October 21, 2010

BBC America's Reaction + Richard Armitage Cast as Thorin Oakenshield in The Hobbit - Stardom Here He Comes + Merci Beaucoup Musa:)

BBC America(link below) insinuates director Jackson must have chosen his Hobbit cast from their tv schedule, which of course included all 3 seasons of the latest update of Robin Hood.  Did Sir Guy have a Thorin Oakenshield aura about him? ;) 
Accompanying pix of choice for most articles seem to be of the former growling prince of leather..
BREAKING: While Peter Jackson and Warner Bros are figuring out where they'll shoot back-to-back installments of The Hobbit, Jackson and his partner Fran Walsh have begun to set his cast for the ambitious projects that will begin shooting in February for release in December 2012 and 2013. The castings were announced by New Line Cinema COO/president Toby Emmerich, Warner Bros COO/president Alan Horn, MGM co-CEO Steve Cooper, and Jackson. As Deadline told you last week, Martin Freeman is set to play Bilbo Baggins, the adventurous Hobbit whose adventures and discovery of the One Ring leads the story up to The Lord of the Rings. Freeman has appeared in films ranging from The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy and Hot Fuzz to Love Actually.

Jackson has cast several other significant Dwarf characters. Richard Armitage (MI-5 and Captain America: The First Avenger) will play Thorin Oakenshield, leader of the Company of Dwarves which sets off to reclaim the Lonely Mountain from a thieving dragon. Aidan Turner (Being Human) and Rob Kazinsky (EastEnders) will play Kili and Fili, members of the Company of Dwarves. Graham McTavish (Secretariat) will play Dwalin, John Callen (Power Rangers Jungle Fury) will play Oin; Stephen Hunter (All Saints) will play Bombur, and Mark Hadlow (King Kong) plays Dori, while Peter Hambleton (The Strip) will play Gloin. That casting has just beginning, and there will be many more opportunities for the kind of career-changing roles that went in the original trilogy to the likes of Orlando Bloom, Liv Tyler, Viggo Mortensen, Elijah Wood and Sean Astin. None of this is set, but I've heard that James Nesbitt and David Tennant are up for roles, and that Ian McKellan and Andy Serkis are expected to reprise Gandalf and Gollum, though I don't believe they have made deals. Stephen Fry, Saoirse Ronan and Bill Nighy (as the voice of the dragon Smaug) are possible participants, and Aiden Turner is in contention for the Elf King.

"Despite the various rumors and speculation surround this role, there has only ever been one Bilbo Baggins for us," Peter Jackson said. There are a few times in your career when you come across an actor who you know was born to play a role, but that was the case as soon as I met Martin. He is intelligent, funny, surprising and brave -- exactly like Bilbo and I feel incredibly proud to be able to announce that he is our Hobbit."

Of Armitage, Jackson said: "Richard is one of the most exciting and dynamic actors working on screen today and we know he is going to make an amazing Thorin Oakenshield. We cannot wait to start this adventure with him and feel very lucky that one of the most beloved characters in Middle Earth is in such good hands."...
hahaha...at first glance, there's not enough makeup in Hollywood to make this transformation happen...meet Thorin Oakenshield...blue eyes are the only similarity:)
Starting to see a stronger resemblance in the next one..right around the nose area..along with that determined gaze..brilliant blue eyes,wig,beard..a few wrinkles*gasp* and he's Thorin Oakenshield..

[UPDATE: evidently there are upcoming scheduled talks between studio execs & NZ government, so it's possible the sheep might need to move elsewhere;]
Apparently The Hobbit will not be filmed in New Zealand due to union wrangling problems.  Instead, Middle Earth will come to life in the former Harry Potter studios in Watford, Hertfordshire, UK...A rather sad photo of the abandoned hobbit holes in NZ...sheep have already moved in :)  Article link below..
Jackson sounds highly po'd...really can't blame him when you read the details.
Stumbled upon passage from The Hobbit describing dwarves such as Thorin..

>The most that can be said for the dwarves is this: they intended to pay Bilbo really handsomely for his services; they had brought him to do a nasty job for them, and they did not mind the poor little fellow doing it if he would; but they would all have done their best to get him out of trouble, if he got into it...There it is: dwarves are not heroes, but calculating folk with a great idea of the value of money; some are tricky and treacherous and pretty bad lots; some are not, but are decent enough people like Thorin and Company, if you don't expect too much. (Chapter 12)<
Read more: http://news.cnet.com/8301-13505_3-10030085-16.html#ixzz138m6d95N
Very detailed biography of Thorin follows..the name means 'daring'..will he wear a Viking-like helmet?   http://www.tuckborough.net/thorin.html
Above is Thorin at the Lonely Mountain by Alan Lee
Someone has already imagined the transformation from hunk to hobbit dwarf.  This time we might not hear the usual breathless "leather gloves" exclamations;)

Musa suggested perhaps dwarves in leather could heighten the hunk factor.  Believe she's on the right track;)
Excerpt from Thorin's wikipedia page:
>In the upcoming two-part adaptation of The Hobbit (to be released December 2012 and December 2013), Thorin Oakenshield will be played by Richard Armitage.

[edit] Names and titles:   Tolkien borrowed Thorin's name from the Old Norse poem Völuspá, part of the Poetic Edda. The name "Thorin" (Þorinn) appears in stanza 12, where it is used for a dwarf, and the name "Oakenshield" (Eikinskjaldi) in stanza 13.<


Musa said...

RicRAr - de rien...are we all dancing a happy dance here!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Ricrar said...

This should definitely seal stardom for him, right Musa?

It will be another new adventure for me. Need to learn more about the Hobbit. Even reading fantasy-light ASOFaL has been a stretch. Last type character I'd imagine 6'2" RA cast as would be a dwarf:) He'll dwarf all the other characters - perhaps his height was one of the factors that led to the decision. Wasn't that a lovely tribute paid to Richard's talent, when it was announced.

Musa said...

Yes, wonderful to read what Peter Jackson said and what we've all known all along. Big virtual hug for Richard from all his fans :)
I'm not a big fantasy fan either, have never read Lord of the Rings or The Hobbit. I did see the LOTR movies. Never heard of ASOIAF before Sean Bean was cast in GoT either.But you're excellent at doing research so I look forward to reading all about The Hobbit here!

Ricrar said...

Well, thank you for the kind words Musa. At first glance looks as though the internet is filled with information on Tolkien's characters.

The second depiction found of Thorin does have that distinct Armitage nose and steely-eyed gaze. Looks as tho' Richard will wear wig, beard, mustache and wrinkles. His eyes & voice might be the only recognizable part of him. These are not the kind of fantasies we had in mind when first smitten...are they? hehe;)

Musa said...

Would never have pictured him as a Dwarf!
Can see the resemblance by a nose on the second Thorin pic you posted :)
If Heinz Kruger can have a major makeover, why not Thorin?

Anonymous said...

OMG super excited! I've never been much of a fan of The Hobbit, I read it but can't remember much because it took me very long to finish (it felt to dense). I think I shall read it again.

Seems weird he's supposed to be a dwarf, how will they deal with his height? Unless he's taller than the other dwarf but shorter than other 'species'....

I'm so happy for him, another big screen role and he'll get make up that might change/cover his very good looking features and I think that's something he'll like.

OML :)

Sue said...

Didn't Richard say he read the Hobbit when he was a kid? I remember reading Lord of the Rings when I was young, but have no idea about the Hobbit at all! How on earth are they going to disguise his 6'2" stature? That will take more than a bit of panstick make-up for sure! I think he will be brilliant!

Ricrar said...

Is anyone else starting to get a 'Lucas is dead---long live Thorin' feeling from most fans? hehe Only joking...we'll stay with the hottest MI5 agent on 2 legs as long it takes.

Filming for the hobbit is scheduled to start in Feb. I thought the SB2 start date was planned for the same time period? Richard will need mega-vitamins to keep his dramatic juices flowing next yr.

Hobbit movie will be released in 2 parts - Dec, 2012 & 13.

Sue said...

It seems to have gone all quiet on the Strike Back front, given the choice Richard would be foolish to sign up for SB2 instead of The Hobbit, this is his big break after all, it's a film!

I must admit in a way I am a little forelorn as though we have now lost that quiet, shy, lovely man to the ravinous wolves of Hollywood. I hope he doesn't lose that lovely northern humour and quiet demeanour that his fans find so endearing but I fear he will turn into just another one of those big-headed numpties that litter the red carpets of LA!I hope that he proves me wrong, as it's his talent and shy, thoughtfulness that I love the most about him. (Mind you those thunder thighs and piercing blue eyes aren't bad either!)One things for sure there will be no bare backsides in The Hobbit (will there? Shame!)

Ricrar said...

Sue, the new role might give Richard the financial independence to make his other dream(s) come true - Richard III and/or The Rover.

Doubt you need worry about his head growing too large for his hobbit hat. He's managed to keep it sensibly balanced on his shoulders despite all the adulation over the past few yrs.

No one will be swooning over Thorin, but many Tolkien fans seem to consider him one of the most beloved characters of middle earth. As we're well aware, he'd rather the public's respect than it's adoration. Looks as though a gray-bearded 6'2" dwarf (w/a rivetting voice) will counter balance his hottie image, and open doors for even juicier future roles. Looks as though any marriage plans will need to be pushed forward to 2012. Doubt he'll find any R&R free time next yr.

Ricrar said...

Looks as though someone needs to bury those 3 words for awhile. *wink*

DA#N edit-challenged comment box:)

Musa said...

Yes RicRAr, I do get the"Lucas is dead---long live Thorin' feeling from SOME fans?" HA!
I hate what the writers have done to Lucas, I will always love Lucas no matter what happens, and would love to see him continue to Season 10 (I avoid reading the BBC spoilers), but looks like it may not happen. But I'm deliriously happy about this turn of events! RA the movie star-well deserved. I hope Sue that he doesn't change from the wonderful down to earth guy he is now. I don't think he will.

Ricrar said...

Isn't the photo of abandoned hobbit holes absolutely precious. Their loss is the sheeps gain.

Found a sweet passage from the hobbit novel describing dwarves. Will post above. Still cannot think "RA is a dwarf" without triggering a chuckle.

Carolynd1 said...

I am so excited I could scream,in fact, I did! I am so happy for Richard. This is a major role in a major movie. Something we have been wanting for him. I loved LOTN!

Carolynd1 said...

I meant, I loved LOTR!

Ricrar said...

Hey there Carolyn:)...very exciting indeed. I'm quickly learning it's another one of those complicated good vs dark side roles that Richard relishes. The dwarf(haha;) is described as basically good & courageous, but ambitious for wealth - which leads to what would be a gigantic spoiler if mentioned this early in the venture.

Anonymous said...

I'm quite worried about Lucas at this point, I feel like he might be leaving/dying (but I feel bad for the character this season - he deserves so much more than this). I mean, Richard can't do Strike Back 2, Spooks and The Hobbit at the same time, can he? But as long as we're getting something from him, I'm happy :)

I'm a big LoTR fan and have read the Hobbit. Can't wait for this movie.
And about the height thing;
John Rhys-Davies who played the dwarf called Gimli in the LoTR movies is 5 ft 10, where Richard is 6 ft 2. They made Gimli happen, it looked good, so I think they will do excellent job with Richard too.

-- aprillia

Musa said...

aprillia, I feel exactly like you do about Lucas. I dread the next three episodes and what might happen. The character we met and got to know in Season 7 and 8 deserved to stay our hero until the end. I especially hate the fact they've made him a fool for a woman. Maybe if the love affair with Maya had been more believable, but now! No!
Well,back to our now favorite dwarf Thorin, I just read on RAnet the movie is going to be filmed in 3D. Richard in 3D!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I hope they don't "uglify" him too much-LOL. Yes, for Gimli and the Hobbits (though that group of actors are smaller in stature) they used a variety of things to make us believe. I need to start saving money now for The Hobbit Part 1&2 Extended Edition DVDs-LOL

Ricrar said...

My only introduction to Tollien's fantasy series was happening upon what I believe was LOTR, if Sean Bean played one of the characters.

The sole reason I'd stopped to watch, while channel surfing, was because I'd seen RA's name surface here & there re one of the roles. Curiosity was the motivator and my impression was one of a thoroughly imaginative, almost childlike/Disneyesque world w/ the influence of a knightly code of honor sprinkled throughout the tale. Definitely the type of story that can positively stretch impressionable young minds.

Currently finishing Martin's fantasy-light novel 'A Clash of Kings' which has a far more subdued presence of dragons and assorted other-world creatures.

By the time we're actually watching Thoren in The Hobbit, we'll probably know more about the movie's production than almost any other to date. Really interested in details of exactkt how a 6'2" heart-throb will become a morally conflicted(here we go again:) money-hungry(although basicly good:) 59yr-old gray-bearded, sword swashing dwarf.

Musa said...

Yes, Sean Bean played Boromir in LOTR, Fellowship of the Ring(more on the extended version). Sean Bean's characters have a tendency to have the same sad fate, including Boromir.
Yes, another brooding, conflicted, character. Perfect for him, but he so wants something more romantic or funny! We do too, don't we?

Anonymous said...

The CGI will take care of the height factor! (Though I do giggle at the thought of a 6'2" actor cast as a dwarf! Poetic justice for all us short people? Just kidding).

Actually, it's a tribute, indeed from Jackson and the rest to RA's acting abilities. And to be mercenary, hope the renumeration is so good, that the Richard III miniseries will be bankrolled...


Ricrar said...

Yes, fitzg, The Hobbit should receive wide news coverage while in production. Perhaps Richard will already be a household name by the time Thorin flashes across theater screens.

The actors' movie promotion for the premiere is still 2yrs away, but I'm already wondering if RA will finally guest on US talk shows. oooooh! exciting thought:) The best pairing for him would be with Craig Ferguson--the hilariously clever Scottish comedian who hosts The Late Late Show.

If the afternoon 'Ellen' show is still on the air in 2012, she always asks her guests to demonstrate their hottest dance moves before being interviewed. Of course, Richard is a natural for that. When Ellen notices his finesse, it's almost a given she'll join in for awhile. Two years! arrrrgh! :) Ah well...we have SB2 in the meantime and possibly a play.