The Hobbit hits American theaters tomorrow, so impress your friends with this Middle Earth trivia!
More than thirteen years after it first began with The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring, the Middle Earth saga finally draws to a close tomorrow when The Hobbit‘s final installment, The Battle of the Five Armies hits theatres in America.
To commemorate this momentous occasion, we’ve compiled a list of ten facts that you didn’t know about the Middle Earth films. Or did know. This is an article, not a test. Either way, prepare for your midnight screenings by brushing up on your knowledge so you can impress your friends in line for the main event!
After the latter’s death in Fellowship of the Ring, Aragorn can be seen wearing Boromir’s gauntlets in the concluding two parts to the Lord of the Rings trilogy.
2. Windy city
Osgiliath (the city Faramir takes Sam and Frodo to in The Two Towers) was made entirely from polystyrene, and on one occasion the set was blown away by strong winds.
3. ‘Lord of the Rings’: The Two Movies
Especially with the ever-expanding Hobbit trilogy, Peter Jackson has come under fire from fans for dragging out the Middle Earth story over too many films. But he wasn’t always the one adding entries, as he originally pitched Lord of the Rings as two films. New Line suggested that there be three films – one for every book.
4. There and Back Again
Peter Jackson didn’t actually finish filming Return of the King until four months after the film’s release (and one month after it swept the Oscars). This was because he was shooting material for his now famous extended editions.
5. The Black Gate(s)
The entrance to Mordor is called The Black Gate – yet in the films it consists of two doorways. This is all down to a typo in an early script which was handed to the art department.
6. The strong silent type
Stephen Hunter’s dwarf Bombur is the only one of Thorin’s company who has still not had a line of dialogue. The character is limited to pants and whimpers in An Unexpected Journey and The Desolation of Smaug. Let’s just hope he’s a bit chattier in the concluding part – as Allen even had lessons in Northern Irish dialect to prepare for the role.
7. Blink and You’ll Miss It
Orlando Bloom’s Legolas is often mocked for his habit of staring into the middle distance. But fans are right to poke fun at him – the character has only blinked once per trilogy (at Gandalf’s horse in Lord of the Rings, and when he’s injured in The Hobbit).
8. Facing the music
While composing the soundtrack of the original Lord of the Rings trilogy, Howard Shore was at one point writing music at a pace of seven minutes a day – just to stay on schedule!
Once upon a time, The Beatles tried to adapt the Lord of the Rings films, eyeing Stanley Kubrick to direct. Paul McCartney would have been Frodo, Ringo Starr would appear as Sam, George Harrison was set to play Gandalf, and John Lennon wanted to be Gollum. Both Tolkien and Kubrick refused.
In creating Smaug’s lair, the production team had to use so much gold paint that they nearly exhausted both New Zealand and Australia’s stores. In fact, they used so much that they also had to import more from Germany.