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Lord of the Rings Entertainment

Tolkien Trust Okays Hobbit Movie 325

Posted by Soulskill
from the if-i-say-he-is-a-burgla-a-burglar-he-is dept.
saudadelinux writes "Last year, the Tolkien Trust, which administers JRR's estate, bellowed stentoriously, 'Youuuu shall not make The Hobbit!' and sued New Line Cinema for 'a reported $220m (£133m) in compensation, based on breach of contract and fraud.' New Line, chastened, has settled for an undisclosed sum of money. The Trust has given its blessing to New Line for Guillermo del Toro to film The Hobbit and for New Line to make other films based on Tolkien's work. Much rejoicing!"
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Tolkien Trust Okays Hobbit Movie

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday September 09, 2009 @09:56AM (#29365223)
    I'd say it did backfire on them. They settled because they don't want their books to be opened in court.
  • by Em Emalb (452530) <ememalb.gmail@com> on Wednesday September 09, 2009 @10:07AM (#29365371) Homepage Journal

    Sue company for "an undisclosed sum", then allow them to go ahead and make the movie(s).

    LUDICROUS JIBS!

    Or:

    1) sue movie company
    2) profit
    3) allow movie company to make said movie(s)
    4) profit again.

    To hell with the underpants gnomes, this is the true 4 step process right here.

  • Tolkien Trust? (Score:1, Insightful)

    by NoYob (1630681) on Wednesday September 09, 2009 @10:13AM (#29365451)
    I see. A bunch of lawyers, administering the IP for the grandkids and great gradnkids who are sitting on their asses because of the work of their (great) grandfather.

    It's one thing for the author/creator to benefit from his hard work and maybe even the kids if the author creates something and dies before the copyright runs out. But having IP becoming an income stream for the great grandkids? I'm not sure that's what copyright was intended to do.

  • by MightyMartian (840721) on Wednesday September 09, 2009 @10:14AM (#29365463) Journal

    LotR was godawful. It's a pretty unfilmable book. The Hobbit will be much more amenable to being made into a movie.

  • Re:Oh great (Score:2, Insightful)

    by JasonWM (991689) on Wednesday September 09, 2009 @10:18AM (#29365507) Homepage
    Obviously you guys didn't get the Clerks 2 reference:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b0sc-gS9AqM/ [youtube.com] nsfw
  • by segedunum (883035) on Wednesday September 09, 2009 @10:18AM (#29365509)
    Apparently, the Tolkien Trust is supposed to be a charity. Businesses masquerading as charities seems to be de jour these days, not to mention the tax benefits....... I digress.

    Anyway, am I the only person who actually read The Hobbit, thought it was a great book, read Lord of the Rings and thought it was good, if long-winded, and then absolutely hated the films? I honestly don't see what others seems to see in those films at all. They're far more long-winded than the book(s), lacking in focus, lacking in atmosphere, poorly acted in parts (mostly because of the lack of focus), has some very poor imitation of 'The Mission' as its soundtrack, very pretentious and not exactly faithful to the book(s) at all. "Lean forward!" - WTF?! They're certainly not trilogies that will live in the memory like Star Wars (the proper trilogy, that is). I just don't want to see a book that's better than the Lord of the Rings getting the same Peter Jackson personal massacre treatment as well as all the fan worship that seems to go around with them.
  • by hort_wort (1401963) on Wednesday September 09, 2009 @10:23AM (#29365597)

    I really enjoyed the music from the ole animated Hobbit. I pretend I'm an orc and run around singing it sometimes while chasing animals up trees.

  • by rawiswar (1605157) on Wednesday September 09, 2009 @10:26AM (#29365629)
    Its just a matter of opinion. To this day, I think Star Wars (almost all of them) were crap.
  • Re:Derivitive work (Score:2, Insightful)

    by artaxerxes (94297) on Wednesday September 09, 2009 @10:29AM (#29365701)

    Narn i [C]Hin Hurin please.

  • Re:Oh great (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Kjella (173770) on Wednesday September 09, 2009 @10:37AM (#29365797) Homepage

    and more ultra fail combat moments from the main character. How many times did froto get stabbed ?

    What do you expect from a hobbit dragged out of a peaceful life? Might as well drag the average american off their couch, hand them a sword and throw them in a duel to the death. The only real issue is to make it semi-credible that he survives it all, not merely be wounded.

  • Re:Hooray! GDT!!! (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Red Flayer (890720) on Wednesday September 09, 2009 @10:42AM (#29365875) Journal
    I'm just looking forward to a (hopefully) creeped out Mirkwood. I have high hopes for del Toro being able to make people squirm in their seats as the party traipses through it.

    Unfortunately, I kind of dread what he's going to do with the physiognomy of the Wood Elves... I fear it may be too fairy-tale-ish, some kind of caricature of what we have all grown accustomed to from the three Jackon films.

    OTOH, if the whole movie is done in del Toro's fairy-tale style, then it may work... but that's a big risk for New Line to take.
  • by Dan667 (564390) on Wednesday September 09, 2009 @10:43AM (#29365893)
    New Line made $6 billion and tried to screw Peter Jackson and the Tolkien Trust what they were owed (actually I still think they got screwed being paid $220 million). Instead of letting Jackson and the Hobbit make them a new pile of money, New Line tried to keep it all themselves. Have to wonder why the management of New Line still has a job making business decisions like that. Shareholders should be angry it has taken this long to settle holding up the next movie. And anytime anyone wants to give me $6 billion dollars for a $220 million payment and what ever Jackson got, and the potential for a new big pile of cash let me know there would be no waiting or bad faith like New Line.
  • by mcgrew (92797) * on Wednesday September 09, 2009 @10:50AM (#29365971) Homepage Journal

    That's what they get for bribing Congress to grant them perpetual copyrights. Serves them right.

  • by Abcd1234 (188840) on Wednesday September 09, 2009 @10:55AM (#29366027) Homepage

    But on Pan's Labyrinth alone I'm willing to give the credit. No one can create something with that much depth in meaning, character, and visuals on a fluke.

    Funny, I disagree. Let's take the Wachowski brothers. In The Matrix, they created one of the great action movies of our time, blending incredible visuals with an engrossing (if admittedly derivative story) and pulled it off masterfully. And yet, the followups were *terrible*, and what have they done since? Speedracer. *gag*

    Similarly, George Lucas has been credited with some fine films (Star Wars and Indiana Jones come to mind... neither have the pure artistic sense of Pan's Labyrinth, but they're still fine movies), and yet Return of the Jedi and the Star Wars prequels were *terrible*.

    Hell, I'm sure there are *many* other directors who, for one reason or another, just managed to get lucky with a strong script, a strong cast, a good editor, a good director of photography, etc, and managed to put something together that, as a whole, exceeded their singular abilities.

    Maybe his stuff isn't that great in translation? Especially when he's working in translation, like Hellboy.

    Bah, that's just a bullshit excuse. The man is a director, not a screenwriter. If he can't take existing material, understand it, internalize it, and then transform it into a decent film, that's his fault, plain and simple.

    Now, to be fair, I suspect Hellboy and it's sequel also suffered from a plain ol' shitty script, but even so, at minimum, del Toro should've seen that and said 'no' to the project at the outset. But he didn't. So he either has no sense of artistry, or he's a sell-out. Frankly, I can't figure out which. But neither is a good thing.

  • Re:Hooray! GDT!!! (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Khashishi (775369) on Wednesday September 09, 2009 @11:11AM (#29366269) Journal

    Pan's Labyrinth may not be for everyone, but it's is certainly among the top tier in movies. Maybe you should stick to Disney if you want something less depressing.

  • by czarangelus (805501) <iapetus@NoSPAM.gmail.com> on Wednesday September 09, 2009 @11:17AM (#29366355)
    Next he needs to film the Silmarillion. I expect at least two movies, possibly up to three. Needs more Valar. The two trees, Uglinaut, the duel between Melkor and Feanor, the fall of Numenor... it would kick ass.
  • by ClosedSource (238333) on Wednesday September 09, 2009 @11:19AM (#29366395)

    "Hell, I'm sure there are *many* other directors who, for one reason or another, just managed to get lucky with a strong script, a strong cast, a good editor, a good director of photography, etc, and managed to put something together that, as a whole, exceeded their singular abilities."

    Yes, Del Toro was really lucky to find a strong script for Pan's Labyrinth --- flowing from his fingertips.

  • Del Toro (Score:5, Insightful)

    by lymond01 (314120) on Wednesday September 09, 2009 @11:23AM (#29366443)

    He wrote Pan's Labyrinth (one of the more disturbing films I've seen in the past, well, my life) and Hellboy 2. He has a distinctive style but the creatures in both films had a similar look and feel about them. I never saw Hellboy 2, only the previews, but the look of the film was similar, even with the light-heartedness of Hellboy's character. If nothing else, he should give an interesting take on the Hobbit, and it will likely be very different from Jackson's more traditional view of the epic series of books.

    The Lord of the Rings books, to me and to many others, consolidated our mythology of elves and orcs, swords and dragons. If you've played nethack (rogue), then you've probably heard of lembas wafers (elven waybread from the books). If you've played D&D, then you'll know the orcs, goblins, trolls...all based on mythology...were fleshed out in the Lord of the Rings and transferred to the D&D system. Only elves, oddly, are slightly different, probably for balance reasons as in the books they are basically superhuman immortals, better than humans in almost every way.

    The movies held true to the main plot, especially if you watched the extended editions (which saved Faramir's character). I have no idea why they wasted 5 minutes of movie time on the collapsing bridge scene in Fellowship of the Ring ("No one tosses a dwarf!"). I guess is it was just to build up to the balrog scene, which was pretty much spot on in terms of what the book says it should be. I don't love the movies since I'm a big fan of the books and find them better. But I appreciate them and find them very watchable. I know people who never read the books that consider those movies some of the best ever made, and I can see why. They really are a spectacle in terms of movie-making, especially the huge battles at the end of the 2nd and 3rd films. There's a fair amount of cheese and kiddish happenings, but they really do play to all audiences.

  • by guyminuslife (1349809) on Wednesday September 09, 2009 @11:23AM (#29366465)

    Fewer people have seen "The Devil's Backbone," but it's another good Del Toro flick for people who would die before seeing Hellboy. That's actually the movie that made me a fan of his; Pan's Labyrinth came out later.

    As far as I can tell, Del Toro is actually a fan of cheesy comic books, and did the Hellboy movies for that reason.

    The point being, the guy isn't a one-track director. He directs arty foreign magical realist cinema and cheesy American action flicks. It's not "getting lucky", it's working in different modes.

  • by jollyreaper (513215) on Wednesday September 09, 2009 @12:02PM (#29366949)

    Funny, I disagree. Let's take the Wachowski brothers. In The Matrix, they created one of the great action movies of our time, blending incredible visuals with an engrossing (if admittedly derivative story) and pulled it off masterfully. And yet, the followups were *terrible*, and what have they done since? Speedracer. *gag*

    Even more immediately, Peter Jackson made Rings which is damn close to perfect, a balance of beautiful imagery, effects, and acting and then goes right on to make King Kong, a movie as artless as Rings was artful. It was loud, dumb, unnecessary, and a perfect example of how Hollywood gets it wrong. Kong is exactly what I feared Rings might be back when the project was first announced. I find it impossible to believe the same man was involved with both.

  • by spun (1352) <<moc.oohay> <ta> <yranoituloverevol>> on Wednesday September 09, 2009 @12:37PM (#29367447) Journal

    Boo fucking hoo, somebody inherited something of value, and you didn't. Yeah, it's an imaginary something, but in our system even decades old imaginary ideas are valuable. That's life in capitalist, corporatist America. Why single out the Tolkien trust? Because Tolkien should be free to be adapted and misused by every leach out there, not just the official leaches? You REALLY aren't thinking this through.

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