SILMARLLION FILMS - A TRILOGY IDEA

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Felagund
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SILMARLLION FILMS - A TRILOGY IDEA

Post#1 » Wed Jul 08, 2009 9:02 am

Everything from the Music of the Ainur to the start of the Siege of Angband should be covered and condensed into a 15 minure intro to the first movie, leaving many details out to draw the viewer’s interests and be discovered as the films progress eg Finrod and Amarie love story which can be shown as a flashback in movie 1.

Movie 1 – The Union of Maedhros
The first movie proper after the intro should begin with the Battle of Sudden flame and the death of Fingolfin in his fight with Morgoth. This can then lead perfectly on too the Beren and Luthien. We have Movie 1. In this film the relationship between Beren and Hurin and his brother can be made more significant, as if they actually are friends. This is because a movie cannot have whole random lists of characters with no relationship to one another. The first film will end with Luthien defeating Sauron and Hurin and Hour leaving for the Battle of Unnumbered Tears. The timeframe between these two events can be condensed and Turin and Tuor can be made a little older than in the book (instead of being just born older children eg 11 or 13) and be visible characters so that the end of this film can lead onto the second with continuity of main characters. Thetitle of this movie can be explained by the fact that it is Beren and Luthien’s exploits which lead to the Union of Maedhros and the Battle of Unnumbered Tears being possible. (Sauron can be the antagonist of this film).

Movie 2 - The Curse of Morgoth

Movie two should begin with Beren and Luthien stealing the Silmaril from Morgoth and the remainder of that tale. It will deal with the tragedy of Unnumbered Tears and will follow the story of the two sets of cousins Turin and Tuor, continually shifting back to Hurin sitting on Morgoth's seat having to watch his family being torn apart. It will end with Tuor reaching Gondolin and Turin Nargothrond where he meets Finduilas and it seems that the tragedy of Morgoth’s curse is broken. Tuor on the other hand meets Idril and the envy of Maeglin can be introduced. It will end for Beren and Luthien with their death and Luthien going to try and save him. She is given the choice to become mortal. What will she do? Luthien chooses to become mortal and returns to the earth with Beren. They settle in Ossiriand and Dior is born. This movie will deal with Morgoth trying to stemmy the progress of the Protagonists but being unable to, he is even fooled by Beren and Luthien who steal the silmaril from him!

Movie 3 – The War of the Jewels

Movie will begin again with a vision of Hurin still sitting on Morgoth's seat and will complete the tales of the Children of Hurin, the Fall of Gondolin and Beren and Luthien. A time lapse of a few years since the last film will have taken place with Tuor in Gondolin, Turin in Nargothrond and Luthien and Beren in Ossiriand. It will include the Sack of Menegroth, Fall of Gondolin and the Children of Hurin tragedy etc. It will have Beren and Dior routing the Dwarves, Gondolin falling and Tuor and his family safely escaping. Dior will be crowned King of Doriath. It will show his death and the fall of Doriath but the survival of Elwing who will meet her future husband Earendil. The film can end with Earendil leaving on his ship and finding Valinor and petinioning to the Valar on behalf of Beren and Luthien, thus completeing the quest set up by his forefathers and Elwing's (Beren and Luthien, Tuor, Dior). In the final sequences of the movie there can be images of the final battle and the sinking of Beleriand, where Sauron can surface for another apparence.

Now I know that Puritans will hate this condensing of time and slight rejigging of events - but it may be necessary for the film to work.

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Beren
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SILMARLLION FILMS - A TRILOGY IDEA

Post#2 » Fri Jul 10, 2009 11:24 am

So it looks like you're trying to have all three stories kind of going on at once. (the three being 1. Beren and Luthien, 2. Turin, 3. Tuor) Of course, you don't have them happening at exactly the same time, but close enough.

Why do this when you can separate them into individual movies? The timeline would still be mainly on target (the stories mostly happened back-to-back), and people wouldn't get confused with all the plots.

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Felagund
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SILMARLLION FILMS - A TRILOGY IDEA

Post#3 » Fri Jul 10, 2009 5:22 pm

IN MY POV the problem is continuity of characters. I just can't see three movies involving three (largrely) different sets of main characters being commercially viable. But I am fallible and would like to be proven wrong as I love the Silmarillion.

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Beren
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SILMARLLION FILMS - A TRILOGY IDEA

Post#4 » Sat Jul 11, 2009 9:22 am

In the book, B&L comes first. Then there is the chapter about the Battle of Unnumbered Tears, where Huor dies and Hurin is taken captive. That sets up the tale of Turin to happen. Then after Turin and his sister die, Hurin is set free, and he finds Morwen and she dies. Then comes the Ruin of Doriath (that whole ordeal with the Dwarves). It ends with Beren and Luthien dying, and Dior, their son, receiving the Silmaril. The sons of Feanor then attack him, and he dies, but his daughter takes the Silmaril to the sea. Then comes the tale of Tuor.
So the hardest thing would be to communicate the family trees to the audience. The relationship between Hurin and Huor, the fact that Tuor is Huor's son, and Turin is Hurin's son...the fact that Dior is Beren's son, and Elwing is Dior's daughter. This all must be communicated because the three stories span several generations.

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Gandalfs Beard
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SILMARLLION FILMS - A TRILOGY IDEA

Post#5 » Sat Jul 11, 2009 3:56 pm

Part of the problem with filming the Silmarillion is all of the characters dying ;) . People really don't like Tragedies for the most part. And as so much of the Silmarillion is tragedy, that, more than anything, is the biggest hurdle to overcome and making movies from it that are commercially viable.

GB

egorjosh2
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SILMARLLION FILMS - A TRILOGY IDEA

Post#6 » Sat Jul 11, 2009 5:09 pm

I love your idea and think it would make an amazing series of movies, dare I say more sophisticated and beautiful than even the LOTR films. I agree that having all the stories going simultaneously but showing how they are all connected is a great way to do it. To have 3 largely different stories makes it way too episodic when what we want is an epic story that all connects somehow where we can get involved in a lot of different journeys. It worked in TTT and ROTK so why not here? As far as tragedy not commercially viable, I beg to differ. What is the highest grossing movie of all time? A tragic love story. (Sorry to compare Middle Earth with a certain sinking ship.) People like to see people die in movies because nothing is more emotional that death. Death is the lifeblood of drama and the Silmarillion is drama not an action story. It has big battles and heroes but at its core its about the frailty of people, be they Elves or Men and price we all pay for the mistakes of our forefathers. There is redemption in our actions but that comes with a price as well.

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Beren
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SILMARLLION FILMS - A TRILOGY IDEA

Post#7 » Sat Jul 11, 2009 10:16 pm

I really don't know what the common people want, since all of my friends are very strange people. I know one girl, a Tolkien nut like me, who said (and I paraphrase), "Tolkien tragedy is the most beautiful thing ever written." There is just something about Tolkien tragedy that is so utterly stunning and beautiful that the horribleness of it just adds to its beauty. I don't think the English language can rightly describe it.
But I can understand that the general public could get depressed if three films came out and only one of them (B&L) had a reasonably good ending.

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Gandalfs Beard
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SILMARLLION FILMS - A TRILOGY IDEA

Post#8 » Sun Jul 12, 2009 1:05 am

Titanic is really the exception that proves the rule. When I tried to figure out why the last Matrix film did so poorly despite it's Mythopoetic brilliance, most people said it was because Neo died. The second problem was that people didn't understand the complex mythology and philosophy behind it. This is precisely the same problem the Silmarillion would face in a film adaptation.

I'm not saying it couldn't be done, but it would be a labour of love as the expense would outweigh the financial benefit. And as a Tolkien fan, I concur with Beren that Tolkien writes beautiful Arthurian Romantic Tragedy. But even I find a lot of the Silmarillion depressing :roll: .

GB

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Show
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SILMARLLION FILMS - A TRILOGY IDEA

Post#9 » Mon Jul 13, 2009 8:19 am

I'll make this post regard tragedy only.

I'll start with the Matrix comment.
I would argue the bad part wasn't so much that Neo died. That made snese and seemed like it should happen. I like it. But what the hell was up with Trinity's death scene. I wanted to reach out and choke her so she would hurry up and die already. It was like the writer wanted to twist our heartstrings with her death. But kept on trying to twist more after the plug should have been pulled. And the speech just made it worse. All the whining that the first time she died, she didn't have the time to tell him... Tell him what already! Out with it woman!

Titanic: Wonderful point. Tragedy can and has been commercially viable. I still just like the ship sinking, but whatever floats you boat... or sinks it.

Not Titanic: I would have used a different tragedy to make my point. Romeo and Juliet. You can use the same words and add guns instead of swords and still make money in the theater! The reach of this tragic tale of star crossed lovers is seen, read, heard, loved, and reinvented time and time again. There even are great similarities between them and Berend & Luthien.

I would argue that tragedy can be just as commercially succesful as action. If, and only if, it is done well. Granted action can flop when done poorly as well.

The hardest hurdle I think these proposed Silmarillion films would have is not so much that they are a tragedy. But that they are tragedy so closly associated with such an epic action/adventure set as LotR. I personally believe that a large audience would have loved these films for what they are, except they will enter the theater expecting something else.

Expectations when you enter the theater have such a large impact on how much you enjoy the film. Between readers expectations, LotR filmgoers only expectations, and everyone's expectations of the current handling of Tolkien work, These movies would have quite a high bar to reach. Maybe if they wait a decade or so first.

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Gandalfs Beard
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SILMARLLION FILMS - A TRILOGY IDEA

Post#10 » Tue Jul 14, 2009 2:24 am

I think you have put your finger on it Show. The majority of Fantasy and Action fans don't like Tragedy (I should know, as I often share those sentiments myself :roll: ). Whereas, for some reason, Romance and Realism fans seem drawn to Romantic Tragedies.

The exception for me is Pan's Labyrinth--I can only handle the Tragic Aspect because I believe the Fantasy element is more real than the Realist element; in which case the little girl doesn't actually die but returns to her rightful realm :cry: . Still, awfully sad though. I cried my eyes out in that film (I am kind of a sap for "Weepies" though). And Sophie's Choice, I wil never ever watch that again, and I wish I had never seen it. It was just too painful.

One has to be really careful to strike the right tone in film. Too strong of a Tragedy can undermine the whole film. There is just enough Tragedy at the beginning of X-Men to charge the film with emotional resonance (similar to the scene in Sophie's Choice), but it was balanced much better by the Fantastic elements.

Finally, as much as I love every Matrix movie (and Animations), I agree: the second death scene of Trinity was Overdone. They should have dialed it back a bit. Still, it's a minor flaw, and not enough to ruin what would have been an otherwise perfect film (imo ;) ).

In conclusion; if the Fantasy elements of The Silmarillion are made the most prominent, it would be possible to pull it off enough for someone like me. But I still think it would be likely to underperform at the box-office. A shame really, because I would love to see it onscreen. But maybe someday it will be done simply for the sake of Art by someone who doesn't care about box-office.

GB

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