January 25, 2002
3:48 PM   Subscribe

New Line may add footage to the end of the theatrical release of The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship Of The Ring. "We're going to change the last reel out and do a preview of Two [Towers] at the end of the last reel..."
posted by tranquileye (32 comments total)
A shamless gimmick to make the hard-core crowd pay and see it just one more time. Needless to say, I'd be first in line.
posted by muckster at 3:57 PM on January 25, 2002

That may very well be the case, muckster, but I think it's a good move nevertheless... when I went and saw it last week (for the first time -- I'll go again when the new material is there), many of the folks leaving the theatre with me were a little disappointed.

For folks that aren't fully clued-in, it's not exactly apparent that this is the first 3 hours of a 9 hour movie... not the first movie of a trilogy.

I think adding previews to the next installment could go a long ways to managing expectations...
posted by silusGROK at 4:11 PM on January 25, 2002

In other news, the Superbowl may contain advertising, reports indicate. This is not yet confirmed; we'll keep you posted.
posted by dhartung at 4:36 PM on January 25, 2002

This irks me. Can't let things be?
A money making decision, nothing else.
I haven't seen the movie yet.
Should I wait now and see it with the add on?
posted by ooogiebooogie at 4:38 PM on January 25, 2002

I saw LOTR for the second time today. I have to say, I yawned more than once. I don't think I'd sit through it a third time. I'm sure that if New Line isn't just doing it to make money, they'll also release the previews on the web.
And if they were really crass, they'd be smarter to make sure they show the previews in front of one of their more mediocre releases.
posted by crunchland at 4:45 PM on January 25, 2002

For folks that aren't fully clued-in, it's not exactly apparent that this is the first 3 hours of a 9 hour movie...

When all is said and done and the DVD box set is out, it might be more like a fourteen or fifteen hour movie. Assuming that the rumors of a five-hour cut of FotR are true. I am looking forward to seeing what is on the DVD.

This is the ONLY movie that came out last year that I had any interest in and The Two Towers preview alone will probably make me go see it a couple of times more to feed my addiction. I hope the preview shows Ents. Hoom hoom.
posted by bargle at 4:59 PM on January 25, 2002

Hey-- it works for the DVD market, so why not the theater itself? I've got several first-edition DVDs of movies that were re-released later with a bunch of extras. Very frustrating.

I'll be right behind you, muckster.
posted by bschoate at 5:03 PM on January 25, 2002

the only problem i had with the movie was it seemed to run about 20 minutes long. If they were planning on chopping the extranious false-ending, I'd be all up for it. Although I haven't paid to see a movie twice since E.T.

As for the appeal of "previews" aka "commercials," i dont get it. just show me the movie, damnit.
posted by tsarfan at 5:04 PM on January 25, 2002

I picked up a copy of the centenary edition of LotR last weekend and have been reading it voraciously. The farther I get into the books, the greater my disappointment with the film: the countless dewy-eyed scenes of hobbits hugging, the incredibly short shrift given to Rivendell and Lothlorien, and most inexcusably, the almost total absence of song and legend. Peter Jackson got the look of the tale, but he didn't get the myth or backstory at all. I guess that I shouldn't be surprised that a guy who was doing flesh-eating zombie comedy flicks a couple of years ago would be hard-pressed to capture the magic of the books.

Maybe a lot of this will turn up in the extended DVD version. I hope so, because I'm sure not going to plunk down another 8 bucks just to see a preview of the next movie. I'd cast my vote also for a special longer edition released to the theaters...
posted by MrBaliHai at 5:15 PM on January 25, 2002

I agree, MrBaliHai...THinking about that as a left, i wish that they had included much more from the book. But, if they tried to make the movie include everything in the books, the first installment alone would have been 9 hours long.
posted by jmd82 at 5:49 PM on January 25, 2002

Maybe now they can caption and describe the f<asterisk><asterisk><asterisk>er. It's made a quarter-billion bucks, yet New Line, which has never done CC & A.D. for a theatrical movie, won't even pony up the $12K it costs to make the thing accessible.

Colour me miffed, and biased.
posted by joeclark at 5:49 PM on January 25, 2002

I would like my money back from seeing this movie, especially if they release a modified version to theaters this soon.
posted by howa2396 at 5:57 PM on January 25, 2002

Ugh. I can't believe this. Now I'm going to have to go another 3 hours without using the urinals. Why couldn't they have put an intermission? Why torture us so?
posted by geoff. at 6:30 PM on January 25, 2002

What's an intermission?

posted by Mars Saxman at 6:41 PM on January 25, 2002

I believe Star Wars and Back To The Future did similar things. No big deal.
posted by benh57 at 8:29 PM on January 25, 2002

I must confess: I haven't seen this movie.

I await condemnation.
posted by aramaic at 8:33 PM on January 25, 2002

I've seen the film twice, and probably would go again if they did add new footage. I'm thinking about going to see it again, anyhow, now that I've finished reading The Fellowship of the Ring--I will say this about the movie: it's actually got me reading Tolkien--something I ws never really interested in before. Started with The Hobbit, and now I'm halfway through The Two Towers--the interesting thing is that I really don't like the poetry in the books at all, so I've been skipping it, so I didn't realize that the songs and poems and stuff were missing from the movie. It seems to me, as a non-fanatic about the book, that Jackson's editorial choices, in terms of streamlining the plot and compressing a lot of the action, do make sense.

Film is a different medium than writing is, and while each medium has its strengths and weaknesses, they're both quite different, and when converting from one form to another, changes are going to have to be made; especially when you're dealing with a book as complicated and complex as LotR. While perhaps some comparison between the two media are appropriate, in my opinion, it's certainly not the end all and be all in terms of determining the overall value or worth of a work. The movie should stand on its own, and for the most part, it does. Or at least I think it does.
posted by eilatan at 8:51 PM on January 25, 2002

if they tried to make the movie include everything in the books, the first installment alone would have been 9 hours long.

And they probably *still* wouldn't have an intermission.

I see no problem with adding a "Two Towers" preview. One of the main complaints I've been hearing about "FOTR" is that it has no ending. The addition could alleviate that.

And it'd give me an excuse to go see it for a fourth time.
posted by diddlegnome at 9:29 PM on January 25, 2002

tsarfan: Although I haven't paid to see a movie twice since E.T.

To my undying shame, I paid to see White Nights four times; "But what a pathetic man." Although (perhaps in my defense) I did see Star Wars more than that.

eilatan: I really don't like the poetry in the books at all, so I've been skipping it

Anything in italics, skip. It's the only way.
posted by kirkaracha at 10:13 PM on January 25, 2002

A friend works at Weta Digital, the outfit doing the effects for the Rings movies, and they don't know dick about when the next trailer is coming out or anything like that. They're relying on the net to find stuff like that out!

MrBaliHai : check out Jackson's Heavenly Creatures -- I think you'll be surprised by its maturity and sophistication. And not a flesh-eating zombie in sight! I also don't remember any zombies in Forgotten Silver either.
posted by John Shaft at 1:02 AM on January 26, 2002

But if I go and see fotr again, that will be nine hours of my life gone!
posted by eoz at 2:36 AM on January 26, 2002

I'm all for the studios modifying the final reel -- after the film proper has run its course, of course -- during a movie's run; mixin' it up is a *good* thing, IMO. Hollywood did that with a couple animated movies in recent years, didn't they? Showing a different mix of outtakes after the movie ended, from time to time?

Why not? It's all good. (Although I agree, BTW, if any movie ever screamed out for an intermission, it's this one.)

re: Criticism of FOTR -- did anyone else read Ebert's review? While virtually every other reviewer (at least it seems like that) was raving enthusiastically about Peter Jackson's "perfect translation" of Tolkien's work, Roger's was one of the few dissenting voices -- and his argument strikes me as an informed, persuasive one. Anyone familiar with the original books (unlike me) want to comment on it?
posted by verdezza at 3:09 AM on January 26, 2002

Anyone familiar with the original books (unlike me) want to comment on it?

Oy, this is a heady debate. It's important to view the books and movies as sepoerate entities, simply because it's almost univerally agreed upon (in my experience) that translating the books to film is impossible. Ebert is correct in many respects -- people have been imagining the books for decades, and no movie is going to match that. But all things considered, Peter Jackson has made an amazing film. The characters are well-developed (the thing I feared most that would be lacking), and though it is true that the action is focused on more than it was in the books, I think that a books whose scenes were commensurate in relative duration to their counterparts in the book woud be a piece of crap. The books are organized in a fashion that does not lend itself well to film -- the fact that the movies ended up so good and still carrying most (though not all) of the sentiments of the book speaks worlds for the talent of the people working on it.
posted by j.edwards at 4:09 AM on January 26, 2002

I'm going to see it today with my wife. We only go out once a month (babysitting's a bear) so I hope it's worth it. At three hours we are going to have to sneak in some major snacks.
posted by mecran01 at 5:43 AM on January 26, 2002

eilatan: I skipped the poetry the first time that I read the books too (25 years ago). But now I see that they are integral to the telling of the tale and provide a lot of the lore and history of Middle Earth that's lacking in the narrative. Tolkein was a philologist who wanted to create an entire language and philosophy of thought for an imaginary world. Feudal, medieval societies like the ones of Middle Earth transferred knowledge and mores largely through the medium of song and epic poetry. I certainly didn't expect Jackson to leave all of it in there, but to leave it out of the film entirely feels like a cheat to me.

Shaft: I've seen Heavenly Creatures and it was indeed a very sophisticated and well-made film, but I don't see much of it's influence in LotR other than beautiful castle sets. The film really only comes to life in the scenes with Saruman and the Uruk-Hai and the Balrog which have a lot more in common with "Dead-Alive". Also, note that the Uruk-Hai are cannibals with a particular taste for manflesh. I kept waiting for Gandalf to attack Saruman Kung-fu style and yell, "I kick ass for the Lord!"

Anyone else start making Matrix jokes when Elrond was onscreen?

"Hmm, Mr. Underhill...or should I say Frodo?"

j.edwards: I have to disagree with you strongly on character development. With the exception of Frodo, Sam, and possibly Boromir, the other members of the fellowship are given almost no backstory or motivation. Gandalf is supposed to be somewhat of a cipher, but no hint of why Legolamb or Gimlet are on the quest or where they came from is given. The character of Aragorn seemed weak, befuddled, and utterly unkingly and the other hobbits are strictly there for comedy relief.
posted by MrBaliHai at 6:50 AM on January 26, 2002

Heh, I didn't notice that the guy playing Elrond was the same as Agent smith untill the guy I was with pointed it out to me. After he did, I couldn't stop thinking about it :P
posted by delmoi at 9:49 AM on January 26, 2002

I wanted to like the LOTR movie, but all the distracting sleight-of-hand camera tricks to make actors playing Hobbits appear much shorter than the other characters kept giving me a headache. It held my interest, I will see the next two installments, but it wasn't very entertaining, all told.
posted by Ben Grimm at 4:54 PM on January 26, 2002

Heh, I didn't notice that the guy playing Elrond was the same as Agent smith untill the guy I was with pointed it out to me. After he did, I couldn't stop thinking about it.

I've seen so many people comment on this, could someone explain to me what the hell the big deal is supposed to be?? "Oh, my God! This actor was in another movie before this one! I feel faint! Someone call the press!" I mean, seriously -- someone? Anyone? Clue me in?
posted by webmutant at 9:03 PM on January 26, 2002

Similar to fining out that James Earl Jones was both Darth Vader and the "This..... is CNN" guy.

You can't hear that spot without hearing the rasping breathing.
"This..(huuuugh-puuuuthh) is CNN."
posted by dong_resin at 3:38 AM on January 27, 2002

Shit, did I type James Earl Ray?
posted by dong_resin at 3:40 AM on January 27, 2002

If you think that the Elrond/Agent Smith relation is a hoot, rent "Priscilla: Queen of the Desert" and imagine either character in drag.
posted by cheaily at 5:12 AM on January 27, 2002

I just wanna point out that this news is nothing new. Even before the movie was released, I read that New Line was planning to add a trailer to the end of it. The reason they didn't do it right away is because they knew some fans wouldn't want it to be spoiled for them.
posted by Tin Man at 12:44 PM on January 27, 2002

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