As The Hobbit will be hitting our screens at the end of the year now seems like a good time to relive the magic of the Lord of the Rings trilogy, and learn a few new facts about the books, the films and Middle Earth as a whole. Enjoy!
During his lifetime JRR Tolkien wrote 34 books and across them all he made up 37 new languages. The elven languages he created were exceptionally well developed and people still study them to this day.
The Lord of the Rings is the third best-selling single volume book of all time, behind A Tale of Two Cities and The Little Prince. It’s sold somewhere in the region of 150 million copies across the world and has been translated into more than 40 different languages.
Tolkien sold the film rights to his epic trilogy back in 1969 for a mere 10,000 dollars. A bit of a bargain when you consider that the films earned almost 3 billion dollars at the box office.
27 copies of the books were needed just to create the screenplay for the films. Thousands of notes were scrawled all over each copy and hundreds of pages were torn out, so they pretty much unreadable by the end.
Billy Jackson (Peter Jackson’s son) is the only actor in the entire trilogy that doesn’t wear a wig. He plays a hobbit in The Fellowship of the Ring, and his father thought his hair was already perfect.
After Jackson had finished filming the trilogy he bought the entire Bag End set, (that’s Bilbo Baggins’ house in case you didn’t know). He put it into storage and said that one day he planned to build it into the side of a hill. Though presumably his plans were scuppered when it was decided The Hobbit would be made.
Bill, everyone’s favourite pony, isn’t always played by a horse. There are a few scenes in the film where the horse is actually two people wearing a costume. It must be a bit better than your average pantomime outfit though because it seemed pretty convincing.
Across the three films the principal hobbit cast got through 1,800 pairs of synthetic hobbit feet.
Facts about Middle Earth
The average height for a hobbit is 1.05 metres, or 3′ 5″ and raw mushrooms are their favourite snack.
Arwen is one of a select number of elves who has the option to choose a mortal life. She can do so because some of her ancestors were human.
The friendship between Gimli and Legolas is an attempt to show reconciliation between Dwarves and Elves who felt animosity towards each other for centuries. Gimli also becomes besotted with Galadriel when he first meets her, and asks for a strand of her hair as a gift.
(Guest post) When he’s not taking the hobbits to Isengard Robert Holmes writes about the many gifts for men available at Find Me A Gift, the gift ideas people.