January 2, 2013

Director Jackson Explains Casting Thorin & Bilbo Roles + Thorin's Thunderous Reverberation--We can ask no more than that! + Total Film Calls Thorin "an immaculate badass"(see below) + Listen to Misty Mtn:Richard Armitage + Downton Abbey Fashion Poll

Sincere thanks to www.richardarmitageonline.com for the above Korean interview and photo(also video below with cast). Good luck with translation;D

Q: Why did you choose Martin and Richard for their roles, and what do you think of their performances?
Jackson: (laughs) Oh, I've got to answer that one carefully. My feeling is that when we're casting films I want a sense of truth and honesty with the performances. And I can say certainly with both Martin and Richard, and for that matter everyone else in the cast as well, there has to be an absolute truth in what they're doing. It's not pretend or pretense. And I think that's even more important in a fantastical film because you're playing a hobbit, or you're playing a dwarf. Essentially, there's a little bit of an alien creature there; they're very similar to us but nonetheless they're not human beings. And so I think the fact that we have to empathise with them becomes absolutely critical for the film. And Martin is a fantastic, dramatic actor, but at the same time, it was important in the character of Bilbo that there was a lot of heart and humour that comes from the fact that he's essentially a very unlikely hero, someone who's on a journey, of experiencing danger that he would rather not experience, being in the company of dwarves he would rather not be in the company of. And there's a lot of social comedy if you like, social humour that comes from the situation that he's in. And not a lot of dramatic actors understand the way to play humour, it's actually a very, very rare skill. And Martin is absolutely superb at that. And the other thing with Martin, too, which I as a director is a huge gift to me is that we could shoot maybe six or seven takes and every take would be different, it would be fresh, and Martin would be continually experimenting with ways to play the scene, yet every single take would be great. I found myself in the cutting room with enormous choice, spoilt for choice. And to see Martin exploring different ways to play the scene, yet there was truth in every single take. Should I stop there and then talk about Richard?
Jackson: And in many respects, I look on the characters of Bilbo and Thorin as the heart and soul of the story, really. Bilbo is the heart and Thorin is the soul. We auditioned the role of Thorin and saw many, many actors and Richard really managed to capture for us the very important sense of nobility because he is essentially playing a king, but also the conflict as to whether or not he has the ability to lead these dwarves on this very difficult quest, a small number to fight a dragon, to reclaim a homeland, it's a very noble thing he's trying to do but he doesn't really have the resources. Also, with the character, there's a sense of honour, the quiet honour that Richard carries which I think is absolutely superb. As an actor, Richard is one of those very rare actors in which he uses stillness and he uses quiet to draw your eye. There can be a lot of things happening on the screen, there can be many characters on the screen, and yet Thorin in his stillness draws your attention. It's a very, very rare skill and he's somebody when he's on screen your eyes go to, you want to watch.



Sue said...


Love the interview featured below. (Oh all except that old chestnut about him running off with the circus bit!)My goodness two glasses of coke and an espresso, he must have a very strong bladder (or perhaps makes sure he's always seated nearest to the loo!)

I like that thick patterned woolly jacket in that new piccy. Looks luvverly and warm and cost, just right for mooching around the ski slopes and long evenings spent in a log cabin/ski lodge.

Ricrar said...

LOL Sue -- half the RA fans on twitter designated the "woolly" jumper as winner of an ugly sweater contest. haha My first thought was perhaps Richard had taken one suggestion too many from his stylist, altho' it could easily have been the magazine *handlers* that chose it for the shoot.

Between the weird Fault Mag photoshoot and now this one for 'Nylon Guys'...must say I have the distinct impression some really *unusual* peeps compose those staffs. Let's be kind and call it creativity;D

As for all the caffeine, doesn't RA look a wee bit tired to you in that photo? Methinks he needed the extra jolts in order to not fall asleep while warmly enveloped in all that heavy wool. He'd never get a chance too do that if it was your arms so snuggly wrapped around him, would he;)

Your ski lodge comment did trigger the thought that he's probably swooshing down a ski slope here or there at the moment. Hope so - it's well deserved after enduring all that "sweat trickling down back of ears" he has recently described more than once.

So, when do you expect Black Sky will be released? That will probably bring the next flurry of RA activity in not too distant future.

Ricrar said...

Here'a another mag heard from Sue. Glamour issued photos a couple weeks ago and today released the interview vid with Richard.


Beth said...

it's a shame that I can not see the interview in Glamour Magazine with this player. I could not get on youtube?

Ricrar said...

Hi Beth, I've just posted the Glamour video above. Hope you enjoy it:)

Sue said...


Oops! It doesn't say much for my taste in clothes if people on twitter think that woolly jacket is a bit naff does it? (Maybe it's the bloke wearing it that makes the difference!)

As for the Glamour interview, to be honest I don't like to see Richard having to jump through hoops and endure all that moody posturing to the camera, I think he's too good an actor to be prostituting himself like that for a few quid.

As for his comment about simply "throwing some wax through his hair" and that he might not even shave, just wash under his armpits, before treading the red carpet, I would guess that he's playing things down (okay telling porkies, as we say over here - you little liar, you!) I bet he's as nervous as hell, running around like a headless chicken, grooming and showering like mad and has thought about what he's going to wear for weeks before hand. He looks absolutely immaculate when he makes public appearances. I like the Tom Ford suit, but to be honest all this designer stuff he's been wearing isn't really him. Stick to good old Armani my advice to Richard would be. Stylish and classy (as opposed to cheap and cheerful).

I reckon he's be girding his loins ready for the next bout of filming of TH. It sounds like he is going to be in all 3 Hobbit films, which leads me to believe PJ has been playing a bit of jiggery pokery with the ending. (That's going to annoy the Tolkien purists!)

Ricrar said...

Good point about the Tolien purists Sue. Just read a review by one who focused almost entirely on Richard and PJ's Thorin interpretation for the film. He definitely approves and somewhat scolded the Tolkien purists. He said the writer had no idea films would someday be created of his novels - therefore those insinuating he wouldn't approve, cannot be taken seriously.

He was very complimentary of Richard's performance. I'll get the link for you. It's really any interesting read.

There are only 2 stylist's choices that caused me to snigger. The blue shoes/red-backed vest combo and aforementioned "wooly" cardigan sweater. Otherwise, I thought the suits were classy - especially one on Welly red carpet and tux for London premiere.

I especially found the leather jackets and rugged sweater combinations to be very masculine - also the smart grey topcoat. Of course, as you said, Richard can wear almost anything with style.

I agree with you that it's sometimes uncomfortable to see him playing endlessly to the fashion cameras/papparazzi, but in at least one interview he said it was important to prove he's not really a smelly dwarf;D He seems to finally have graciously accepted the limelight as a professional necessity.

Have a relaxing and fun weekend.

Ricrar said...

Here's the review:

Sue said...


There's a brief clip of an interview where the Hobbit cast are asked what's in their pockets (nobody offered to turn out their pockets to camera, and some looked very embarrassed indeed - including Richard). He was certainly caught out on the hop and only offered up a hotel room key. I bet he had his pockets filled with naughties. (Is that a chocolate bar in your pocket Richard or are you just pleased to see me!!!)

There's a new historical drama starting tomorrow night over here in England. It's about the founder of Selfridges and looks a little on the saucy side (I'll be very disappointed if it isn't!) I think this may well have the potential to overtake DA.It stars an American actor called Jeremy Piven (I'm ashamed to say I've not come across him before).


Ricrar said...

Nothing to be ashamed of Sue - I've never heard of Jeremy Piven either. Hope he does us proud or at least gets your knickers..errr, never mind;D

The pocket replies were very revealing - Richard didn't even mention his cell phone, to which he always seemed to be deeply attached. Perhaps was concerned the interviewer might ask to see it??

Thanks for the Selfridges link, I'll take a look.

Quite a few new followers on twitter who are sooooo newly in love after the *Thorin Effect* had it's way with them. We predicted this would happen in the middle of the lonnng RA drought - finally it's a reality. They start by asking where they can find N&S, therefore you know their lovestricken condition will only become more advanced:D

As this morning's tweet said "It's 12th Night, which in the colonies is followed by the feast of Downton Abbey."

Ricrar said...

Sue, just learned Julian Fellowes is writing the new 'Gilded Age' series for NBC. That network took a pass on Downton when he offered it a few yrs ago. They insulted us by saying Americans would never watch;D Show proceeded to draw 5Million viewers - largest audience ever for PBS's Masterpiece Theatre.

No doubt the new 'Gilded Age' will also play in UK. It covers the period of US history when industrialization was at it's zenith. Vanderbilts, Rockefellers resided primarily in NYC but I'm sure Fellowes will also include summer vacas to their *cottages*(enormous seaside mansions) in Newport.

You might want to check an article in latest Vanity Fair that I'd stumbled upon yesterday. IMO they took some zingers at Fellowes and also remarked there's a backlash against Downton Abbey over there. Have you noticed the phenomenon? If so, why the negative reaction to such a popular show?