Lord of the Rings is a fictional concept born of the mind of John Ronald Reuel Tolkien (1892-1973) who was a major scholar and Professor of the English language, specialising in Old and Middle English at Oxford University, Great Britain.
Tolkein's first published work to involve the characters of Middle Earth was The Hobbit (1937) it was almost twenty years later that The Lord of the Rings Trilogy was released (1954-1955). Since the books release the story has become a favorite read of young people all over the world. A few silver screen adaptations have happened over the years but all seemed to fail in visually displaying the vastness of Middle Earth. Then came the quite recent, Peter Jackson directed, version (split as the books into three movies) which will surely go down in history as the definitive film version of the story.
At the core of The Lord of the Rings are the cultures that make up Middle-earth: Hobbits, Dwarves, Humans, Elves, Wizards, Trolls, Ents, Orcs, Ringwraiths and Uruk-Hai.
The three books are: Lord of the Rings: Fellowship of the Ring, Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers, Lord of the Rings Return of the King
The screen icon has just released his third E.P of metal covers which includes a version of Frank Sinatra's 'My Way'
He’s been the evil wizard Saruman in one of the biggest grossing blockbuster franchises of all time. He’s played Dracula on almost a dozen occasions, a bond villain and a Sith Lord and he has been knighted by the Queen for his commitment to acting. He’s accepted a BAFTA Fellowship Award for over sixty years of service to the film industry, as well as a lifetime achievement award from the British Film Institute. Yet Sir Christopher Lee, now 92, and still maintaining a commendable acting repertoire, has just begun a career as a heavy metal vocalist. That’s right, the legendary actor and go-to Hollywood villain also possesses a serious set of pipes, and his ominous baritone has found a natural home within the most melodramatic of genres.
Christopher Lee already has three E.P's and an album under his belt
To celebrate his 92nd birthday, Lee has recently released an E.P of covers entitled Metal Night, which is now available to purchase. The record will be his third covers E.P, after two Christmas-themed E.P’s were released in 2012 and 2013 respectively. Lee also received the accolade of the oldest living musician to enter the music charts as his song ‘Jingle Hell’ reached 18th in the Billboard Hot 100 chart. His current release features covers of two tracks from the Don Quixote smash-hit Broadway musical Man La Mancha.
Continue reading: Everything You Need To Know About Christopher Lee's Metal Covers Album
Viggo Mortensen on Lord of the Rings. Peter Jackson, look away now.
Viggo Mortensen, the actor best known for playing Aragorn in the Lord Of The Rings movies, says the second and third films in the franchise were "sloppy" movies and would have been straight-to-video had the first instalment not received critical acclaim. Mortensen doesn't mince his words about the trilogy in a new interview with The Telegraph, claiming that director Peter Jackson was practically "finished" before the first movie got a good reception at Cannes.
Viggo Mortensen at the premiere of 'The Two Faces of January'
"Anybody who says they knew it [Lord of the Rings] was going to be the success it was, I don't think it's really true," he said.
A lot of loose ends need tying up in this final part of the trilogy.
We’re two films, five hours and one cliffhanger into The Hobbit film series and final installment, There And Back Again, is due out in December. This means we’re in for about eight months of speculation. The trailer isn’t even out yet, but looking back on the source material, there are a few predictions to be made about the final film. We'd put a spoiler warning here, but you know...the book has been out for almost 90 years, just saying.
This one might be less about Bilbo and more about... well, everyone else.
3. The Battle of the Five Armies. At this point in the franchise, we are yet to see Thorin get consumed by greed, which is one of the main plot points in The Hobbit. At one point, the King Under the Mountain should hole up with his gold and refuse to pay any compensation to the people of Laketown (who at this point are about to have their town torched by Smaug) or to the Wood Elves. The two armies are on their way to lay siege to the mountain, when they discover that there is an orc and warg army on the way too. Basically the culmination of the entire series.
Continue reading: Three Major Predictions For 'The Hobbit There And Back Again'
JRR Tolkien's translation of Beowulf is finally seeing the light of day - or the shelves of Waterstones.
JRR Tolkien's translation of the epic Beowulf is to be published for the first time almost 90 years after its completion. Beowulf: A Translation and Commentary will be published in May, giving Tolkien fans an extraordinary insight into the book that helped inspire The Lord Of The Rings and The Hobbit.
Martin Freeman in The Hobbit: There and Back Again
The book, to be published in the UK by HarperCollins, has been edited by Tolkien's son Christopher Tolkien, who said the attention to detail gives rise to "a sense of immediacy and clarity of his vision."
Continue reading: 88 Years Later, JRR Tolkien's 'Beowulf' Is To Hit Bookshelves
Fancy buying Erebor? Got $6 billion?
Erebor, The Lonely Mountain where Smaug the Dragon lives in The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug, would cost around $6 billion to buy, if it was real, according to a new housing report. US real estate experts Movoto have put together some details of the "multilevel property" to coincide with the release of The Desolation of Smaug - based on JRR Tolkien's Hobbit book. The company has previously estimated the price of Hogwarts, Wayne Manor and Barbie's dream house in Malibu.
Martin Freeman as Bilbo Baggins in 'The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug'
On the basis that Erebor includes an entire underground city and working on the assumption that Middle Earth mirrors Europe, Movoto has valued Smaug's luxury property at $6 billion. It estimates that the Lonely Mountain is slightly north of Kirov in Russia and is probably around 44 square miles.
Continue reading: The Hobbit: Smaug's Home Erebor Would Cost $6 Billion to Buy
Time to say goodbye for these fantasy stalwarts
As filming for The Hobbit trilogy comes to an end, the franchise says goodbye to some of its most loved characters. The time has come for Legolas and Gandalf to put down their bow and staff respectively, as the actors that portray them leave behind a loved series.
Here's McKellen enjoying a smoke and some lines
Expected to feature heavily, as he did in The Lord Of The Rings, Orlando Bloom’s Legolas will enjoy his last outings in The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug, which is expected to hit cinemas this December, and the last film The Hobbit: There and Back Again.
'The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug' appears to be a more engaging movie than 'An Unexpected Journey.'
The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug Trailer is finally here, and with it, the first look at Benedict Cumberbatch's big scaly fire breathing dragon. The British actor voices Smaug in the second of Peter Jackson's trilogy, which appears for a couple of seconds at the end of the new trailer - however, we still haven't heard the beast's voice and really hope he utters something in the actual movie, or it could be a miserable pay-packet for our Benedict.
Martin Freeman as the Hobbit Bilbo Baggins in The Hobbit: The Desolation Of Smaug
Mainly, it's the old characters that have been called upon to hype the latest film, with the dwarves playing a prominent role in the trailer and Bilbo looking a bit bewildered as usual. However, we are treated to the return of Orlando Bloom's Legolas - who literally slides into the trilogy - and Luke Evans' Bard the Bowman. The latter had a minor role in the previous film though is believed to be crucial to The Desolation of Smaug and There And Back Again. According to Yahoo Moves, the Bowman is tasked with stopping the terrifying dragon after warning the dwarves, "If you awaken that beast you will destroy us all."
Peter Jackson films the cast's reaction to a YouTube fan video
Three Elves are watching a YouTube video. This is not, contrary to how it might appear, the start of a bad joke but is actual video footage posted by Peter Jackson on his Facebook page. The cast and crew of The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug are amused by fan reactions to the trailer released on Tuesday. Their mirth results from watching two girls, Alex and Kellie or Fili and Kili (as they've named themselves on YouTube), view the film trailer for the first time. The three elves in question are Orlando Bloom, Evangeline Lilly and Lee Pace. Lilly said the fan's reaction was 'more intense than the trailer'.
Other fans have commented on the trailer - on Jackson's Facebook page - saying it is 'awesome'; that they 'can't wait' and that the director is 'the greatest'. Whilst the majority of fan comments are positive, there are a few who have complained (via Facebook and Twitter) that the special effects are poor. Criticism has particularly directed at Smaug who is described as 'disappointing'.
18th century ring believed to have curse attached to it
The ring that might well have inspired JRR Tolkien to write The Lord Of The Rings book has been put up in an exhibition at The Vyne in Hampshire, owned by the National Trust.
According to The Guardian, the ring was probably found in 1785 by a farmer ploughing a few miles away from The Vyne in Silchester. A town which flourished before the Roman invasion, was abandoned by the 7th century, it was never reoccupied. It bares semblance to the fictional ring in Tolkien’s books and also the Peter Jackson films, large and gold and featuring a Latin inscription reading: "Senicianus live well in God".
Mysteriously, at Lydney in Gloucestershire, a Roman site known locally as the Dwarf's Hill, a tablet with an inscribed curse was found, which is believed to be related to the ring. On it, a Roman called Silvianus apparently informs the god Nodens that his ring has been stolen. He knows the villain responsible, and he wants the god to sort them out: "Among those who bear the name of Senicianus to none grant health until he bring back the ring to the temple of Nodens." Tolkien was undoubtedly aware of the story of the ring and the curse; he was a professor of Anglo-Saxon at the University of Oxford and had been researching it. This took place before he found fame with the publication of The Hobbit in 1937, and the first Lord Of The Rings book in 1954.
Continue reading: The 'Real' Lord Of The Rings Ring Goes On Exhibition
Today would have been the 121st birthday for legendary novelist J.R.R Tolkien. With the latest adaptation of his fantasy epics, The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, still in the minds of many, an old interview with The BBC reminds us of the inspiration for the timeless classic.
"[I remember] the actual flashpoint," Tolkien told the BBC in March 1968 about his idea for The Hobbit. "I can still see the corner in my house in 20 Northmoor Road where it happened. I'd got an enormous pile of exam papers there and was marking school examinations in the summer time, which was very laborious, and unfortunately also boring. I remember picking up a paper and nearly gave it an extra mark, or extra five marks actually, because one page on this particular paper was left blank. Glorious! Nothing to read. So I scribbled on it, I can't think why, 'In a hole in the ground there lived a hobbit'."
Tolkien wrote The Hobbit and The Lord Of The Rings while living in Oxford, but it's hard to imagine he envisaged what cultural icons they would become, as Peter Jackson continues to reinvent his masterpieces into big-screen blockbusters. Work on the second Hobbit film, The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug, is in post production and set for a 2013 release. There and Back Again - the third and final film - is due for a 2014 release.
Hobbiton, Lord Of The Rings and New Zealand - Hobbiton middle earth village film set in Matamata, New Zealand - 28.11.12 Sunday 28th August 2011 Featuring: Hobbiton Village Where: Matamata, New Zeland
Martin Freeman, Hobbit Premiere, Embassy, Wellington and New Zealand - Martin Freeman attends the Hobbit Premiere at the Embassy theatre, Wellington, New Zealand - 28.11.12 Wednesday 28th November 2012 Featuring: Martin Freeman Where: Wellington, New Zealand
James Cameron, Suzy Amis, Hobbit Premiere, Embassy, Wellington and New Zealand - James Cameron and wife, Suzy Amis attends the Hobbit Premiere at the Embassy theatre, Wellington, New Zealand - 28.11.12 Wednesday 28th November 2012 Featuring: James Camerson, Suzy Amis Where: Wellington, New Zealand
Elijah Wood and Lord Of The Rings - Elijah Wood attends the Hobbit Premiere at the Embassy theatre, Wellington, New Zealand - 28.11.12 Wednesday 28th November 2012 Featuring: Elijah Wood Where: Wellington, New Zealand