thorin

“Dwarves are a proud and noble people who were at  one time very wealthy. They carry jewelry and ornate plaiting in their beards to show their pride and a way of holding on to their lineage. . . they begin looking very ornate and proud, but their journey humbles and batters them . . . but it isn’t the same for each of them.

‘Fili and Kili don’t have the big, ornate, blinged-out beards of their fathers. They have a different attitude and aren’t as burdened down by the loss that gnaws at Thorin and Gloin and the other Dwarves who are obsessed with the gold. They haven’t decorated themselves as heavily, like kids who can’t see the reason for wearing shoes in a restaurant. They’re not holding onto an old grudge. They’re freer spirits.” Peter King~Hair and Makeup Designer

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“Beards are already in at the moment, but I have to wonder after these films come out whether there might not be a sudden rise in braiding and beard decoration?”  Dean O’Gorman~Fili

“On one level, we’re funny little guys, and on another, we’ve won wars and are actually pretty dangerous  . . . don’t laugh at the Dwarves because they will mess you up.”  DoG

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“It’s tough being a dwarf in Middle-earth. It’s exhausting  . . . they get chased around and for all the times they get caught, they really aren’t wanted anywhere.” ~Aidan Turner-Kili

Saturday Spy Games featuring Luscious Lucas

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Richard as alluring Russian oligarch.  How can a man make references to “dog faeces” sound sexy??ep5_253xxxx

Lucas deals with the duplicitous Sarah Caulfield . . . and looks absolutely delicious doing it. She was right, Lucas–you ARE clever–and beautiful.

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Lucas undercover in Moscow being entertained by the curvaceous asset at the Bedouin Bar. It’s a shame he couldn’t have enjoyed some more time with her after completing his mission . . . nice chemistry there.

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Lucas waiting for Oleg at the assigned spot. Beautiful publicity still. I love the hand here, partially covered by his sleeve, and the intensity of his gaze. Hate to think of the humiliation he is shortly going to endure at the hands of his longtime tormentor . . . and for such an unworthy creature as La Caulfield. Grrrrrrr.

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Richard as Pete the banker in his pinstripes and power tie with his “fiancé.”  What an attractive couple they made.

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Lucas in mentor mode. Loved his scenes with young Dean. *sniff* Here’s another example of him looking sublime in green.

Lucas North–the spy we love. ‘Cause nobody does it better . . .

Go Bil-Bo. Beat Snow-White (Clap-clap-clap-clap-clap!)

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The MTV Movie Awards are Sunday night and one of our own–Martin Freeman, aka Bilbo Baggins of The Hobbit–is up for “Best Hero” against Batman, The Hulk, Catwoman, Ironman and Snow White aka Kristen Stewart.

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There are now over 1,000,000 votes EACH for the two top candidates, Bilbo and Snow White (the rest are far, far, far, far behind). Even though a lot of Twihards are talking about boycotting the awards show (the last Twilight movie only got one nod this year and they feel cheated) plenty of KS fans are voting for her.

Some have apparently threatened violence or have just been needlessly rude over the fact their choice isn’t trouncing all competition.  To this I have to say–come on, guys, let’s all play nice! We are kids at heart but we don’t have to behave like the worst of junior high days.

Maybe some KS fans just assumed she’d walk away with it. Ah, but they didn’t reckon with the power of the Tolkienistas, the Freemanians, Richardettes and the Hobbit Heads, did they? We can be a very determined bunch!

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Me, I have always been one to pull for the little guy, the ordinary fellow, the unlikely hero, the dark horse. And I really want to see this particular little guy with big hairy feet and a willing heart win.  Go to the link below and cast your vote.

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If you are on Twitter, you can also vote with every Tweet by adding #votebilbo to each message.  They are apparently only counting one hashtag per Tweet, so you can use the other characters to say something witty or profound if you wish.

As you can see, the ChaRACters and the CReAtor are also supporting this initiative:

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So go here http://t.co/XGreLY2ei3 and vote to your heart’s content this weekend.  Help an ordinary little hobbit officially achieve “Best Hero” status. He deserves it!  Go, Hobbit-Heads!

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Guy Friday: Beautiful in Black & White

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After last night’s storms, a quiet, cooler day with humidity below 50 percent. This is a good thing. Doing knee strengthening exercises as I put this entry together.  They aren’t all that much fun, but looking at Sir Guy is.  The lashes, the stubble, the delicately-shaped lips that curve into such delicious smirks, the intensity of his gazes, the curls at the nape of his neck, the tousled mane . . . yup, those knees are hurting just a little less now. *sigh* Happy Guyday Friday, dear ones.

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Guyday Friday: The Peacock!

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I quite like peacocks. peacocking Wouldn’t mind having some out here except the dogs would like not give them any peace. Those gorgeous shades of green and blue, such a feast for the eyes!.  Our late, lamented cat Smokie used to sit outside the hall closet door and cry for the large peacock feather (purchased at a cat show we attended) that she knew was tucked away inside there. Fantastic kitty fun!! That pussy loved her peacock plume!

I like peacocks so much I have some peacock-related items on the way:

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To give my updos a bit of color, two of these peacock hair clips.

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And for those moments when hot flashes hit or it’s simply a sticky summer’s day in south Alabama, how lovely it will be to whip out this pretty, peacock-ish hand fan and cool down in style.

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Peacock earrings, for those times I want a bit of bling. All the above not likely to be worn/used at once. 😉

But what, pray tell, do all these things have to do with Sir Guy?

Well, wouldn’t you say our proud, vain, beautiful henchman was just a wee bit of a peacock?

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Just as a male peacock would do, Sir Guy likes to present his–er–plumage and show it off for the ladies. He knows what they want to see. And he’s quite proud of it.

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In honor of Sir Guy and Guyday Friday, here’s my little tongue-in-cheek captioned fanvid tribute to not just the Hot Velvet Henchman, but several of the CReAtor’s delectable characters.

“Whatcha waiting for, it’s time for you to show it off–
“Come on baby, let me see what you’re hiding underneath. . .” 😉 😉 😉

Thorin Thursday: My kind of ‘stormy’

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It’s warm and sultry here this afternoon, thunder rumbling in the distance, with a wind advisory, tornado watch and severe thunderstorm warnings all in place. Oh boy. Buckle your seatbelts, fellow Lower Alabamians, it could be a bumpy night.

Feeling the closeness of the heavy, humid air, I twisted up my hair and clipped it in place with my “Octopus” (what clever hair accessories Goody comes up with!) to get it off my neck. Ah, better now.

I went out to pick up the mail and play with the dogs a little, and felt the flare of pain in the FMS trigger points inside my knees and hips.  FMS no likee tempestuous weather.  However, I am quite fond of a certain rather tempestuous, brooding, heroic warrior dwarf who can roar louder than the fiercest March wind and fight with the  ferocity of a killer tornado. Oh, Thorin, you are my kind of stormy.

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‘First Impressions’ of the Leader of the Company: More from ‘Chronicles II’

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More fascinating tidbits from the latest Weta Workshop book, this time from Peter King, makeup and hair designer:

First impressions are often lasting . . . when you are designing a character for the screen it is vital you get their look absolutely right for the first shots in which they appear . . . so that we impart a message about the character we want them to understand instantly when he walks on screen. Consequently, we put a lot of thought into Thorin, and his arrival in the movie is built up by the other Dwarves as they await his arrival at Bag End.

thehobbit-p1_1274Thorin, as he appears at Bilbo’s door. Our first glimpse of the majestic dwarf in present day.

There is an awe and a reverence that surrounds him. He is very strong and slightly scary, but also hypnotic and charismatic. Thorin is the leader, a king among his people and the Dwarf upon whose shoulders the future and hopes of his people rests.

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I have to say that I was “wowed” by the first impression of Thorin when Gandalf opened that door to him.  Charismatic? Absolutely. Hypnotic? Hmmmmm–was I saying . . . oh, yes. Definitely.

I was truly awed.  (Not that I expected anything less than awesome with Mr. A involved.)

King discusses how Thorin’s look evolved:

We went through a number of iterations before we settled upon his final makeup, which consisted of a thin forehead and nose, wig and ear. Thorin’s nose was Romanesque, which imparted a sense of nobility. His wig was also composed entirely of human hair, without any yak, which was used to add body to some of the other dwarves. That allowed it to flow and move more romantically.

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*sigh* Works for me, Mr. King. Works for me.

As for Thorin’s beard, King has this to say:

For the same reason, Thorin’s beard ended up clipped quite close to preserve his more refined appearance and to not hide the actor under a full face of hair. It was important for people to understand and relate to Thorin so we didn’t want to build a wall of hair in front of him that would impede that in any way.

Very wise decision, sir. That face is much too expressive to hide it all under heavy prosthetics and excess facial hair.

And here are some thoughts from Mr. Armitage himself:

Early on in the shaping of Thorin’s look, we had some quite extreme prosthetics and elaborate beard designs. I was very pleased with the effort, which was such a transformation.  I looked like another being–older, and very much like a Dwarf.  As the design began to change, with resculpting, reshaping and stripping back, I realized that is was a process we were going through, to find a point at which Thorin and the actor inside him were both visible.  Of course, that feels like a great compliment, although Richard Taylor did tell me fairly near to the end of filming that they straightened my nose, which is apparently off-center . . . I didn’t know that!

Gosh, I thought his real nose was darned near perfect. Perfect in its imperfection. And truly noble.

And I do love that romantic hair . . .  I think it’s time for my “Thorin: King Under the Hair” fanvid!

What would YOU ask Richard Armitage? Redux

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I asked this question in a blog entry last summer prior to Comic-Con. Because haven’t we all fantasized about being able to conduct our dream interview with Richard Armitage?

Or, in my case, I actually dreamed I did interview him and in the back of a limo, no less (sadly, I can remember none of the questions, just how charming and funny and gorgeous he was).  Speaking of gorgeous, let’s look at that footie action from Magic FM again, shall we?

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With the recent flurry of new interviews prior to the DVD release of THAUJ, the whole WWYARA question popped into my mind again.  We’ve seen the same old chestnuts about the circus *sigh* fun ones about whether or not he does impressions of other cast members (earning us that delightful “ooooh, BIL-BO Baggins . . .” in the Bin Weevils interview), and, frankly, strange queries about whether or not Thorin would rather fight horse-sized ducks or duck-sized horses. That one still has me scratching my head. The person who submitted that must have been on something stronger than my Kahlua and Coke. 😉

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Would you ask him questions about Thorin? Does he ever fear being typecast as Tolkien’s heroic dwarf?  Or  would you ask him about past characters and their development and, perhaps, what the future held for them after the scriptwriters finished their work (or in some cases, their hatchet jobs. Looking at you, Spooks people)?  Are there any of his past characters he would long to see brought to life on the big screen?

How about future projects? Looks like he’s been queried enough about RIII at this point, as well as any future prospects of a VoD reunion. Favorite novels (other than The Master and Margarita) he’d like to see become screenplays?  He’s said he wants to do smaller, more intimate film with a great, literate script–any specific director he’d love to work with? Does he still have directing aspirations of his own? Dream cast he’d love to direct?

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The Master and Margarita (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Would you ask if he’d consider doing a voice role in an animated feature for, say, Disney/Pixar?  Because he all know he’s a great storyteller for children  . . . and he loves the studio’s films.  How about the possibility of narrating more audiobooks? Is there a list of books he’s dreamed of recording?

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Would you ask about his favorite films, books, music, TV (assuming he’s gotten to watch any) over the past year?  Is there a television series he’d love to appear in (Game of Thrones, anyone?)?  But then again, he’s trying to get away from the action/violence genre, so, possibly a comedy or period drama such as Downton Abbey?

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Downton Abbey visits Seattle (Photo credit: KCTS OO9)

Or how about the best advice he’s ever been given as an actor? Who most inspires him as an actor? What counsel would he give to aspiring actors?

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Favorite chocolate ice cream blend? Rocky Road? Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough? Or just pure, rich, unadulterated chocolate? Does he like it with whipped cream and a cherry on top? OK, getting silly here, but I suspect he likes a little silliness tossed in here and there. The man obviously loves to laugh.  And there is always “What are you listening to on your iPod right now?”

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ipod shuffle loja online leilao (Photo credit: sucelloleiloes)

And hey, my new Weta Workshop book was just delivered by spouse. Arrived a day early! Hooray!!  Here it includes this photo, which I found courtesy of Servetus at FB:

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Can’t wait to discover any other gems within that volume! Loving Mr. A in green. NTM the beard and muscles and everything . . . and isn’t Adam a cutie?

And again, I ask, what would YOU ask Mr. A? Do tell!

Tonight, I will be nursing the Even Worse Knee (yep, fell again) and perusing my new book. I am sure I will have something to share from it later. 😀

(other screencaps courtesy of Richard Armitage Net)

One of those days–but here’s Thorin & his CReAtor

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I was up in the wee hours working on some RL stuff in Photoshop (yes, something other than RA) and then never got going with much of anything today. FMS, some of Bechep’s doubt fairies, allergies, feeling dumpy and old,  all conspired against me, I suppose.  More work to do tonight, but at least I know where I am going with it.  I think . . .

Someone else who dealt with self-doubt and feeling burdened is our own hero Thorin Oakenshield.  I do love a hero to whom I can relate, and to an actor with whom I equally feel a certain kinsmanship, although I have no royal blood flowing through these veins.

Now, back to the salt mines . . .

 

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Nimue’s HobbitCon Memories: ‘Waves of Affection and Goosebump Moments’

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Nimue kindly shared some of her HobbitCon experiences with us in the comment section of a previous post, and I enjoyed them so much, I felt they deserved a post of their own here on Thorin Thursday.  It certainly sounds like it was a fabulous event for fans of the film and has whetted my appetite even more to see the next installment in December! Thanks again, Nimue, for sharing highlights of this fab experience with us here at TAE. I have used some of DarkJackal’s screencaps from the film and from the Best Buy doc to add some more Hobbit-y dwarfy goodness. 😀

I was at the HobbitCon -it really was such an amazing and unforgettable experience! I’m still over the moon! The actors were so nice and approachable-they mixed with the normal people, often sat amongst us in the audience during each other’s panels, listening and sometimes intervening ,-). It could happen that you found yourself next to one of them in the lift or at the breakfast buffet, which I found kind of surreal sometimes, but great nevertheless!

They even were at the parties and told us beforehand that we could ask them questions. Really and truly very fine guys- each and every one of them! In their behaviour to each other you could see and feel, that they are not only colleagues but have become close friends.

Most of the time they needn’t to be asked about Richard, but mentioned him on their own. And their great admiration, respect and friendship for him was so sincere and really palpable I sometimes was nearly moved to tears. You could virtually feel the waves of affection all over the place! Goosebumps moments! My impression was that Richard was especially close with Graham (who mentioned that he auditioned for the role of Thorin as well) – a true gentleman like Richard himself.

 

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BTW- as to one of your quotes above, concerning the mail exchange between RA and Adam ( so funny and cute- the poor guy was kind of shaky at the opening ceremony)- Richard wrote that he couldn’t answer him right now, as he was “on top of a mountain” . Mount Everest/Machu Picchu – mountaineering or skiing ;-) ?

Anyway, we got such a great amount of information, I’m still processing! According to their behaviour and their tweets, all of the actors enjoyed the experience as well ( the Gameshow they did- ” Tossing the dwarves”- was a hoot, I think for them and the audience, we nearly died with laughter). They said they’d like to come back- maybe persuading Richard as well ;-)

I really grew very fond of (the actors). Liked them all before, but having met them in person is something completely different. The word “fellowship” comes to mind when you see them in each other’s company. It was e.g. really cute seeing Dean and Adam walking around the lobby, Dean having his arm over Adam’s shoulders. Sylvester McCoy also is one of a kind- very charming and extremely hilarious- I was in stitches. A bundle of energy like Jedi (Jed Brophy)- always on the go. He also is a very good-smelling wizard. I know now the eau de parfum he uses- and it is not ” Eau de dwarf” ;-) .

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Graham said that Richard took great care that they all were very well looked after on set (enough time in the cooling tents etc.) like a good leader would. He told us about the rings they all had made- each one has a special, individual engraving and a picture on the inside to remind them of the bond they formed. At one point I even saw him wearing the ring. He said that in a way their role in the movie corresponded to their real-life position in the group- Adam being the “baby/youngster”, Richard the leader who inspired utter loyalty. etc.

There really were a lot of highlights. The boys seemingly all like dancing- I remember Adam doing some Beyonce dance moves and allegedly some (funny) dancing was sometimes going on behind the scenes on set as well ;-)  Jed and Mark did some dancing on stage. For PJ’s birthday calendar, Aidan and Dean did the Tango together, with Aidan dipping Dean, who had a rose in his mouth. Sir Peter is said to keep the “naughty calendar” in his bathroom. The guys are all starting or ramping up their training again. Jed in particular is very athletic, always doing cartwheels, splits etc. Mark was full of praise for Richard’s fighting and riding skills.

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When asked what was especially funny, they mentioned the barrel scene. They weren’t allowed to talk about it yet, but we are in for a treat when we can watch the behind-the-scenes special on one of the next DVDs. I wonder if it has got something to do with Richard’s fish throwing ;-) .
Probably we will also see more of the dwarven underwear in the next two films :-) . “The Adam Thing” is also one of the mysteries that only will be solved when we’ll get to see the material for the next movie.

It was my first Con experience and I was surprised how lovely and kind of intimate the atmosphere was. I’ve been told by more experienced RingCon visitors, that the HobbitCon really was very special in that regard.

‘A concentrating actor’: Richard on his acting & the challenges of The Hobbit

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 From Facebook. Thanks to Ali at Richard Armitage Net for the link. Well worth reading, although I found myself sorely tempted to edit out some typos. 😉 How do you spell Oakenshield??
One of the most interesting aspects is we now know RA definitely doesn’t think of himself as a Method actor.
Having read Alfred Hitchcock’s fascinating bio recently and learned how he wanted a leading man with sexual charisma and a dark, edgy, dangerous feel (and wasn’t always able to get what he wanted due to studio issues), I’ve envisioned RA in a Hitchcock film. After all, one of his favorite films is one of Hitch’s-“North by Northwest.”
However, Hitch was not particularly fond of Method actors, who frequently tried his patience (he actually had more affection and respect for the acting profession than has been reported; after all, his daughter, Patricia, became an actress).   However, I think the director would have found working with RA very rewarding indeed . . .
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Alfred Hitchcock, head-and-shoulders portrait, facing right (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey – Richard Armitage (Thorin Okensheild) DVD Q
by Magnavision Home Video (Notes) on Wednesday, April 3, 2013 at 12:44am

QUESTION: What was the greatest challenge for you to act in this film?

RICHARD ARMITAGE: I think the greatest challenge of taking on Thorin was to attempt to make such a physical transformation feel real.  Our body shapes change.  We wore a considerable amount of padding, huge boots and a facial prosthetic which at first was kind of limiting. It meant that you had to animate your own face more to make sure that the expression that you were feeling inside was being transported through the makeup. So that was a physical challenge. In terms of the character I think layering the character with this inner fear of driving sickness and madness and the horror of what happened in the mountain; but at the same time show his dwarves the face of a leader that was not afraid, that was something that fascinated me.

QUESTION: Had you been a fan of the books?  Did you grow up reading the series?

RICHARD ARMITAGE: I read “The Hobbit” when I was 11 years old.  Then when I was 13, I was in a stage production, a very local piece of theater with no money. Gollum was made of paper, I remember that very clearly.  I was paid 15 pounds a week.  But that led me on to read “The Lord of the Rings.”  Then I watched the animated version, which was never finished, in the ’80s. I remember being very frustrated that it was never finished.  Then, of course, Peter[Jackson]’s trilogy defined the entire cannon in Middle Earth and that was incredibly fulfilling. I went back to read Rings again after that.

Gollum in Ralph Bakshi's animated version of T...

Gollum in Ralph Bakshi’s animated version of The Lord of the Rings (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

QUESTION: Do you feel that there’s a certain sequence or scene that stands out as your favorite part of the film?

RICHARD ARMITAGE: From my viewing of it, or from my playing in it?

QUESTION: Let’s take it from your viewing.

RICHARD ARMITAGE: The sequence I found incredibly moving is the sequence at the end when the eagles pick up the injured party and take them to safety.  I think all of the ordeals that this crew has gone through and the terrible dilemma that maybe their leader is dead is traumatic.  There’s this incredibles oaring sequence of stillness.  It feels like some kind of salvation; I was moved to tears when I saw that moment because it’s such a relief after such extreme circumstances.

In terms of what was the most important moment for me to film, I think my first time on location,which was being directed by Andy Serkis. I was helicoptered to the top of a mountain where there were no roads or no power cables. There was no sign of any human life there.  There were just three of us dwarves with some food in a backpack. He did 360 degree helicopter shots all day.  So we were left alone in character.  I remember feeling absolutely immersed in the character.  It’s in the prologue; I’m thrilled by that.

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QUESTION: Would you describe yourself as a method actor?

RICHARD ARMITAGE: No I wouldn’t.  I wouldn’t describe myself as a method actor.  I think other people apply that label.  I think I’m a concentrating actor.  So in order to do my work in the course of a day, particularly with a character like this I have to concentrate.  So it’s about staying in the scene, staying with my head in the scene and attempting to keep the character with me.  It doesn’t mean I can’t have a conversation or go and make a cup of coffee. But I actually stay with the character for 18 months.

QUESTION: Other than your own character, who’s your favorite?

RICHARD ARMITAGE: I think my favorite character has to be Mr. Baggins.  He’s the heart of the story.  He’s the character that the audience fall in love with and follow on his journey.  They fear for him, they hope for him.  He’s endearing and hilarious to watch.

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Oh, Richard, it’s not just Bilbo with whom audiences fell in love. Thorin has his own legion of admirers, too. Thank you for all you did to bring him to life for us.   (HD screencaps courtesy of Heirs of Durin and DarkJackal–thanks!)

Dwarf love for the Leader of the Company: Comments from HobbitCon

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I never grow tired of reading or hearing Richard Armitage’s co-workers discussing what a good guy he is. I think it would be easy to be jealous of and snarky about someone like RA– so blo0dy tall and handsome, so charismatic and talented–and yet he seems to be universally well-liked because he is also truly kind, generous, modest and sweet, with no particular airs and graces. You’d pretty much have to be a troll–or an orc or goblin, methinks–NOT to like him.

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(screencaps courtesy of Heirs of Durin unless otherwise noted; photo edits are my own)

Here’s what some of the actors who made up the dwarves in his Company in The Hobbit had to say about RA at HobbitCon in Bonn recently. Thank you, Herba and also Ali at Richard Armitage Net who shared additional quotes supplied to her via tweets. I confess shedding some tears as I read these words of praise for RA from the guys who spent two years training, rehearsing, filming and living alongside him.

I think under such circumstances you are bound to get to know something of the “real” person, and the “real” person named Richard Armitage is pretty special, indeed. *sigh* I have that sudden urge to hug his mother again, you know?

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RA manfully (dwarfully?) striding forth as the leader of the Company during Dwarf Boot Camp prior to filming of TH.

“When we were done shooting & Richard left the set we’d just follow because he’s such the perfect leader” Jed Brophy 

“How you imagine him to be is exactly how he is, wonderful, kind, and natural leader to our group” Graham

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“Yes he was . The nicest human I have met” Jed Brophy

“Richard was one of my neighbours in New Zealand and we had often breakfast together. He is a generous person and we had to follow him. He totally nailed Thorin.” Jed Brophy

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The lovely, caring, boyish Mr. Armitage peeks out of Thorin’s eyes and smile as he studies his mini-Lego doppelganger. Don’t think I will ever stop loving this photo.

“Richard is a sincere guy, really lovely and caring and the leader of the actors,like Thorin is the leader of the dwarves.” Graham MacTavish

Richard Armitage is a lovely guy. SOme weeks ago I mailed him a question and two minutes later he mailed back and said: ‘Sorry, I can’t answer at the moment but I’ll come back to you as fast as I can.” Adam Brown

“Richard is real and honourable and I was totally in awe when Richard did his first speech in Bag End, I think we were all moved in a really truthful way.” (Graham McTavish nodded) Mark Hadlow

“The amount of energy that Richard put in that role was amazing!” John Callen

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Richard using some of that amazing energy in preparing for the role.

“Richard was really good at the fight training.” Mark Hadlow

“He sat in his fatsuit the wrong way round on a chair, one hand on the back of the chair, the other hand held on Orcrist like a walking stick and his head with Thorin’s long hair leant back. And you also see Dwalin’s hand with a blow-dryer.” Graham MacTavish  (I love visualizing this description, frankly)

“Richard did a lot of homework (Tolkien related).” Adam Brown

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This image is courtesy of the lovely Bechep at “Such is Life.” Thank you, my dear!