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June 30, 2000 - July 27, 2000


Ferguson IS Gil-Galad!
Tehanu @ 10:09 pm EST
From: Rene

Mark Ferguson was on the Good Morning show last week talking about the scale of the filming. Mark said he's playing Gil Galad, he also said his scenes were filmed on the Ruapehu location.

Mark has acted in such shows as 'Xena' 'Hercules' and 'Shortland Street' like most NZ actors (that show must employ more people than MacDonalds). More info on our cast page as soon as we update.


Edoras Set News
Xoanon @ 3:33 pm EST
From: The Jazza

Peter Jackson and Co. are having to truck in strips of tussock grass as the river beds around the set don't have enough grass cover for shooting. The tussock is coming from the A&P showgrounds in Christchurch where it is being dug up and cut by hand. It is being sold to movie producers at a 1300% markup!!!!!!

Also, there aren't many free holiday house left empty at Lake Clearwater. The movie producers are paying up to $40 per person per room per night to rent them out. One happy home-owner has rented his humble abode out for $27000 (NZ) for six months!!!

Altariel visits Wingate Set
Calisuri @ 2:40 pm EST
Super Ringer Spy Altariel takes a look at the building of a set in Wingate:

They have started building a new set out at Wingate-just like I said-but it has nothing to do with Rivendell, at lest not as far as I can tell. I got some pic's of it, its not much built yet but I still love the picture and reackon you should post it on the site because everyone will spend hours pondering over what it might be-I certainly have no idea-nut I can say that up close its obvious that the big spiky wheel is ment to turn because all the cogs and little dohickys that you find on wheels are all there. I think it must be in water, that is what they had on this set the last time they were filming there.

click for larger image


Near Twizel
Calisuri @ 9:12 pm EST
Tehanu passed through Twizel on her long search for Middle-earth during the Christmas holidays. These are the images that caught her attention in that area.

\[ Click me \]\[ Emyn Muil 1 \]
\[ Emyn Muil 2 \]


News from VSDA 2000
Calisuri @ 11:56 am EST
Wow! Thanks to J. Morris for this tip:

"To Whom it May Concern,

Not sure if this has been brought to your attention yet, but Bill Hunt's DVD website "The Digital Bits" (www.thedigitalbits.com) has posted some pictures from the Video Software Dealer's Association Show in Las Vegas. A couple of the shots show a small display case from New Line, featuring some props from LOTR. The page with the pictures is here:


One of the "props" appears to be a model of the odd, bug-eyed creature first spotted on the computer screen in the LOTR teaser (the one some people mistook for Gollum).

- J. Morris"

VSDA 2000 - LOTR PropsVSDA 2000 - LOTR Props
What is this\? A Troll\?

This is definitely something that was missing from last week's IGN report. I wonder what the large "King Kong" looking thing can be. Possibly the troll we have seen so much of in the Internet Preview?

Another possibly idea: The Balrog? Doubt it. From all reports, WETA is guarding the Balrog tighter then Fort Knox.

But then again, why was this image left out of the initial report? Hrm...very interesting!


Fernside Lodge Shoot
Xoanon @ 1:06 am EST
Ringer Spy Andre and his better half Nicky report on the scenes that took place at Fernside Lodge (original story).

We are staying at Fernside Lodge this weekend. We've been talking to the Proprietor about the LOTR filming that they had here two weeks back. Apparently Sean Bean (Boromir) and Cate Blanchett (Galadriel) were both here filming, and the total crew numbered about 200. They filmed here for a total of 4 days. Fernside has these amazing grounds with various water features. One of them, a large lake, was used to film scenes involving a river. A large tree was built next to the lake, and root structures were created to look like canals that canoes moored in.


Lyall Bay Pics
Xoanon @ 1:30 pm EST
Ringer Spy Humphrey sends in these pics from Lyall Bay, which was recently privy to some filming involving Viggo Mortensen (Aragorn) as well as others. Read all about it here.

Unfortunately Humphrey missed the party, but managed to snap a few pics on the land they were using to film. It's going to be great to watch these films in the coming years and say 'ah THAT'S what they filmed there!'...well, fun for me at least :)

Click on each image to enlarge


Busch-Man Reveals all!!
Xoanon @ 11:07 am EST
Ringer Spy Busch-Man sends in his review of the SIX Minute footage seen at ShoWEST!

I had the great fortune of seeing the LOTR ShoWEST footage. It was about 6 minutes long, and I was stunned.

I just wanted to say that I cannot stop thinking about it. It's truly staggering. I've read the books several times, and everything looked GREAT.

It starts off much like the internet trailer, with the booming voice saying 'From the greatest book of the 20th century'. It also showed some video games like Final Fantasy, as well as a Led Zeppelin album cover, all the while the 'voice' saying 'it has influenced millions of people around the world'. It then goes on to show Peter Jackson, saying how this is the time to make these films. But that is where it changes from the internet preview. There are many many shots from the films, a few stills and some great clips. The ones that stick out from memory are:

Viggo Mortensen fighting some soldiers in what appears to be ruins of a castle

Shots of Liv Tyler on a horse

A shot of John Rhys-Davies as Gimli.
A small interview with Sean Astin

Gollum Pics

Troll Pics

Tons of CGI and real armies fighting

A shot of Hobbiton from inside a Hobbit Hole

I got to also see dozens of stills that I've never seen before, and one thing I can say is, as good as the makeup and costumes look in the quicktime trailer, seeing them in higher resolution took my breath away. I was able to tell that John Rhys-Davies isn't even recognizable under all that makeup, but he looks terrific. Orlando Bloom and Viggo Mortenson look perfect - I was able to see some more images of both of them, and it really made me happy how 'right' they look. There was one particular still of Liv Tyler in character, and I swear, she looks like... well, some supremely beautiful and mysterious member of another race. Not human. All the actors looked just fabulous. The orc makeup is unbelievably detailed, and the locations are simply too good to be true. It's a Lee or Howe painting come to life.

There was more info about the CGI shrinking techniques as well, some shots they'll be using two sets of dollies (Dollies: tracks along wich a camera can roll along), one for the camera and one for the 'Small' character who is standing or sitting further away from the regular sized actor (like that pic of Ian McKellen and Elijah Wood), when both are moving along opposite ways, you can move the camera, and have the 'small' looking character interact with the large one.

They also interviewed someone involved with the CGI fighting armies, the guy said that each individual 'CGI fighter' will have a mind of his own, and that no one will need to program them, they'll know who is next to them, and if they're challenged they'll either sidestep, fight, dodge, or run away. They showed some of the fighting armies, it was amazing! They were lobbing off heads and fighting pitched battles.

From what I saw, we have absolutely nothing to worry about. The film is in safe hands.

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