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February 19, 2004 - February 25, 2004

2-25-04 Latest News

EA Games' new title to premiere at Return of the One Party
maegwen @ 5:48 pm EST

EA Games' worldwide premiere for The Lord of the Rings(tm), The Battle for Middle-earth(tm) PC game trailer.

This Sunday will be a big day for all the PC gamers out there. The lucky fans who will be attending the Return of the One Party on Oscar Sunday are in for an extra treat. EA Games will be having their worldwide premier for a 2-minute, 100% gameplay trailer for their upcoming The Lord of the Rings(tm), The Battle for Middle-earth(tm) PC game. Executive Producer Mark Skaggs will be on hand to present the trailer.

Immerse yourself in the fully interactive 3D world of Middle-earth with The Lord of the Rings(tm), The Battle for Middle-earth(tm), an all new strategy game from the award-winning team responsible for Command &Conquer(tm) Generals. Control the heroes and armies of Middle-earth in the epic battles based on all three films of The Lord of the Rings(tm) trilogy. Will you lead the fellowship in its quest to save Middle-earth, or unleash the armies of darkness in an attempt to conquer it? The fate of Middle-earth is in your hands.

The video will be covered live on TORN's live webcast of the Return of the One Party event and everyone in attendance will actually get to take home the exclusive game trailer DVD.

For more information about The Lord of the Rings(tm), The Battle for Middle-earth(tm), visit www.lordoftherings.ea.com

Tyler, McKellen Tapped to Present at Oscars
weetanya @ 2:44 pm EST

From: "Academy Publicity Department"
February 25, 2004

Additional Presenters Named to Sunday's Oscar(R)

Beverly Hills, CA -Adrien Brody, Pierce Brosnan,
Scarlett Johansson, Ian McKellan [sic], Jada Pinkett
Smith, Ben Stiller, Liv Tyler and Owen Wilson will
be presenters at the 76th Academy Awards(R) on
Sunday, producer Joe Roth revealed today.

Brody took home the Best Actor Oscar at the 75th
Anniversary Academy Awards for his role in "The
Pianist," his first nomination for an Academy Award.
He will be seen next in "The Village" and currently
is filming "The Jacket."

This will be Pierce Brosnan's third appearance as a
presenter on the Oscar telecast. His film credits
include "Die Another Day," "The World is Not
Enough," "The Thomas Crown Affair," "Tomorrow Never
Dies," "Goldeneye" and "Mrs. Doubtfire."

Scarlett Johansson will make her first Oscar show
appearance as a presenter. She currently can be
seen in "Girl with a Pearl Earring" and "Lost in

Ian McKellen was nominated in 1998 for his leading
role in "Gods and Monsters" and for his supporting
role as Gandolf in 2001's "The Lord of the Rings:
The Fellowship of the Ring." He currently can be
seen in "The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the
King," followed later this year by "Asylum" and

Actress Jada Pinkett Smith, who will make her first
appearance as an Oscar show presenter, recently was
seen in "The Matrix Revolutions" and "The Matrix
Reloaded" and will be seen next in "Collateral."

Actor-director-producer Ben Stiller's appearance on
the show will be his third as an Oscar presenter.
He currently can be seen in "Along Came Polly" and
will be seen next in "Starsky and Hutch."

Actress Liv Tyler, who is making her second Oscar
show appearance, can be seen in "Lord of the Rings:
The Return of the King" and will be seen next in
"Jersey Girl" with Ben Affleck.

Actor-writer Owen Wilson has just wrapped "The Life
Aquatic" and will be seen in "Starsky & Hutch" this
March. In 2001, he received an Oscar nomination
for co-writing the original screenplay for "The
Royal Tenenbaums." His acting credits include "The
Royal Tenenbaums," "Zoolander" and "Meet the

Academy Awards for outstanding film achievements of
2003 will be presented on Sunday, February 29, 2004,
at the Kodak Theatre at Hollywood & Highland(R) and
will be televised live by the ABC Television Network
beginning at 5 p.m. (PST) with a half-hour arrivals
segment. Information about the 76th Annual Academy
Awards can be accessed on line at oscar.com.

Downsizing Frodo: More responses
Tehanu @ 1:54 am EST

Juliet Waldron's essay "Downsizing Frodo" has produced more thoughtful responses from TORN readers. Tiel Jackson wrote: "I was reading the Juliet Waldron essay and some of the replies that you posted on the web, and it got me thinking. I'm not sure if I'm for or agin it, but-- it seems to me a lot of what's going on with the Frodo/Sam/Gollum storyline is that Jackson & Co. recast it as a romance.

"Before I go any further with that, I should say I don't believe that relationship was meant to be seen as being at all sexual-- I frankly think it's a sad comment on our society, that people aren't able to see love and affection without reading sex into it. Be that as it may. A romance in which the principal's devotion and unanimity never wavered would be... well... boring. That's pretty much how Frodo and Sam are in the book-- even though Frodo has these flashes of Ring-induced paranoia, they never last for more than a couple minutes.

"Instead, Jackson & Co. give us a classic love triangle, leading to jealousy, separation, betrayal, rescue and reconciliation. This is very much a standard adventure/romance novel formula. I think this may account for some of the movies' popularity with female moviegoers, which apparently has a lot of industry people scratching their heads-- it's the kind of story we're used to reading, once you get past the fact that the "lovers" are both guys, the dynamic is very familiar.

"The other thing that comes out of that is that Frodo's injury by Shelob and capture by the Orcs appear as direct consequences of-- and maybe punishment for-- his having trusted Gollum over Sam. In the book it seems like, if Sam had been first out of the tunnel, he'd have been stung instead of Frodo. There's no particular moral lesson there. Does that make Frodo a "stronger" or "weaker" character? I dunno.

"Clearly Jackson & Co. chose to put Frodo through some different and more visible set of trials than what he's described as going through in the book. (That slow wasting of the will would be very difficult to portray in movie terms, I think.) Part of that is that Frodo gets his heart broken by Gollum. Like I said at the beginning, I'm not sure if I'm for or agin it, but I can see why they might have chosen to play it that way. I don't think it was a cheap decision, and in the end that's all you can really ask."

Melilot tended to confirm that the discussion raised by Juliet's essay is an important one:

"I found the essay by Juliet Waldron very interesting. I translated it into spanish and posted it in a local Tolkien forum and it has certainly caused a stormlike reaction! The funny thing is that most of the members in such forum didn't seem to be that much interested in Frodo until I posted that... odd. They are more into the discussion of, shall I say, "stronger" characters, and specially into elf warriors and the race of men. I'm one of the very few whose all time fave characters is actually Frodo, or any other hobbit for that matter, so I thought I was going to be quite ignored by posting that, but, boy was I wrong!.

"I must say that I partially agreed with some of Ms. Waldron's comments about Frodo (who coincidentally, is my favourite LoTR character, alongside with Faramir). It's been really very hard for me to cope with PJ's Frodo. It's all become a bit of a mess in my head, because, also coincidentally, I happen to really enjoy Elijah Wood as an actor, yet somehow I cannot seem to reconcile his Frodo with mine. I have watched the three films countless times. I read Tolkien 27 years ago for the first time and in the latter years I have become sort of a diehard "analyst" of his works.

"I very much agree than in this now "post PJ" era for Tolkien readers, the once famous "Frodo Lives!" has turned into "Frodo Failed!" and that is nothing short of shocking and worthy of analysis. I have encountered lots of "new" LoTR fans who seem to practically ignore Frodo's role and, more bitterly, Frodo's aura and particularities after watching the movies. I find this somewhat hard to cope with, I actually hardly ever thought that this beautiful, quiet, pious and insighftul character would be getting such a dismissive treatment, and for as much as I completely adore all three movies, I believe this new thread is closely related to the treatment Frodo was given in them."

Marlene B. found a new interpretation of the scene where Frodo appears to offer the Ring to the Ringwraith on the walls of Osgiliath:

"Both rebuttals are great and well circumstantiated. Now I have to „totally agree‰ with EVERYBODY (sigh!). Truth be told, the basic conflict is ˆas it always was- book vs. film. It cannot be solved. The media are too dissimilar cannot be compared and each one follows a different logic.

"But having read many versions of the Osgiliath scene I feel I might as well volunteer (inflict?) my own.

"Although Frodo is not quite himself at that point, due to the „call‰ of the Nazgul, I don't think he goes up that building completely against his will (note purposeful gait). I think his action (and intention) indicate the deep desperation and hopelessness of Frodo at this point in time. What we could consider his lowest point (he has finally realized how desperate the whole thing is but hasn't yet found in himself the bravery he will later display).

"You will notice the Nazgul is not expecting him up there. It arrives called in by the ring. Also significant is the fact that the only way the Nazgul could actually see Frodo clearly, would be for him to put the ring on. He actually wants the wraith to see him and quite simply kill him and put him out of his suffering. Of course, (as with on impulse‚ suicide attempts) the whole thing has not been thought over or planned ahead. He is just answering the wild desire (arguably half his, half infused by the wraiths) to "end it all."

Finally, Parmendiriel talks about the difference between Sam's more visible physical heroism, and Frodo's internal struggle which is harder to portray on film, in her weblog entry here. She links to Juliet's essay, in case you're wondering what everyone's talking about.

I don't know. That is the way I read it first time I saw it."

This is such an interesting topic. I'm away travelling for the next 2 weeks so the topic is regretfully closed as far as I'm concerned, however. Tehanu over and out.

Bruce Hopkins and Project Read in LA
Tehanu @ 1:18 am EST

Bruce Hopkins [Gamling the Old] is in LA for a few days prior to the Oscars. He wrote in about his involvement with Project Read:

"I decided I wanted to visit a school in LA ( did a similar thing for Air NZ here after the premier, and it went incredibly well).So on Friday 27th at 9.52am ( a specific time stipulated by the principal ! ) i am going to go to Tetzlaff Middle school for and hour to talk and answer questions, sign autographs and hand out gifts from AirNZ. There may be another school when I come back through LA at the end of March, or even on Monday 1st March before I leave to London.

"I don't know if you have heard of Project Read, but it is a brilliant initiative that came from the LOTR films. I came across it when emailing the NZ consul general in LA Darryl Dunne, here's what he sent to me about it:

"Our connection with LOTR and schools has been through Project Read, a school literacy program heavily backed by the LA County authorities. Kids aged 10 - 17, many from at risk situations (including probationers) were given donated copies of each book in the trilogy and the deal was if they read the book and wrote an essay on it, they got to see the film free before anyone else courtesy of New Line and AMC Theatres. In the first year, 1,000 kids saw the film, in 2002 it was 4,000 and in December last year 12,000 kids saw the film over three days in a multiplex cinema in LA. While engaging on the book/film side, the organisers found out about the NZ connection and as a result my office got involved together with other NZ interests here. We mounted exhibitions at the screenings. In 2002 Prime Minister Helen Clark met with a group of kids (including probationers) and principals/supervisors involved in Project Read, during a visit to LA. A school party visited NZ courtesy of Air NZ and Newmans in 2003 and met the PM and Peter Jackson. They included a student film maker who covered the whole visit. Arising from that visit we have been trying to establish an ongoing exchange between schools in LA (who are very keen on it and well set up) and New Zealand, but the NZ side has proven problematical.

"We and the LA organisers are aware of the forthcoming production of the Lion the Witch and the Wardrobe in NZ and keen to promote the literacy and awareness exchanges round the book/film to extend past LOTR - if we can get any interest from NZ!"

That's from NZ's Consul General in LA. From me, Tehanu, here in NZ, I'd like to suggest that any New Zealanders involved in the education sector who are reading this might like to consider how NZ schools could get involved.

2-24-04 Latest News

Howard Shore Montreal Concert Review
Xoanon @ 7:02 pm EST

Daniel "Frodo" writes:

Yesterday's concert of Howard Shore's Lord of the Rings Symphony was a resounding success and M. Shore was greeted with much applause prior to the performance. Despite a weak rendition of Gollum's Song and Into the West the concert was a wonderful experience of a lifetime. Of particular note was the Bridge of Khazad-dum, The Breaking of the Fellowship, The White Tree, and The End of All Things. The 200 musicians and chorists performance was exceptional. Also heart wrenching was the performance by Soprano Ying Huang. The crowd showed its appreciation with a standing ovation and 3 curtain calls and Howard Shore was presented with flowers.

The concert was recorded for later broadcast on the Canadian cable networks Bravo! and ARTV by Montreal director Pierre Siguin, without question one of the best in Canada. Rumours are that this recording will end up in the DVD boxed set of the trilogy to be released in 2005.

Bacchus and Orpheus Reports
Xoanon @ 6:55 pm EST

Neyuki writes: Sunday at seven was the start of the Orpheus ball. The parade didn't end up getting there until about 8:30 or 9:00, though. When Elijah's float came in, it was pretty obvious he was having a blast. He was grinning and throwing stuff. When the parade was about halfway over, he came walking down the parade isle and was giving people hugs before going up into the VIP stage area. When the parade was done, I saw a couple friends who said he had been talking to Dominic Monaghan and asking where he was.

When Dominic got there, my friends and I were the first ones he saw, and he gave us one of his smiles that I think anyone would die for. We all snuck up into the VIP area, which wasn't very hard, and got hugs and pictures. I also got an autograph from Dominic. Elijah was very busy, so we didn't get to see much of him, but Dominic was being really sweet and talking to everyone. Elijah's sister Hannah was there too, and she was lovely. While up there, I got the promise of a dance from Dominic. We got found out and kicked off by the security guard, but after a while Dominic came down. We stopped him and and asked him to bring up our medallions for Elijah to sign, and got more pictures. He went up with them. We waited for a while and he finally came back, but said they were still on the table, then went to bug Elijah to sign them for us. A minute later he was back, up on the VIP stage, and dangling the medallions over my head. He also promised then that I could have my slow dance the next day at Orpheus. When they were leaving I got a hug from Elijah and said bye to Dominic.

The next day was the Orpheus ball. My little sister came with me to that, and we were in the first level of VIP, but there were two. Once the parade came by, I yelled at him, and he saw me. He recognized me and grinned, then threw some beads at me, which the person next to me caught. I introduced him to my sister when he came up. Later, when Better Than Ezra was playing, he went up and sang while they played for one song. It was wonderful and I got some pictures of it, cause I knew a short bit beforehand about it. My dad's cousin runs the ball, so when he got back from stage, now in street clothes, we got wristbands and got to go up to the second VIP level. I got my dance from him. We had to leave pretty soon after that, but he gave us both hugs and kisses. I must say that Dominic Monaghan has to be one of the sweetest people I have ever in my life met.

I'll try to get you the pictures in a bit. I'm going to pick them up in about twenty minutes from being developed, then I'll see about scanning some, and try to take some digital pictures of the medallions with autographs. Oh, and from what I saw, Sean Astin was not in fact in Bacchus, and if he was, I somehow completely missed him for the entirety of the ball, which I doubt.

LOTR In Six Movements
Xoanon @ 6:24 pm EST

Didi writes: I just thought you might want to post the program schedule for the “The Lord of the Rings Symphony: Six Movements for Orchestra and Choirs” for those who were lucky enough to get tickets.


Movement One
The Prophecy – Concerning Hobbits
The Shadow of the Past – A Shortcut to Mushrooms
The Old Forest – A Knife In The Dark

Movement Two
Many Meetings – The Ring Goes South – A Journey in the Dark
The Bridge of Khazad-dum – Lothlorien – Gandalf’s Lament
Farewell to Lorien – The Great River – The Breaking of the Fellowship

INTERMISSION (about 10 to 15 minutes)


Movement Three
Foundations of Stone – The Taming of Smeagol
The Riders of Rohan – The Black Gate is Closed – Evenstar
The White Rider – Treebeard – The Forbidden Pool

Movement Four
The Hornburg – Forth Eorlingas
Isengard Unleashed – Gollum’s Song


Movement Five
Hope and Memory – The White Tree – The Steward of Gondor
Cirith Ungol – Anduril

Movement Six
The End of All Things – The Return of the King
The Grey Havens – Into the West

Lords of the Rhymes to Perform in LA and San Francisco!
leo @ 3:58 pm EST

Those Ringers that will be in the LA-area this weekend and still have a hole in their schedule on Saturdaynight: here's what Q-Beam from the highly entertaining hip hop crew The Lord of the Rhymes wrote in to tell us:

For anyone traveling to LA from out of town or just looking for a way to get psyched up for Sunday's Return of the One Party, come join fellow Tolkien lovers this Saturday night at The Echo in Echo Park.

The Lords of the Rhymes will be performing their first ever west coast show for all those who are not able to attend the Sunday night extravaganza hosted by TheOneRing.net. The evening begins at 8pm and features a DJ set by LA's own DJ Gothmog the Troublemaker (from the Hollyrock Crew of Angband), live video projections of Bakshi's LOTR animation and scenes from the Lords' own behind-the-music mocumentary, as well as a coronation of the King of Orange County, Gondor, a gollum ring toss game, a special guest appearance by the Witchking of Angmar, the Grey Pilgrim on the turntables and of course a set by the Lords of the Rhymes.

Following the Return of the One Party, the Lords will head up to San Francisco for a Monday night show.

Saturday, February 28th
Los Angeles
Live at the Echo
1822 Sunset Blvd., Echo Park
phone: 213-413-8200
Doors : 8pm
Tickets: $7 - on sale at www.ticketweb.com

Monday, March 1st
San Francisco
Live at the Elbo Room
647 Valencia Street, The Mission
phone: 415-552-7788
Doors: 9pm
Tickets: $7 - on sale now at www.sunsettickets.com

Don't miss it!

Emerald Rose to release new CD at "Return of the One Party"!
leo @ 2:00 pm EST

Georgia band Emerald Rose, headline musical act at the "Return of the One Party" at the American Legion Hall in Hollywood on Oscars night, will release a new Enhanced CD: "Songs for the Night Sky" produced especially for this event. The CD will include five brand-new recordings, three previously released tracks, original artwork by fantasy artists (and party sponsors) Lindsay Archer (www.lindsay.archer.name) and Monte Michael Moore (www.mavarts.com), and the band's first music video, "Urania Sings."

Party attendees will receive a free copy of this CD as part of their souvenir bag. The CD is a limited edition run, and will only be available at the party, directly from the band, and for a limited time through the band's website at http://www.emeraldrose.com/. A more complete CD with additional tracks, intended for commercial distribution, will be available in late spring.

Emerald Rose now has tracks from their album "Bending Tradition" available through Apple's iTunes store! The direct link is:

2-23-04 Latest News

NZ Short Film: Bogans
Tookish @ 8:59 pm EST


Have you heard about a DVD soon to be released called "Bogans?" It's made in New Zealand... the story line is about 3 Bogans who want to be in the film of Lord of the Rings.

It runs just over 20 minutes long. The director was Grant La Hood. The writer was Peter Tait... who got to play Shagrat in the film. Several other actors... Ian Hughes and Stephen Ure... made it into the film as well.

There's a website that'll soon be up and running that'll tell more about the project. It'll be sold through Real Groovy out of New Zealand. Even P.J. makes an appearance himself.


Paul Bedali: Red Carpet Anticipation
Tookish @ 8:35 pm EST

By Alaina Manning, Freelance Writer

Have you ever attended an Oscar party? If not, now you can say you know someone who has. Paul Badali, local jeweler and president of Badali Jewelry Specialties Inc., is attending the Oscars with style.

Paul was commissioned after the first Lord of The Rings movie to create a pin that was presented to the cast members for good luck at the Oscars from TheOneRing.net. Every year thereafter Paul has created a pin that has been presented to the actors, director, producers, and crew of The Lord of The Rings movie. In February Paul and his business manager, Loria Badali, will be attending TheOneRing.net Oscar party as VIP’s. “I look forward to meeting the people behind The Lord of The Rings movies, those who hold our company in high regard. I am looking forward to knowing them on a personal level.”

So, what would Paul enjoy most of all? “I would really like to meet Peter Jackson; I feel that we have a real kinship. The ideas and thoughts he has about The Lord of The Rings, shown by his extraordinary work, is much the same as mine. Tolkien has given us a great work to admire for a lifetime.”

The creation of the three pins for the Oscars is only a small part of the connection Badali has to The Lord of The Rings saga. Paul and his staff have been licensed by Tolkien Enterprise to create versions of The Lord of The Rings jewelry as depicted in the novels written by J.R.R. Tolkien. “It’s been a long road to success. I am humble and grateful for this experience,” Paul stated while polishing a 14k gold One Ring of PowerTM.

Along the path to fame Badali Jewelry became a global company, “It feels a bit incredible. I don’t feel that it was myself that made my company so successful, I feel that my hard work and determination played a large part, but the company is what it is today because of my employees.” He said leaning back from his work.

“I contribute my success with the people I have surrounded myself with. You can’t manage people, you can just devise a system that works and find extraordinary people to run it. If you are getting bad results it’s not the people, it’s the system.”

Would you be interested in who his incredible employees are? Would you be surprised if they consisted primarily of his family members? “My oldest daughter is the business manager, my second to oldest daughter is the product manager, and my second youngest daughter does all our graphic artwork. Our first line jeweler, who I feel is the son I never had, (being a father of four girls) has been with the company for six years.”

When viewing the Badali Jewelry Specialties Inc. website (www.badalijewelry.com) you can see the expertise and precisions that are placed in Badali’s works. “The challenge is to stretch my limits and make something that makes a difference in life. To be happy and satisfied with the work I perform. Success is as simple as feeling like you have accomplished what you set out to do that day. My jewelry is a personal contribution to others of my commit to quality of life.”

There’s a reason why Paul is so dedicated to his work: “I have always felt that life will throw you a curve ball. You have to be determined and refuse to give up. It has been a lifelong dream to create The One Ring of PowerTM, but to see our company soar so high was beyond my comprehension.”

When asked what moments led up to Paul’s success he said, “Failure. Failure, failure, and failure. I banged my head against a rock for 20 years trying to find a business that would work. This go around I found the correct product with a key market and the perfect people to run my business.”

“Again, I feel humble and grateful. It’s a sense of self-actualization to finally succeed. We strive to make customized jewelry products that are as flawless as humanly possible. It feels great to be recognized for our efforts.”

In Paul’s personal life he enjoys scuba diving and fly fishing. “My passion in life is fly fishing. I have a very scientific and methodical way of catching fish. Success in fishing, in my mind, is virtually guaranteed. I have learned a system that works, the right tools, and how to apply them. This type of system can be applied to most things in life and equal success.”

Well, we will be sure to keep our eye on Paul. Success comes in many ways and Paul is determined to keep on succeeding, “Life is short. I am here to find out who I am and what it is that I choose to do: serve my selfish goals or help others. Life is a do-it-to-yourself experience.”

2-22-04 Latest News

Kweevak Radio: Gandalf and a Hobbit
Xoanon @ 7:54 pm EST

(Suffern, New York) - Don't miss the return of Paul "Turk" Henry of the band Hobbit to the Kweevak Radio Show on Thursday February 26, 2004, starting at 8pm EST. Paul will be back on the worldwide Internet radio show for the second installment of his interview with Kweevak's Rockin Rich Lynch. Mr. Henry will continue the conversation about his band's latest CD called "All For The One" - based on the Tolkien Lord of the Rings trilogy. More songs from the CD will be aired.

Also being discussed will be the Academy Awards presentations taking place on February 29, 2004 in Hollywood, California. "The Return of The King" is nominated for several Oscars including Best Picture and Best Director. The radio show will also announce a Hobbit and Lord of the Rings book discussion and web chat that will take place later in 2004 on the Kweevak Radio Show.

The Hobbit/Lord of the Rings theme starts with our in-studio guest - solo artist Peter Sando, a founder of the band Gandalf who released a psychedelic self-titled record on Capital Records in 1969.

Starting off the show will be a telephone conversation with European indie rocker Dave Adrian to discuss his new book, film, TV & recording projects. Dave always has insightful comments and we anticipate that this appearance will be no different.

For more information on this week's artists and to listen please follow the link to the Kweevak Radio Show on the Kweevak main page at:


Fans and listeners are invited and encouraged to interact with the Kweevak Radio Show at all times via:

* CALL US Toll-Free at 866.369.6788
* AOL IM: kweevak
* CHAT Room on the station's home page

This edition of The Kweevak Radio Show will kick off the weekend-long "Great Leap Forward" listener drive on the revolutionary Internet radio station - http://www.rocklandworldradio.com - broadcasting independent music and original programming to the world - 24 Hours a Day, Seven Days a Week!

Kweevak.com: Music Promotion Portal

2-21-04 Latest News

Howard Shore Signing Session in Montreal
Xoanon @ 8:15 pm EST

Howard Shore Signing Session in Montreal
Click for more images

I have just returned from the Howard Shore book-signing event at the Archambault Bookstore in Montreal. Howard is in town for the 'The Montreal Highlights Festival' event and will be conducting some of his work from The Lord of the Rings on Monday, February 23rd.

As we arrived at the bookstore we were greeted by a large group of fans that were patiently waiting outside the store to get their goods signed by Howard. Inside a small group of TV personalities were waiting for their chance to ask Howard a few questions after the signing was over. Howard specifically asked the media to wait until the singing was over in order to make the fans feel comfortable around him without the whole spectacle of lights and cameras in the way. His lovely wife Elizabeth watched patiently as Howard met countless fans and signed hundreds of autographs. Many people brought CD's for him to sign, but there were copies of LOTR books, DVDs and other interesting things they carried with them. After about two hours the announcement was made that Howard would not be doing any more autographs. That didn't stop a few eager fans from getting around the line and sneaking in to see him, Howard was gracious enough to sign every single one and speak with each fan individually.

While I waited for my chance to interview him on camera I was speaking with one of his personal assistants who told me Howard has been on a grueling schedule lately. He was recently in the UK for the BAFTA Awards, and in the States for Grammys. Of course next week he's off to LA for the Academy Awards and after that it's back to London to score the Extended Edition scenes of The Return of the King!

While speaking to Howard he told me he was eager to do this concert in Montreal, he said being a Canadian it is always nice to get back to his home country. Mind you, being back in familiar grounds can have its risks, while getting ready to pack up for the day a woman arrived and greeted Howard with a big hug. Howard called his wife over and introduced her to the mystery woman, who happed to be his girlfriend back when he was a teenager!

Howard is next working on Martin Scorsese's 'The Aviator' and then Peter Jackson's 'King Kong'. I asked him if he would be heading back down to New Zealand while PJ is filming Kong, he told me that he would most likely be going down there again. He said that seeing the sets and the designs gives him a better feel for the film and almost always influences his work.

As for the Extended Edition of ROTK, Howard is STILL writing it at this moment. His work is never complete.

Howard invited me to his dress rehearsal the afternoon before the concert this Monday. I in turn invited him to the Return of the Oscar Party the night of the Oscars.

Thanks to the folks at Archambault for allowing us to film the event (check for a new episode of TORN Digital soon!). Thanks also to Miriam, Robbie, & Kathy!

Mardi Gras Parade Spoilers!
weetanya @ 1:06 pm EST

[More Images]

Ringer Spy Craig Writes:

I see that you've posted the info about Elijah and Dominic riding in two of the Mardi Gras parades, so I wanted to send you the sketch of the "Hobbits of The Shire" float and a photo of how the actual float turned out.

The sketch is from the Bacchus website, and the float photos were taken by me yesterday.

Elijah will throwing red doubloons (coins) with his likeness on them and very special Bacchus "One" rings. For more info on them and about the hand signed lithographs, go here. And each float in the parade throws a medallion bead that represents that particular floats title. The "Hobbits of the Shire" float will be throwing a beautiful ceramic likeness of Gandalf smoking his pipe. I'll try to get a photo of that to you later.

Also, Elijah informed the krewe yesterday that he will be bringing a few "special friends" with him to ride in the parade. : )


Ringer Spies Dragongrrl and Taro told us about one of Elijah's "special friends"! SPOILER, mouse-over to view!

We spoke to a Security Guard and he told us Sean Astin was here and slated to be a surprise rider in the Bacchus parade.

Hall Of Fire Chats This Weekend
Frode @ 5:10 am EST

An Unexpected Party:

Bilbo Baggins is smoking his pipe and minding his own business when one day the wizard Gandalf arrives at his front door. Gandalf asks if Bilbo would be interested in going on an adventure, but Bilbo declines. He invites the wizard to come over for tea some time so as not to seem rude, but excuses himself not wanting anything to do with adventures. The next afternoon his doorbell rings and a Dwarf pushes past him and sits down to eat by Bilbos table. He's followed promptly by 12 others of his kind and Gandalf. An unexpected party begins.

It soon becomes clear that Gandalf has volunteered Bilbo to be a burglar for the Dwarves on their adventure. Bilbo of course wants none of this and the Dwarves don't find the Hobbit suited at all, but Gandalf sees something in Bilbo.

Gandalf brings out an old map and shows the company a secret entrance to which Thorin the chief Dward holds a key, and Thorin tells Bilbo the tale of his people and Smaug the dragon. After some discussion, Bilbo shows his guests to his guest-quarters and goes to bed to spend a night in troubled sleep.

What are we told about Hobbits and their customs in this chapter? What are the two sides of Bilbo Baggins? What did you first make of the Dwarves and how did Bilbo manage during his trials? How does Bilbo function as a contrast to the Dwarves and Gandalf and the dragon? Join us in #thehalloffire as we discuss 'An unexpected Party' - Chapter I of 'The Hobbit'.

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2-20-04 Latest News

TORn Oscar Party Auction Preview
weetanya @ 9:52 pm EST

From TORn Oscar Party Staffer Garfeimao: Here is a little preview of some of the great auction and raffle items we'll have on display at the Oscar Party.

First off, you have probably already seen on the Party website the Bronze Gandalf statue. That will be a special raffle for which we'll post the specifics in the next few days. Some of our standard raffle items will include TTT extended DVDs and TTT Extended Gift box sets. There will also be some special handmade tiles, signed posters and at least one large movie banner. Remember that to bid, you'll have to bring cash, credit cards, traveller's checks or personal checks from domestic (US) bank accounts.

+ 5x10 Movie banner, signed by Andy Serkis, Alex Funke, Sean Astin, Fran Walsh, Philippa Boyens, Barrie Osbourne and Peter Jackson.

+ 5x10 movie banner, unsigned, same design as above

+ Large outdoor movie banner, 10x30, different design

+ Signed 'Gollum' Standee from Andy Serkis

+ Signed Oscar posters - professional framed

+ No. 7 Orthanc Statue from Sideshow/Weta Collectibles (of 750 total worldwide)


And more to be revealed at the Oscar Party!

Emerald Rose to Perform at 14 Below in Santa Monica on Feb. 27
weetanya @ 12:39 pm EST

Los Angeles -- Emerald Rose has scheduled a debut public performance in L.A. area, in advance of their appearance as featured entertainers at the Post-Oscar party for The Lord of the Rings (www.onering.net). The Celtic folk-rock band from North Georgia will perform a special showcase of their high energy music at 14 Below, a music club in Santa Monica on February 27 from 7:30 to 9:00. The show will be followed by a meet and greet with the artists at the club.

In 2003 the band played their first LOTR Oscar event at last year's "Two Towers" Oscar party. The band has risen from the Atlanta area Celtic music scene, releasing 3 CDs to date and touring on the East Coast (USA) and in Ireland, building a passionate following at Celtic festivals, science fiction conventions and Irish pubs. For over seven years Emerald Rose has blended tradition, mythic themes and humor to develop a unique "Celtic American Folk-Rock sound." Their songs have been featured on radio shows ranging from "The Thistle and Shamrock" and "Green Island" to "The Dr. Demento Show".

Emerald Rose was discovered by The One Ring at DragonCon, an annual Atlanta SCI-FI convention in 2001 and is proud to be the headline band at the post-Oscar party for the second year.

Emerald Rose Website: www.emeraldrose.com

Contact: Brian Sullivan for interviews and information -- brian@emeraldrose.com

14 Below
1348 14th St.
Santa Monica CA 90404


Oscar Party info: www.theonering.net/oscarparty
Source: Brian Sullivan

2-19-04 Latest News

Look who's Tolkien
Xoanon @ 10:38 am EST

And you thought The Lord of the Rings was only a story . . . entire families are smitten by the hobbit habit, says Arabella Warner

My 15-year-old son was approached recently in the playground by a prefect demanding he hand over his ring. Jewellery is not allowed at school and he thought that his Lord of the Rings trinket, bought at a pop festival last summer, was about to be confiscated.

“Just as I thought,” said the older boy. “It is the ‘One Ring’.”

Turning it lovingly in the palm of his hand, the boy began to read the feathery, Arabic style script engraved on it.

“Ash nazg durbatulûk, ash nazg gimbatul, ash nazg thrakatulûk agh burzum-ishi krimpatul,” he read, in menacing tones. “It is the language of the Dark Lord, though the script is in elvish. Keep it safe.” And with that he handed it back and walked off.

How thrilled J. R. R. Tolkien would have been to eavesdrop on that exchange. When he published The Lord of the Rings in 1954, his motivation was, in part, to find an imaginative landscape for languages he had invented. Now, 50 years on, the world seems to have gone mad — or ambar i alassëa as an elf would say — for his book. Although in truth, it took the film to do it.

Since the third part of the cinematic trilogy based on Tolkien’s opus, The Return of the King, was released last December, there has been talk of little else in our household. While the stirring soundtrack pounds as a backdrop to my older son’s GCSE revision, my 11-year-old spends much of his spare time painting miniature dwarfs and orcs from the Lord of the Rings Warhammer collection, boasting on the phone to his cousins that his Riders of Rohan will wipe the floor with their army of Uruk-hai. It’s not just a boy thing either. I recently overheard my 14-year-old daughter in earnest discussion with three friends about the relative attractiveness of the films’ actors. “Orlando Bloom’s well hot,” said one, of the man who plays Legolas. “Nah, he’s a poof,” said another. “Viggo Mortensen’s the one.” “Yeah, but have you seen him without his beard?” said a third. “He’s only fit when he’s Aragorn." And we are not alone. A colleague has just given his seven-year-old son a Lord of the Rings birthday party in which a somewhat baffled entertainer was made to re-enact the Battle of Helm’s Deep for a group of jelly hurling warriors dressed as Aragorn, Boromir and Gandalf. A pricy afternoon: a Legolas suit costs £28.99 (bow and arrows extra).

Now it may seem odd that a seven-year-old should be thrilled by a film that is, by its 12A certificate, allegedly restricted to older cinemagoers. But smaller people have fully absorbed the phenomenon through its spin-offs: the video games, the toys, the dressing-up opportunities. On our high street, there is a Games Workshop, where children as young as seven are cheerfully deposited by their parents every Saturday morning to spend hours rolling dice and moving tiny models of the Lord of the Nazgul over the fields of Pelennor. When I popped in and quizzed an under-ten about the Rings, he instantly knew the names of all the members of the Fellowship, knew their destination and every challenge that faced them.

Put him in an exam room and he was way beyond GCSE and A level and was almost touching PhD Tolkien. “My favourite is the cave troll,” he said, indicating a model nasty. “That’s some wicked monster.” As it turned out he had seen all three films. The truth is, many a parent has turned a blind eye to the warnings on the posters about how scenes might be disturbing to the younger child and actively encouraged their children’s interest because they have bought into the whole phenomenon themselves. And that is the real cunning of The Lord of the Rings: it unites the generations. At my colleague’s party, the most energetic participant of all was the father, decked out as Saruman, who insisted on quizzing all the young guests on the details of hobbit husbandry. Peter Jackson’s trick has been simultaneously to introduce Tolkien’s imagination to a whole new audience, while not disappointing those already familiar with it. Because the book has always had a dedicated cult following.

During the Sixties and Seventies it was a counter-culture bible. The rock group Led Zeppelin took The Lord of the Rings as the inspiration for the lyrics to their songs Ramble On and Battle of Evermore, a rock venue in Covent Garden was called Middle Earth, and Marc Bolan’s partner in Tyrannosaurus Rex called himself Steve Peregrine Took after a Tolkien character.

Back then, students wore badges saying “Frodo is God” and “Gandalf for President”, they changed their names to Bilbo and Galadriel. Some saw it as a political text, the story of the Ring an allegory for the need to destroy nuclear weapons after the Second World War. More recently, just before the invasion of Iraq, an e-mail circulated globally bearing the message, “Frodo has failed”. An attachment showed a picture of George Bush wearing the One Ring of power, wielded in the book by the evil Lord Sauron. For me, brought up on the book, and read all 1,000 pages three times by my father, it was the complete alternative moral universe that I loved. Here was a detailed world of peoples, landscapes and languages, which was recognisable enough to be real, but fantastical enough to transport you somewhere else. Initially sceptical that anyone could film that imaginative sweep, I found myself just as absorbed in Jackson’s work as my children. What a vision, capable of turning a mass audience alleged to possess only a three-minute attention span into aesthetes who will sit through almost nine hours of cinema. Mind you, he was working with the finest source material. It was all there in the book: the battles and love stories, princesses and monsters, pin-ups and role models. Like many a parent I was thrilled that we had common territory that excited us together. Even as the film cycle concludes, there is no end in sight to this phenomenon. Via internet sites you can study language courses in Quenya, the ancient tongue of the elves, discuss the sexual leanings of the two friends Legolas and Gimli, and purchase any Lord of the Rings paraphernalia you could imagine. Including the One Ring. Except, as my son discovered when his was eventually confiscated and popped into a box containing several other specimens, it isn’t the one ring at all. There are thousands available in all shapes and sizes.

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