It all started in 1997, when rumors started on the net that the Lord of the Rings was being
made into films, by cult director Peter Jackson.
Very quickly, it became clear that Peter was going to make something special, never seen before.
Through the reports, his statements and early footage among other things, fans began to understand
that he was the right man in the right place, at the right time.
Today, so many years later, The Lord of the Rings is
not only a literary masterpiece, but also one the finest fantasy movies
ever created, thanks to the effort made by Peter Jackson and the whole team beyond LotR.
In this section, I intend to explore not only the movies themselves, as the whole "making of" story.
Nothing about the Lord of the Rings movies was normal. Budgets where big, logistics where big, and as a consequence,
studio execs where more than cautious, and nervous.
As a result, Miramax abandoned the project, and the movies almost didn't get made. Fortunately, New Line saw the potential,
and commited not to the orginal plan of making two movies, but three.
What follows is a statement that Peter Jackson made to Aint It Cool News, right after the deal with New Line was closed, back in 1998. I will post
more "Lord of the Rings movie history" in the coming days and weeks.
Wow! I am blown away by the reaction to New Line's announcement! I have read every message posted on Harry's site so far. I was a little nervous about the job ahead of me ... now I know the feeling of true terror!
How am I going to make The Lord of the Rings? I love these books as much as most of you do. I am going to make 3 very personal movies. This will be "The Lord of the Rings" that I would dream of seeing at the movies. At least I'm going to try and get as close to that as I can. I can't make your version, or anybody elses. Trying to second guess what millions of fans have in their heads would be fatal.
I know this sounds glib and defensive ... the books are masterpieces and always will be. There's nothing anybody could do on film that could destroy the quality or influence of J.R.R.Tolkien's writing. In future decades, in a world of holograms and virtual entertainment, our movies will be old relics ... and the books will still be a great read.
I guess if I was making the movies for anyone else, it would be Professor Tolkien himself. I will never know what he would think of the films we are about to make, but by being faithful to his themes, his characters and the things he clearly cared about, I can at least feel I'm honouring his wonderful imagination in the best way I know how.
I do not intend to make a fantasy film, or a fairy tale. I will be telling a true story - just as I feel when reading the books.
Most of you care greatly about these books, and I know how frustrating it must be to feel that movies are being made so far away, and with so long to wait. That's why I suggested to Harry that he gather together 20 of the most common questions and give me a chance to answer them. I don't want you folk to feel that you are ignored or left out during this process. If this works out, it's something we could do on a semi-regular basis over the next 3 years.
There's no rules, but be aware that there are things about the films that I don't want to give away at this early stage. So you will have to forgive me if I'm coy about some topics. One tip: Don't waste too many questions asking about casting. We haven't begun that process yet, and nobody has been approached, or even discussed. We haven't had a single casting conversation with New Line. Save those questions until later.
As soon as Harry sticks the questions up, I'll have a go at answering them!
Thank you to all those people who have been supportive.
The rest, as they say, is history...