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TiggerBear
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Re: Hobbit Movie

The man himself, Guillermo del Toro, who may or may not be directing ‘The Hobbit’, has posted a very curious comment on our own message boards. Del Toro has mentioned recently at a New York convention that an announcement is imminent…decipher what you will from his post!
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
(shudder)
please, oh please don't let them hand it over to Del Toro.
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lorien
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Re: Hobbit Movie


TiggerBear wrote:
The man himself, Guillermo del Toro, who may or may not be directing ‘The Hobbit’, has posted a very curious comment on our own message boards. Del Toro has mentioned recently at a New York convention that an announcement is imminent…decipher what you will from his post!
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
(shudder)
please, oh please don't let them hand it over to Del Toro.




I have only seen his "Pan´s Labyrinth" and it was a bit too cruel and violent for my liking. I don't know if that is typical of him. It also seem kind of mystical. I don't know if he is the right choice for a more light-hearted film like The Hobbit. My impression is that he is the choice and they are only working out the details.
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oldBPLstackdenizen
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Re: Hobbit Movie

A Very Early Good Morning To All ---
 
It's simply a darn shame that P.J. and Wingnut could not have been retained to do the "Hobbit" films.
I know I have ( from time to time ) moaned and groaned the loudest against his "transgressions" against the "sacred text" of LOTR, but if the sake of consistency, if nothing else - it would have been preferable to have
Mr. Jackson ( and his crew ) re-hired to  to complete the follow-up "prequels" to the LOTR movies. ---
I know that in the future, there will be no end of different versions and interpretations of "The Hobbit" and
LOTR made, just as there have already been so many different versions and re-makes of other
Classics of Literature made before this - that is inevitable.
But, it is too bad Mr. Jackson was not allowed to finish his "presentation" first. 
Wishfully thinking:
Perhaps this is all a ruse by New Line Cinema ( and their new "parent company" ) to throw a smoke-screen
over everything until the lawsuits get sorted out?
Or even a ploy to get Mr. Jackson to drop his own lawsuit? ( doubtful ) ---
 
Or is it simply a matter of New Line thumbing their noses at everone concerned?
 
Ardo
"Middle-earth Is A State Of Mind"
^^^^^^^ ^^^ ^^^^^^^^^

Ardo Whortleberry
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oldBPLstackdenizen
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Re: Hobbit Movie

...or is it simply a case of New Line thumbing their noses at everyone concerned? ( most likely ) --- Ardo
   
"Middle-earth Is A State Of Mind"
^^^^^^^ ^^^ ^^^^^^^^^

Ardo Whortleberry
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TiggerBear
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Re: Hobbit Movie

I have only seen his "Pan´s Labyrinth" and it was a bit too cruel and violent for my liking. I don't know if that is typical of him. It also seem kind of mystical. I don't know if he is the right choice for a more light-hearted film like The Hobbit. My impression is that he is the choice and they are only working out the details.
------------------------------------------------------------------------------
That is heavy sad news. I hope that gets changed. Because, yes "Pan's" is the normal line he rides. Actually its one of his most less blooded. His only normal movie is "Hellboy" which the original author kept tight reigns on. They let the reigns loose on "Hellboy 2", and the previews are retched. Del Toro twist and darkens any work he gets his mitts on.
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Fanuidhol
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Re: Hobbit Movie



oldBPLstackdenizen wrote:
A Very Early Good Morning To All ---
 
It's simply a darn shame that P.J. and Wingnut could not have been retained to do the "Hobbit" films.
I know I have ( from time to time ) moaned and groaned the loudest against his "transgressions" against the "sacred text" of LOTR, but if the sake of consistency, if nothing else - it would have been preferable to have
Mr. Jackson ( and his crew ) re-hired to  to complete the follow-up "prequels" to the LOTR movies. ---
I know that in the future, there will be no end of different versions and interpretations of "The Hobbit" and
LOTR made, just as there have already been so many different versions and re-makes of other
Classics of Literature made before this - that is inevitable.
But, it is too bad Mr. Jackson was not allowed to finish his "presentation" first. 
Wishfully thinking:
Perhaps this is all a ruse by New Line Cinema ( and their new "parent company" ) to throw a smoke-screen
over everything until the lawsuits get sorted out?
Or even a ploy to get Mr. Jackson to drop his own lawsuit? ( doubtful ) ---
 
Or is it simply a matter of New Line thumbing their noses at everone concerned?
 
Ardo


Ardo, I'm confused.  I can't find the article you are referring to...
It has been known for quite some time that PJ wasn't going to direct "The Hobbit" films.  He is/was the producer though.
And I thought that Jackson settled with New Line....
Fan
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lorien
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Re: Hobbit Movie

Fan wrote:
Ardo, I'm confused. I can't find the article you are referring to...
It has been known for quite some time that PJ wasn't going to direct "The Hobbit" films. He is/was the producer though.
And I thought that Jackson settled with New Line....
Fan
---------------------------------------

That was my understanding as well. Jackson settled his differences with New Line quite some time ago but he now has other commitments so he can't direct. He is the producer and the 2nd Hobbit film is totally his idea and vision. Without Jackson there would probably be only one Hobbit film--the original and not the sequel to cover 50 years between TH and LOTR.
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lorien
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Re: Hobbit Movie

[ Edited ]
It looks like this big lawsuit is doing the predictable thing, they are clearing up their differences behind close doors on their own.

http://www.kristinthompson.net/blog/?p=247#more-247

My feeling is all this is about the base sum the percentages are based on. I notice that most of the talk I've seen here and in press statements is about "gross" income, which is total box office receipts. But the talks are more concerned with amount of actual expenses of making the movie (which was considerable and complex). I believe actual net income (which might be the real issue here) is gross income after you have paid all your bills. But the words "net" income can mean different things. For instance most people, if they are salaried, consider as net or gross (depending on hose they look at it) the income they have in their paycheck after their taxes are deducted but before they pay their bills--the money they actually put in their pocket.

My feeling is this is all just an accounting problem and at issue is whether the movie cost as much as what New Line said it did, maybe how they counted gross receipts and maybe the definition of what actual sum the 7.5% (and other claims) should be based on. I also don't think this has that much to do with the "poor" Tolkien children and their charities but that other parties are involved. The Tolkien children is just a better "face" to put on the the case and stating that they never got a "penny" plays better to public sympathy as well. Discussing the accounting principles and the complex relationships of the parties evolved just doesn't play well in the press.

So right now a bunch of accountants are working it all out and parties are trying to negotiate things so they get to keep or get more money. With the threat of delaying The Hobbit, the plaintiffs have a good bargaining chip but they know if the Hobbit is delayed too long it might not happen (note: dissolving New Line and firing just about all their employees is a good bargaining chip on the other side) and everyone loses out. They will negotiate something--this is purely business and the way it works in these complex relations where a lot of money is involved and there are ambiguities in in what was agreed on.

Message Edited by lorien on 04-23-2008 11:15 AM
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lorien
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Re: Hobbit Movie

It looks like I wasn't far off the mark with my rather simplistic analysis. For starters here is the problem with the definition of "Gross" Receipts:

-----------------------
The payment situation might seem on the face of it clear. New Line obviously earned gross revenues from the trilogy. That’s not gross box-office income as reported on sites like Box Office Mojo, since theaters keep part of that, and foreign distributors bought the rights to distribute the trilogy in their respective countries and would keep all or most of the rentals paid by theaters. Still, New Line clearly took in a lot of money. It paid Saul Zaentz, Miramax, and Peter Jackson large sums based on gross revenues. What gives?

There’s one provision that affects this issue. The 1969 agreements specified that the 7.5% was to be paid “after a contractually-defined ‘Artificial Payment Level’ is reached.” According to the lawsuit,

The 1969 agreements expressly define “Gross Receipts” to include “all moneys derived by the distributor of the photoplay” less certain defined “off-the-top” expenses. The 1969 Agreements define the “Artificial Payment Level” as that point at which the “Gross Receipts” exceed 2.6 times the defined “final cost of production of the photoplay,” plus certain other defined costs. (p. 67, paragraph 22)
---------------------------

For those of you who really want to know the facts of the case beyond the "for public" statements made in the press, here is the dull story:

http://www.kristinthompson.net/blog/?p=193

And as far as the Tolkien family is concerned specifically, this from the NY Times:

The Tolkien suit may prove to be especially troublesome for New Line, if only because it has the earmarks of a public relations nightmare. The plaintiffs include a charitable trust that is overseen by family members of the author, who died in 1973, and includes among its beneficiaries worthy organizations like the Darfur Appeal and the World Cancer Research Foundation.

Asked why the Tolkiens waited so long to file their complaint — New Line’s first “Rings” movie was released in 2001 — Bonnie Eskenazi, a lawyer with the Los Angeles firm Greenberg Glusker Fields Claman & Machtinger, said it was because they are proper, and British. “They do things politely, in a certain manner,” said Ms. Eskenazi, who added that the family tried for years to settle without going to court. But it became obvious to the trusts, she said, that New Line “was not going to meet their obligations unless they were sued.”

:smileywink:
---------------

And a little bit more readible but still informative explanation from the NY Times:

http://www.nytimes.com/2008/02/16/movies/16ring.html?_r=2&th&emc=th&oref=slogin&oref=slogin
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lorien
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Re: Hobbit Movie



lorien wrote:
Fan wrote:
Ardo, I'm confused. I can't find the article you are referring to...
It has been known for quite some time that PJ wasn't going to direct "The Hobbit" films. He is/was the producer though.
And I thought that Jackson settled with New Line....
Fan
---------------------------------------

That was my understanding as well. Jackson settled his differences with New Line quite some time ago but he now has other commitments so he can't direct. He is the producer and the 2nd Hobbit film is totally his idea and vision. Without Jackson there would probably be only one Hobbit film--the original and not the sequel to cover 50 years between TH and LOTR.




Here are some facts on Peter Jackson and his involvement in The Hobbit film. He is producer
"Jackson and partner Fran Walsh will serve as Executive Producers, and New Line will manage the production."

Here is the whole story:

http://www.kristinthompson.net/blog/?p=159
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oldBPLstackdenizen
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Re: Hobbit Movie

Good Afternoon, lorien ( and Everyone ) ---
 
You think you were confused? Boy, was I EVER confused! The letter that I said was "just in" was sent in November of 2006! I guess those "mail runners" in this part of the Shire are especially slow! :smileyvery-happy: What I described finding in the letter was true back then - but obviously I need to pay closer attention sometimes before I start mouthing off. ---
 
I'm getting lost in all this legal wrangling, but I still think it's odd that they ( New Line ) have managed to settle with Mr. Jackson and Mr. Zaentz, but is taking so long to settle with the Tolkien Estate and those Publishers in the UK. Call it just a "hunch" ( and, of course, my "hunch" could be all wrong ) - but I still don't feel like the Tolkien Heirs are simply being used as "tools" by some greedy Publishing firms ( or other interests ) in order to "hijack" the "Hobbit Express" ---
The Movie Corporation would have nothing- nada -zilch - if it hadn't been for the creative genius of JRRT - and on account of there already existing a "pre-built-in fan base" of Middle-earth lovers who had been anxiously awaiting a cinematic version of LOTR for years already. 
 
As the Plaintiff's lawyers put it in their Complaint:
[ ...Due in no small part to the universality of Tolkien's themes, the immense and enduring popularity of
Tolkien's literary works, and the devoted following of Tolkien fans around the world, the films smashed box office records... ]
 
It just seems to me like one of the first obligations of the Movie Moguls would have been to pay out to Tolkien's heirs  - and even to the publishing companies as well .
The Plaintiff's also alledge that the Movie Corporation "cooked the books" -and found a way to exagerate the cost of the production by about a hundred million dollars, at one point...
It's not so much a case of elicting sympathy for those "poor" Tolkien children, so much as an attempt to elicit outrage that they have thus far been short-changed to such an extreme degree from what is rightfully theirs -
( at least, that's the way it all appears to me ) ---
 
Otherwise, it's a relief to know Mr. Jackson and his crew will still be participating in the new movie's process
although, I don't know if I like the feel of this new Director- I wonder if there will wind up being wrangling between this Toro guy, and P.J. as to just how the new movie is to be made, once production actually gets underway? Perhaps if P.J. has the "final say" on everything, everything will turn out more or less all right -
well, we will but wait and see...
 
Ardo Whortleberry
( From Way Out Over In Hobottle - Where The Mail Delivery Is So Slow! )
 
 
"Middle-earth Is A State Of Mind"
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Ardo Whortleberry
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JesseBC
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Re: Hobbit Movie

The Tolkien vs. New Line case really doesn't lend itself well to anything more than pub chat.

Opinions as to who's right or wrong in that situation are largely irrelevant. It's just a contract dispute and that's likely how the courts will settle it (if the parties don't settle out of court on their own).

While it's not as on-topic to this forum, if people really want to discuss higher principles, the Rowling vs. Vander Ark case is much more well-suited to that.

The parties don't have a contractual relationship and the dispute is based much more on principle.

Neither side is showing any sign of backing down and the original court's decision will probably be appealed no matter who it favors.

But the decision could have an enormous impact on what's considered fair use and what writers will be allowed to do in critical or scholarly interpretations, let alone adaptations, of original material.

(The irony in that case being how much of Harry Potter was stitched together from references to other original material in the first place.)
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lorien
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Re: Hobbit Movie

You are absolutely right Jesse. The Rowling/Vander Ark case is very significant and I wondered why they do not seem interested in the Harry Potter group. Probably because it has little directly to do with Harry Potter but does have deep significance as far what an other writer can write about a book. And this along with the Tolkien suit has more to do with the power and control of publishers and other big money interests. The "little" people are irrelevant. Interestingly enough this case also centers around Warner Bros.

http://www.harvardindependent.com/node/244

If some people were interested, we could set up an OT thread.



JesseBC wrote:
The Tolkien vs. New Line case really doesn't lend itself well to anything more than pub chat.

Opinions as to who's right or wrong in that situation are largely irrelevant. It's just a contract dispute and that's likely how the courts will settle it (if the parties don't settle out of court on their own).

While it's not as on-topic to this forum, if people really want to discuss higher principles, the Rowling vs. Vander Ark case is much more well-suited to that.

The parties don't have a contractual relationship and the dispute is based much more on principle.

Neither side is showing any sign of backing down and the original court's decision will probably be appealed no matter who it favors.

But the decision could have an enormous impact on what's considered fair use and what writers will be allowed to do in critical or scholarly interpretations, let alone adaptations, of original material.

(The irony in that case being how much of Harry Potter was stitched together from references to other original material in the first place.)

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lorien
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Re: Hobbit Movie and Copyrights

[ Edited ]
I moved this topic over to an OT thread (OT: Protection of Rights/Control/Fair Use: ) so we can save this thread for discussions about the upcoming Hobbit film.



lorien wrote:
You are absolutely right Jesse. The Rowling/Vander Ark case is very significant and I wondered why they do not seem interested in the Harry Potter group. Probably because it has little directly to do with Harry Potter but does have deep significance as far what an other writer can write about a book. And this along with the Tolkien suit has more to do with the power and control of publishers and other big money interests. The "little" people are irrelevant. Interestingly enough this case also centers around Warner Bros.

http://www.harvardindependent.com/node/244

If some people were interested, we could set up an OT thread.



JesseBC wrote:
The Tolkien vs. New Line case really doesn't lend itself well to anything more than pub chat.

Opinions as to who's right or wrong in that situation are largely irrelevant. It's just a contract dispute and that's likely how the courts will settle it (if the parties don't settle out of court on their own).

While it's not as on-topic to this forum, if people really want to discuss higher principles, the Rowling vs. Vander Ark case is much more well-suited to that.

The parties don't have a contractual relationship and the dispute is based much more on principle.

Neither side is showing any sign of backing down and the original court's decision will probably be appealed no matter who it favors.

But the decision could have an enormous impact on what's considered fair use and what writers will be allowed to do in critical or scholarly interpretations, let alone adaptations, of original material.

(The irony in that case being how much of Harry Potter was stitched together from references to other original material in the first place.)





Message Edited by lorien on 04-24-2008 07:09 PM
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oldBPLstackdenizen
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Re: Hobbit Movie and Copyrights

Good Afternoon lorien ( and All ) ---
 
Before I just now read these latest posts, I was planning to write in and say something like:
 
[    ...It seems like we have all been going off down a side avenue in the discussion here, as this Thread started off talking about the forthcoming "Hobbit" movies - and it's starting to look more and more like this contract dispute is ultimately not going to have that much bearing on whether the movies get made or not.
It sounds like it might be time for yet another Thread: Something along the lines of "Legal Ramifications of Creative Endeavors and etcetera". However, as far as directly relating more to things Tolkienish, there was the attempt by Warner Brothers ( starting back in 2004, apparently ) to pretty much "own" the "rights" to the term "The Shire" - ( which opens up another can of worms ) - I'm assuming that Warner Bros. lost out on their bid to "claim this domain" - but all I have been able to find so far is the issue as it brought up back in 2004...anyway, all these legal issues give me a small headache - I myself would rather just be discussing the books themselves...    ]
 
Ardo Whortleberry
Tolkien Reader
"Middle-earth Is A State Of Mind"
^^^^^^^ ^^^ ^^^^^^^^^

Ardo Whortleberry
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lorien
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Re: Hobbit Movie



TiggerBear wrote:
The man himself, Guillermo del Toro, who may or may not be directing ‘The Hobbit’, has posted a very curious comment on our own message boards. Del Toro has mentioned recently at a New York convention that an announcement is imminent…decipher what you will from his post!
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
(shudder)
please, oh please don't let them hand it over to Del Toro.




Sorry Tiggerbear, it is official!

http://www.latimes.com/entertainment/news/la-et-hobbitt25apr25,1,6111273.story
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TiggerBear
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Re: Hobbit Movie

(sigh) my only hope is that if he ruins it, the raving fans will hang him.
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oldBPLstackdenizen
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Re: Hobbit Movie

Well ( at least according to that LA Times story ) Del Toro is held in a high estimation of his abilities by P.J. & Fran Walsh - and the New Line Production team is still going to be involved in the whole process ( and the filming is still to be done in New Zealand ) - so, these are hopeful signs. From what I understand, up until LOTR, Mr. Jackson had not exactly directed any great classic gems of cinematic artistry, either - although I don't know if any of those had the same kind of dark gruesomeness attached to them ( that is reportedly associated with the films thus far made by Del Toro ) - I don't know about hanging, however, if things get mangled too badly. Perhaps he simply could be offered to Smaug, instead, although I understand Smaug's tastes run more in the way of fair young maidens.                                  Ardo...
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Ardo Whortleberry
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oldBPLstackdenizen
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Re: Hobbit Movie

Although using New Zealand for the locations/backdrop for the LOTR movies worked out very well, I sometimes think there are times when locations in England, Scotland, Ireland or Wales might have worked well, as well.
( this is not a complaint - just a musing on my part ) ---
 We've been watching some epsodes of "Monarch Of The Glen" the last few nights - a program which is often filmed out-of-doors in the Scottish Highlands - and there are many scenes ( especially when off in the woods ) where it all looks very Shire-like ( or otherwise Middle-earthian ) to me. Possibly, some day these kind of locations will be used in versions of [ H ] or LOTR to come. ---
Actually, I used to fantasize about how environs in my own locale could be used in a LOTR movie - but ( by necessity ) with all the detritis of civilization from the last couple of centuries removed, via the magic of computer effects. That is a "system" that can be used just about anywhere, in any locale, to produce the desired effect, but that also does show the advantage of filming in a place like New Zealand - where it might be a bit easier to get away from all those "built-up areas" to begin with, and there is less stuff that might have to be "erased" from the scenery. ---
In the case of my particular locale, the trees would have mostly have to remain, even if all the buildings were "erased" - as two hundred years ago, the hills and glens here were much more "barren" ( as far as there being a lot of trees around ) than they are today - with the exception of some Oak trees, and the forest of very old, very tall Redwood trees at the crest of the hills. The Sierra Nevada seems like it would made a good location for the mountain scenes, as well - and perhaps that it will be used someday, who knows?  Ardo  
"Middle-earth Is A State Of Mind"
^^^^^^^ ^^^ ^^^^^^^^^

Ardo Whortleberry
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lorien
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Re: Hobbit Movie

Ardo wrote:
Although using New Zealand for the locations/backdrop for the LOTR movies worked out very well, I sometimes think there are times when locations in England, Scotland, Ireland or Wales might have worked well, as well.
-------------------------------------------

You are probably right. The sunlight would have had a different feel to it. But I don't think there would have been a place on the British Isles to build the set they created for The Shire. This project is part of the "Making of the Movie" extras on the extended DVD. They needed acres and acres of unused land. Then they actually came in and totally reconstructed The Shire with hobbit holes, grass, plants, trees, flowers, a lake, etc. It was a major construction effort and took a full year to complete.

In the extras you will find that they went to great effort to make everything as authentic and truly "finished" as possible. To tell you the truth, in the few minutes and often few seconds of film you actually see of these things, it is impossible to appreciate these details when watching the movies even when you do know about them. But still they went to a tremendous amount of expense and effort to do them. I think we will have more to comment on when we start the Fellowship of the Ring movie discussion next week.
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