Well, feeling better than I was earlier today, thank goodness. And I am thinking about Richard Armitage once more. I know. What a surprise.
I rewatched that last production vlog again earlier in anticipation of writing this second blog entry on it. Once again, I found myself thoroughly enjoying the entire thing. What an exciting journey it has been thus far! And how fortunate I feel to have the opportunity to be part of it thanks to Sir Peter’s efforts to share it with us.
The focus of this entry is to be Mr. A, but first I have to reiterate how much I admire and appreciate the infectious spirit of camaraderie and team work seen in the cast and crew of The Hobbit. I can only believe that is a positive work environment for all involved.
Something that particularly struck me on this viewing was Sir Peter’s expression of nerves on his way to Comic-Con. Of course, a tremendous amount rides on the reception of these films, yet the fact this celebrated genius of the cinema was so concerned about a positive outcome at an event which is largely fan-based touched me. The fans, as he said, are his kind of people, and he wants them to be pleased with what he’s doing.
Oh, and I must give a shout-out this time around to the charming T-shirts I actually noticed on first viewing (yes, I actually did catch things other than a certain hot dwarf and his Creator) for those working with second unit director, the multi-talented Andy Serkis: “Andy’s Flying Serkis.” Gotta love those!!
Now, on to RA.
He looks fantastic, doesn’t he?
A happy and healthy-looking Richard Armitage. I do find those flecks of grey in his beard quite endearing.
Of course, we all saw him looking quite relaxed and fit and truly gorgeous at Comic-Con. But this vlog gave us an opportunity to see more of him along the way—the sort of moments we saw so few of in earlier production vlogs. There were amusing moments, breathtaking moments (he really is absolutely beautiful as Thorin), moments of quiet reflection and boisterous tomfoolery.
Some of my favorite RA moments:
Richard playing “footsy” with the other dwarfs in those great cumbersome boots. I love him in jeans, of course, but we don’t see nearly enough of him in shorts IMHO. Legs like those deserve to be showcased. And once more that dancer’s stance shines through.
Poetic Armitage. Like everyone else, his evocative comments about those early arrivals at Stone Street with the stars still shining in the sky struck a particular chord with me. The man may have the profile of a king and the body of an Adonis, but he’s got the heart of a poet.
His ability to focus. The sense that he is “all there” and never slumming always strikes me. I love seeing these behind-the-scenes glimpses of Richard at work. Those azure eyes and elfin ears (rather more elfin than usual, even if he’s playing a dwarf) take it all in, don’t they?
Ah, that intent, focused gaze.
Younger Thorin? I do believe—judging by the attire and also the lack of grey hair here—this must be younger Thorin in battle. I see a hint of Sir Guy in his expression. I don’t know if it makes Sir Guy happy—I still avoid mentioning a certain warrior dwarf in his presence—but it makes me happy. And all the more eager to see younger and older Thorin on the big screen.
Leaping Armitage. It’s a “blink and you miss it” moment, but when in that one scene in which Martin is cutting up with the dwarfs you can just glimpse a tall, dark-haired fellow jumping in the air on the left side of the screen. I could only recall his Cats days—and smile.
Cheeky Armitage. He’s grown into a beautiful mature man but it’s fun to see the boyish, cheeky, flirty side of him peeping out at us. Sticking out his tongue at Graham MacTavish. Tossing that fish at Adam Brown. Like others, I had worried somewhat that he might be so caught up in the angsty gravitas of Thorin he never really let his hair down.
Moments like these make me think he also knew how to kick back and be a cheeky monkey along the way.
I recall what the stuntmen on Strike Back said: “He’s one of us.” I suspect that is exactly how the crew felt about RA—the hard-working, good-natured, gentlemanly, down-to-earth fellow we all know and love- after working with him for a year and a half. And I do believe he has so many wonderful memories he will treasure for the rest of his life from his NZ odyssey.
And now with these continued speculations that a third film is not, in fact, out of consideration . . . so he may be spending more time Down Under. Who knows? I just know I am now eagerly awaiting a post-production vlog from our friend Sir Peter . . .
And, of course, news of sightings of Mr. A in the Midwest re the “tornado movie.” I think these next few months are going to be very exciting for us all.