Would JRR Tolkien approved the films

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Elfstone
Posts: 1502

Would JRR Tolkien approved the films

Post#101 » Thu Jan 01, 1970 12:00 am

In The Letters Of J.R.R. Tolkien, there is some really interesting information in regards to what Tolkien’s thoughts about TLOTR being made into a film actually were. On September 4th, 1957, Tolkien was visited by representatives of the American company, which was interested in making an animated film of TLOTR. Tolkien was then given a ‘treatment’ of the film, which he agreed to read.

Although American was at that time considering making an animated film, Tolkien’s thoughts on their film treatment of his book TLOTR are important because they give a massive amount of insight into what he deemed to be important, and critical if anyone were ever to make a film of TLOTR (and also because he mentions needing money, which pertains to the eventual selling of the film rights). For anyone interested in what Tolkien’s actual thoughts were about a film script, and what was, and was not important to him, I highly suggest getting Letters, and reading his views, and criticisms on pages 261, 266, 267, and pages 270-277 (where Tolkien really elaborates in great detail what would be critical to the making of TLOTR into a film). I don’t have a scanner here at the house, otherwise I would scan the pages for all to see, but trust me, if you’re really interested in his thoughts about TLOTR being made into a film, you will find this information extremely fascinating.

All in all (brace yourself Ross), after reading the pages I mentioned in Letters, I’m prepared to say that Tolkien overall would have been fairly pleased with PJ’s translation of his book into film. There are definitely some things he wouldn’t have liked, or been happy with (which is how I feel too), but believe it or not, PJ has adequately addressed most of Tolkien’s major concerns.
:elf:
"I would have the Ring-bearer bring the crown to me, and let Mithrandir set it upon my head, if he will; for he has been the mover of all that has been accomplished, and this is his victory." Elessar

Samwisegamgee
Posts: 607

Would JRR Tolkien approved the films

Post#102 » Thu Jan 01, 1970 12:00 am

JRRT sold the movie rights in the sixties because he had money trouble.


I know Tolkien sold movie rights for that movie Zimmerman made, did Christopher Tolkien have to sell movie rights again for PJ? How does this whole movie right thing work? (sorry I've probably got it all wrong because I know nothing about this) How much influence did the Tolkien's have on PJ, were they allowed to have any?

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Peredhil
Posts: 2167

Would JRR Tolkien approved the films

Post#103 » Thu Jan 01, 1970 12:00 am

I know Tolkien sold movie rights for that movie Zimmerman made, did Christopher Tolkien have to sell movie rights again for PJ? How does this whole movie right thing work?
Christopher, as the heir of the Tolkien Estate, gets everything, including the movie rights.
A mind full of fire and a fistful of steel.

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grondmaster
Posts: 25451

Would JRR Tolkien approved the films

Post#104 » Thu Jan 01, 1970 12:00 am

Christopher, as the heir of the Tolkien Estate, gets everything, including the movie rights.
I believe he is only one of the heirs though.
'Share and enjoy'

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rednell
Posts: 1798

Would JRR Tolkien approved the films

Post#105 » Thu Jan 01, 1970 12:00 am

Christopher, as the heir of the Tolkien Estate, gets everything, including the movie rights.


I don't believe Tolkien Estate gets anything from the movie or merchandizing, only the books. Of course the movies have increased the readership and the number of books sold so they still stand to make a postThreadIDy sum.
I do have documentation to support this, but at the moment I am preparing for an exam. I will give a nice long explanation by the end of the week. :D

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PlasticSquirrel
Posts: 3577

Would JRR Tolkien approved the films

Post#106 » Thu Jan 01, 1970 12:00 am

Christopher, as the heir of the Tolkien Estate, gets everything, including the movie rights.


Nope, cos they'd already been sold to Saul Zaentz, who therefore owns them outright. Same as Paul McCartney had to buy back the rights to the Beatles Music from Michael Jackson a few years back. New Line had to approach Saul Zaentz and buy them off of him. Once you've sold the movie rights, they are gone, and there's not a thing you can do about it.
http://www.plasticsquirrel.co.uk for all your bizarre music and musings needs

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Tyrhael
Posts: 1187

Would JRR Tolkien approved the films

Post#107 » Thu Jan 01, 1970 12:00 am

I think he might have approved, though not liked some areas. I certainly think he hoped a movie would stay true to the books, since he felt possessive about his creation...It was his precioussss. Also, I think he wanted people to imagine Middle-Earth in diferent ways; everyone who reads it sees it differently. The movie just shows it for them, and ruins their ideas on how certain scenes looked. Though I hope/think he would have approved of the immense detail and effort put into the production, and the scenery/landscape.

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TomBombadillo
Posts: 2746

Would JRR Tolkien approved the films

Post#108 » Thu Jan 01, 1970 12:00 am

I really don't think JRR Tolkien would have liked any of the films made of LOTR so far, nor any of the films that might be made in the future.

Professor Tolkien loved imagination, he liked to leave some open spaces for the reader to fill in with his own imagination. In his head, Tolkien had a certain image of every character, but in the mind of the reader those images might be very different. I imagine Treebeard as a large, thick, very rimpled and leafy old oak, but maybe professor Tolkien had a totally different view on him. Now, with the films out, I find it quite difficult to get the "old" characters back to my head, the ones I imagined when I read the book for the first time. When I think of Frodo now, I think of Elyah Wood. I have absolutely nothing against Elyah Wood, or any of the other actors in the films, but there's nothing left to imagine now. It feels like we know what Frodo looks like now, but in fact it's only what Peter Jackson thinks Frodo looks like.

That is why I don't think JRR Tolkien would like any movie made of LOTR. It is his story, his own world, and the reader can do with that world whatever he wants. No matter who makes a film of the book, it would never be perfect. The professor preferred to leave certain things to the imagination. And so do I, now that I come to think of it. nn[Edited on 13/8/2003 by TomBombadillo]
Denial is not a river in Africa.

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Ross
Posts: 2147

Would JRR Tolkien approved the films

Post#109 » Thu Jan 01, 1970 12:00 am

All in all (brace yourself Ross), after reading the pages I mentioned in Letters, I’m prepared to say that Tolkien overall would have been fairly pleased with PJ’s translation of his book into film. There are definitely some things he wouldn’t have liked, or been happy with (which is how I feel too), but believe it or not, PJ has adequately addressed most of Tolkien’s major concerns
Can I just say one thing. Horse Manure! He doesn't address his concerns. If anything, he corrects his conviction that someone will always butcher and maim for money. As is the case with the evil one.

(Grondy merely fixed the errant ASCII numbers)nn[Edited on 18/8/2003 by Grondmaster]
Sod off I'm busy!

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Elfstone
Posts: 1502

Would JRR Tolkien approved the films

Post#110 » Thu Jan 01, 1970 12:00 am

Can I just say one thing. Horse Manure! He doesn't address his concerns. If anything, he corrects his conviction that someone will always butcher and maim for money. As is the case with the evil one.


Well what can I say; I certainly didn’t expect you to agree with me! However, with all due respect, I disagree. I still contend that Tolkien does address a lot of his major concerns, specifically in pages 270-277 of Letters where he does nothing but address his major concerns of Zimmerman's film script, which I feel offer significant insight into the things he deemed important, and certain guidelines to follow if you will.

The biggest thing that Tolkien cared about if someone were to make a film was that whomever was making the film paid great respect to his original story, and I feel that for the most part, PJ has tried very hard to do that. Lets not forget that at the end of the day, New Line has the final say when it comes to the theatrical releases, and in a lot of ways PJ is sort of handcuffed by them. I think if PJ really had it all his way, all of the LOTR films would have been 4 to 4.5 hours in length. TTT IMHO moved too far away from the original source for my liking, but I lay that blame on New Line.

The SEE’s DVD’s are positive proof that PJ has gone to great lengths to try and stay true to the original story as much as possible, and that he has filmed a ton of material straight from the books (a true sign that the director is paying respect to the original source). Again, it’s NL that’s not allowing the better versions of the films to be seen in theaters. Not only has PJ filmed, and incorporated a great deal of material straight from the books, but he’s also managed to include elements of The Silmarillion, The Hobbit, and he’s even included some stuff straight out of the appendices (which is a great deal more than many others would or could have done). As I’ve said here and other places many times, I’m far from happy with some of the changes that have been made, and I was particularly displeased with the theatrical version of TTT, but I do feel that overall PJ has shown a great deal of respect for the original story, and I think Tolkien overall would have been somewhat pleased by that.
:elf:

"I would have the Ring-bearer bring the crown to me, and let Mithrandir set it upon my head, if he will; for he has been the mover of all that has been accomplished, and this is his victory." Elessar

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