LORD OF THE RINGS
The conclusion of Peter Jackson's version of JRR Tolkien's 'Lord of the Rings'
trilogy had not yet come to pass. While most of us were looking forward to
seeing the third film, we had the chance to go visit something that we had not
seen before and will probably never see again in this magnitude, the chance to
view the props and meet some of the actors from the film trilogy itself.
The exhibition of the props first started out in PJ's hometown of Wellington.
Supported by New Line, the exhibition got so many visitors to it that a decision
was made quite quickly to take it round the globe, for people all over who
wanted to view the exhibition. Some people hadn't even seen either the first or
the second film, but this didn't stop people from going to visit.
The exhibition's first move away from Wellington was to the Science Museum in
London, and this was where I got to see it for the first time. But I wasn't
along in seeing it, I was accompanied by my girlfriend, Paula, who I'd only
known for a couple of months or so at that stage and this was one of our early
dates out together.
So, on the day itself, we met up at the nearby railway station at around 12pm or
so (after some minor hassles with the trains) and wandered up to the museum,
which wasn't so far away. Both of us had been to the Science Museum before many
years ago, when we were on school trips, as the museums themselves were popular
destinations for these. We arrived a bit early for the times on our tickets so
we got a couple of hot drinks from the nearby cafe in the museum. After
wandering around some of the exhibits in the entrance hall, it was time to go
into the LOTR exhibition itself.
We admittedly weren't sure what to expect when we first went in, but the overall
dark areas of the exhibition set the scene very well. There was lots of
information on display relating to the making of the films, with some amusing
bits included about mishaps during takes.
There were a lot of interesting features there relating to different aspects of
making the films. One was using the camera trick used in the first film, where
Frodo is placed next to Gandalf in Gandalf's horse-drawn carriage. To make Frodo
look smaller, he was sat further away from the camera, while Gandalf was much
closer. With the two halves of the picture merged together, it made for an
excellent effect. It was possible to sit in Gandalf's carriage with other people
and view the perspectives from different angles. This technique was called
There was an amusing short film about the makeup stage for Lurtz, a new leader
of the Orcs who's existence was down to Peter Jackson. He was played by a guy
called Lawrence Makoare, who is very tall and is an interesting guy to meet even
in real life. One of the funniest parts of it was when some of the makeup was
being applied to him, because it took so long to make him up completely as
Lurtz, there were times when he'd be sleeping (and snoring !) while the process
was being carried out.
The exhibition generally was very interesting. Even though it was a Friday when
Paula and I made the trip down to it, it was surprising to see just how many
people there were there. While it's true that the show itself was not jampacked
totally, it goes to show just how popular the exhibition itself was. People who
we spoke to there were mainly film-goers who had seen the first 2 films, but
there were some for whom LOTR was a first cinema experience for them for many
Felice for Alive2004