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May 08, 2001 - May 15, 2001

Friday, May 11, 2001

E! Covers Cannes - Xoanon @ 19:36 EST
From: Ryan

Thought that I would mention that E! News Daily will be showing a segment on LOTR at Cannes on Monday's show. They say that they will be "inside." I assume that this means that they will be at the thing at the castle. I don't think that they will show footage, but anything is possible!!

CANNES: aftonbladet goes CANNES - Xoanon @ 19:34 EST
From: Alexander

Here is a pic from the swedish paper aftonbladet. It was attached to the article about Cannes.

CANNES: Teletext goes CANNES - Xoanon @ 19:26 EST
Everybody's Tolkien about it

Twenty-five minutes from the first of the long-awaited Lord Of The Rings movie trilogy is being screened at the Cannes Film Festival.

The excerpts show "the scope, drama, action and humour of the film", says New Line Cinema boss Rolf Mittweg. [More]

The Canal+ Interview with PJ. - Tehanu @ 17:58 EST
Fantastic work here by Ringer spy Arathorn II, who translated the interview with Peter Jackson that aired on France's Canal + which will be available on their website tomorrow, but meanwhile here is what was said.

"The interview begins with a short presentation of movies made by PJ: Braindead, Heavenly Creatures, Forgotten Silver... Then the interview begins (PJ being probably a bit stressed, or amazed by the reaction, if it's not just simple jetlag).

I(sabelle): We're very glad to introduce to you Peter Jackson, director from New Zealand. Good evening. It's a great honor to meet you.

PJ: Hi.

I: It's true that, with some others on the set, we're overjoyed because you're a big legend for some of us. True, now you don't sound very familiar to the general public, but this shouldn't last for long, since that, thanks to you, we'll discover at the end of the year the Lord of the Rings trilogy. The first episode will be released in December 2001, in a few months.

P(hilippe): Then it'll be in 2002 and 2003.

I: We had the pleasure to discover some 20 minutes of it. Given the feeling of this afternoon's screening, if I tell you now that to receive you is a bit like receiving George Lucas in 1977 just before Star Wars release, I imagine you'll be delighted by the comparison?

PJ: Oh yeah, it's great to be back at Cannes, you know, for me. One of the outstanding events of my life was to come here with my first movie, Bad Taste, some 13 years ago. And what's pretty weird is that, as you pointed to, for the LOTR screening the reaction was a bit like the one for the Bad Taste screening 13 years ago. So it's good to be back in the same theatre.

P: So you've made Meet the Feebles, one of the most deliciously disgusting movies I ever saw, Bad Taste you showed here in 1988, and now here's the LOTR trailer, after which you'll tell us 2 or 3 things to understand Tolkien's universe...."

[Theatre teaser - dubbed in French, with an awful Galadriel (voice) I definitely hope they'll change for the real stuff.]
Back to studio, short chat with the other guest, back to PJ.

I: LOTR, before it was a movie, was a big literature phenomenon...

P: It's a bit less read than the Bible, but just a little bit less.

I: Give us 2 or 3 keys to understand what it is about?

PJ: Well, the story of the Lord of the Rings. First, it's 3 books. And I think one of the reasons why it took 45 years before someone made a movie of it is because many people wanted to but didn't know how to make 1 movie from 3 books; it's practically impossible. And we had the luck of making 3 different movies, so we shot the 3 books from beginning til the end, 274 days of shooting without any stop. So it's 3 movies we'll release one after the other.
It's a fantasy mystical movie.
The characters, the hobbits, are appr. 1.5 m high [?? wrong conversion of 3'6" ??], and they come into possession of an incredibly dangerous Ring, that it has an enormous evil power. And there's just one place where it can be destroyed, that is some 2'500-3'000 km from there. And they have to make this travel through this very dangerous world.
The Fellowship of the Ring is a group of people that tries to help the Hobbits to make this travel.
So, it's an epic movie.

I: You make my mouth water.
P: So there was the screening this morning, which was very popular. We gathered not-even-contrasted opinions.

Follow various comments by various French and foreign people that attended the screening:
- It's hard to find words; it's exceptional, it's wonderful, there are incredible SFX!
- It's an incredible adventure!
- It's absolutely fantastic!
- Audacious!
- It's wonderful!
- It's powerful, it's impressive, it shows great promises.
- It's wonderful, it's magic, it's poetic, it's...
- I can't wait to see the rest!
- It's extraordinary!
- It's the best thing I've seen since a long time.
- There's in my opinion one of the biggest babe I ever saw, Viggo Mortensen.
- It's intense, very intense.
- I think that Steven Spielberg and George Lucas will be very disappointed they didn't make that movie.

Back to interview:

I: That's it, an eagerly awaited movie, with as much marketing as movie-making. Is there a big pressure on your shoulders, Peter Jackson?

PJ: Well, it's fantastic to have such a reaction, frankly. You know, the movie release is only in 6 months, we've worked for 2 years on it. So it's the very first time anyone saw anything from this movie [Complete scene with finished SFX, I assume]. And after such a work from everyone at the set, it's fantastic to have a feedback and to see that people like it. It's a great incentive because I have to go back to NZ on Monday and to work again on edition, so to be here and to have such a reaction is really something that gives me energy to go back to New Zealand and go on with my work.

P: See you all at the end of this year, then in 2002 and 2003. There was the epic shooting of Apocalypse Now, now there's the epic shooting of LOTR. But you didn't become crazy, unlike Coppola; though all is not as it appears.
Thank you very much to have come to the studio.

PJ: Thank you.

The Footage! Friday at Cannes - Calisuri @ 17:41 EST

*** NOTE: As you can imagine, the last few days have been quite hectic! Here is the first report and look for another tomorrow. Eventhough we are not allowed to bring cameras to the official events, I do have some pictures of Cannes and Nice to share. Expect them tomorrow. . ****

Want to jump to the footage review without reading my dribble? Click here.

Friday May 11th, 2001 - First Report

I woke up 3 times in the middle of the night just to be sure I would not miss my train. After all, there was no way in heck I was going to miss the Lord of the Rings press footage and a chance to talk with the cast members. Each time, I actually insisted it was 6am while staring at a clock that said otherwise. Finally, thanks to a wonderful wake-up call from Leo and Maurice (lordoftherings.nl) I jumped in the shower, checked my email, and Amy (my girlfriend), and I booked out the door to catch the express train. Apparently, it was really express, because we missed it. After reaching Cannes, and meeting up with Leo and Maurice (now nicknamed 'the Giants'), we decided to get a head start on the day and get some breakfast before the New LIne office opened for business at 9. While waiting for the New Line office to open, and right in the middle of a serious call, I was shat upon by one of Cannes's glamorous pigeons. The shatting was not as traumatic as trying to get one of the street vendors to lend me some napkins. After being rejected I finally shelled out the 2 franks to open one of the public rest rooms and grab some toilet paper.

But anyway...back to Lord of the Rings...

I arrive at the New Line press office to claim my badge and bag of cool stuff. So whats in the bag? Well, first off, there is a REALLY unique map of New Zealand. One side of the map is designed in a Tolkien style with markers denoting where certain scenes were filmed. The other showcases New Zealand's diverse landscape, and lists the famous movies that have been filmed in this beautiful conuntry. Next in the bag is a well designed book that showcases the entire movie with full page images and a review of the whole project. Later on, I was lucky enough to have Ian Mckellen sign mine! A page of slides, a movie synopsis, and some other random, not too critical, things round out the pack. The synopsis is absolutely amazing. While I can't just send out the text of it, I can say that the changes in the story are very minimal. The film will flow wonderfully. On a scale of 1 to 10, this adaptation is at least a 9. (The Only reason I don't give it a 10 is because of the absence of Bombadil.)

So back to the Cinema Olympia. I have never been in a theater that had leather lounge chairs as its main seating. Those huge US theater chains should consider this extraordinary luxury for us normal folk. Even so, the theater was gorgeous. Perfect to experience our first look at LOTR on screen. Also, Peter Jackson had a sound system flown in from Paris just for this screening.

It's at this point (10 minutes before the film begins) that I met Harry from AintitCool and Joram from Ringbearer. Both were just as excited about these films as I am. Harry was particularly interested in hearing some of Howard Shore's score before the day had ended. By the end, he got his wish.

And so it begins...

Rob Shea, a big wig at New Line, took a few moments to remind the audience that the footage was not finished and not representative of the complete movie. To quote him, "THIS IS NOT A MOVIE." I guess the traditional media usually take these screenings and review them as if they were the movie. So the point was made, and Mr. Shea then introduced, the man, the myth, the legend...

Peter Jackson!

(rounding applause)

PJ, like Shea, emphasised that the footage was in its early stages, but very close to done. He described the three parts to the footage and mentioned that the music for the second clip (The Mines of Moria) was in fact that of Howard's Shore.

The first clip was about 6 to 7 minutes long and emphasised the story, the plot, and the characters of Fellowship of the Ring. The major highlight of this clip was the scene with Gandalf visiting Bilbo before his 111th birthday. The use of forced perspective, and human to hobbit scale was absolutely perfect. Any doubts that this process would not work should be laid to rest now. It is seamless and completely believable. To quote Maurice, sitting next to me, "It was just amazing!" More details on this clip to come in the future.

The second clip was simply mind-blowing. 14 minutes of the Mines of Moria scene! I can safely say, Lord of the Rings will surpass mine, and your expectations after seeing this footage. The character interaction, fight sequence, and CG (even in its unfinished state) worked so well. I honestly believed that I was in the Mines of Moria being hunted by hundreds of orcs, a cave troll, and the balrog. Yes, I said the Balrog. I HAVE SEEN THE BALROG! But anyway, this clip is absolutely amazing. With Aragorn and Legolas wielding bows, and Gimli raging with Dwarfish anger, the orcs charging Balin's tomb didn't have a chance... until the Cave Troll showed up. Talk about identifying with the characters in peril. Peter Jackson masterfully edits this scene to bring you into the excitement. You will not be disappointed. But what about the score Calisuri? Tell us about the score!!! Well, the music definitely fit with the images and mood on screen. As it turns out, the music from this scene was deliberately made to be 'dwarfish.' Unfortunately, I didn't get a chance to listen for really fine details, but I do know that Harry was listening for that. I'm sure he will write in detail about it in the future. The only possible negative was a quick couple of seconds that sounded like the beginning of the 'Hercules' theme. I'll try to find the clip online in a few days to explain more.

The last section of the footage was a montage of clips from 'The Two Towers' and 'Return of the King.' Basically, we had a lot of quick shots of armies, the remaining characters, and some absolutely beautiful landscapes. We saw Frodo talking to Faramir about the Ring; David Wenham is perfect for this role. Leo, Maurice and I actually mistook him to be Sean Bean as Boromir! There are also a few shots of Eowyn, and a grizzly shot of Theoden, in a very old and degenerated state (almost to the point of diseased looking). At one moment, in the montage, I think we actually saw Wormtongue being tossed out of Edoras down some stairs. There was so much in this footage that it is nearly impossible to relate it all. When I get back in the States, I will try. Everything ended with a quick glimpse of Frodo in Mount Doom.

And that was it. The audience, made up of mostly hardened media, burst out in applause. Everyone was psyched. Not a nay-sayer in the bunch. If there is any proof that these films will rock the world, just look at how the print press relay their experience. I'm sure we'll see a lot of positive responses and down-right excitement in the near future.

With the screening over, we boarded a bus and headed to the Chateau de Casdelleras to the interviews. At the time of our arrival, they had lots of LOTR props and scenes under construction. I've just seen a hobbit hole in real life, and I don't think I'll forget it!

Tomorrow look for our reports from the interview circuit with Dominic Monaghan, Sean Astin, Elijah Wood, Billy Boyd, Orlando Bloom, Liv Tyler, Viggo Mortensen, Sean Bean, Ian McKellen, Christopher Lee and John Rhys-Davies.

Then on Sunday, the Party.


CANNES: The Toronto Star - Xoanon @ 13:47 EST
HOBBIT FORMING: The hottest movie here yesterday drew a capacity crowd that needed a secret location and two sets of I.D. to get in - and all we saw was 25 minutes of it. But when you're talking The Lord Of The Rings, the biggest thing since Star Wars, it's to be expected. [More]

CANNES: Boston Herald goes CANNES - Xoanon @ 13:44 EST
`Rings' preview is the Lord of the Cannes Film Festival

by Stephen Schaefer

The scene was a theater not far from the Grand Palais at the Cannes Film Festival, but the occasion was a trip to Middle Earth.

New Line Pictures yesterday gave a select group of international entertainment journalists a 24-minute preview of its epic ``Lord of the Rings'' trilogy. [More]

CANNES: the beeb goes CANNES - Xoanon @ 13:43 EST
From: BBC News

Cannes preview for Rings

A select band of film industry members and journalists have been given a 20-minute preview of the first Lord of the Rings movie at a chateau outside Cannes. [More]

CANNES: France's 'Canal +' goes LOTR - Xoanon @ 13:38 EST
Ringer Spy Orgship sends along word what the french television site Canal + will be showing some footage from CANNES (not LOTR footage, just from out and about in Cannes) on their show, as well as online! Check out the link, and look for that to happen later this evening. [More]

We've also got word of a possible live chat on the site! Peter Jackson involved! More to come!

CANNES: French Primere Covers the Screener - Xoanon @ 12:18 EST

Cannes, May 10, 2001, 5.00 pm: The Olympia Theater screening room is almost full with journalists from all over the world. Before Sunday’s big party, the huge worldwide publicity campaign is just starting here. [More]

CANNES: The Daily Telegraph - Xoanon @ 11:08 EST
The Daily Telegraph (via lotr.nl) has a great article covering CANNES, with some really great photos!!

CANNES: 26 Minutes of Footage Screened! - Xoanon @ 10:57 EST
Calisuri called me having just seen the footage from LOTR. The 90% complete mines of moria scene, as well as some other scenes from the the other two films.

Cali tels me the scenes look wonderful! The cgi was partially done in some places, yet where it was complete it was seamless and really amazing.

'we have nothing to worry about' he goes on to say.

'They showed all the characters, they look amazing, the scope of these films look extreemly huge, and really reall really amazing'

More details coming from the man himself, soon!

TORN at Cannes...it now begins, with photos!!!! - Xoanon @ 10:56 EST
TORN Staffer Leo apparently runs faster than Calisuri and managed to snap these FIRST EXCLUSIVE CANNES photos for us, with more to come, from both Leo and Calisuri! This is just the beginning!!

First up we have the LOTR Press Junkett Pass...me wantsssss one!!

Secondly, we have the Official LOTR Press Book, oh yes, this is something that I MUST have in my collection!! Take a gander at those photos!!!

Remember to visit our FULL CANNES 2001 Coverage page!

Be sure to check out Leo's real home, lordoftherings.nl

Tuesday, May 08, 2001

TORn Goes to Cannes - Calisuri @ 23:30 EST
TheOneRing.net at Cannes! We've had the great honor of being invited to the biggest film festival in the world!

New Line Cinema asked us to tag along as they roll out the red carpet and reveal the 'Lord of the Rings' to the entire world.

Our adventure begins this Wednesday, when Calisuri embarks on an adventure of such grand scale and excitement that he will surely get lynched by the rest of us when he gets back!

Calisuri will be staying just outside of the famous city of Cannes, near the glamour of the festival, but just close enough to Middle-earth to make sure he can spot the occasional elf or dwarf!

The 4 day stint will comprise of meeting the cast of LOTR, including Ian McKellen, Elijah Wood, Sean Astin, Orlando Bloom, Christopher Lee, Liv Tyler and more! We will be bringing you exclusive interviews with each of the cast members. Calisuri will also be meeting with Peter Jackson, Frances Walsh, and the rest of the LOTR team!

A lavish party will be held at the Castle 'Le Cool' just outside Cannes, where major set pieces have been flown in to re-create scenes from LOTR! Calisuri will be bringing us day-by-day coverage of the entire event!

In conjunction with the Official LOTR Website, we will be providing exclusive coverage of the event, including pictures, reports and interviews!

Stay tuned in the next few weeks for all the Cannes coverage you can handle, you'll be speaking french by the time you're done reading what we've got to show you!

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