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Tag: Peter Jackson (1-10 of 29)

'The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey' was 2013's most pirated movie

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Congratulations are in order, sorta, for Peter Jackson and his Hobbit team. According to TorrentFreak’s annual list, the first film in their trilogy was downloaded well over eight million times in 2013, making it the year’s most pirated movie.

It wasn’t, however, a runaway victory. An Unexpected Journey was followed closely by Django Unchained, which has an estimated download count of 8.1 million — just 300,000 fewer than The Hobbit, even though The Hobbit‘s worldwide box office take was more than twice what Django made. Two blockbuster sequels — Fast and Furious 6 and Iron Man 3 — plus a surprisingly high-performing Oscar nominee (Silver Linings Playbook) round out the top 5.

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Martin Freeman says farewell to Bilbo Baggins -- PHOTO

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Here’s a bittersweet bit of second-breakfast dessert: A few hours ago, Peter Jackson revealed that Martin Freeman had just shot his last scene as Bilbo Baggins.

This marks the end of the Sherlock actor’s two-and-a-half-year journey to and from Bag End — and nearly the end of Jackson’s own Tolkien immersion as well. “We have said goodbye to our elves, humans, wizards and now the hobbit. We now enter our final 2 weeks of pick-ups,” Jackson writes on Facebook. The good bad hairy news: From here on out, he adds, “it’s wall to wall dwarves.” (Dwarfs are very upsetting.)

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See a pic of Ian McKellen's last day as Gandalf

Ian McKellen has spent fifteen years playing Gandalf the Grey (and then the White) – one of the major character links between the Lord of the Rings trilogy and the Hobbit. Today, he filmed his last scenes in the role. READ FULL STORY

'The Hobbit': Five things you should know about 48 frames per second

Unless you’ve been hiding out in a hobbit-hole or held captive by a cave troll, you’re undoubtedly aware that director Peter Jackson’s long-awaited return to Middle-earth, The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, is opening next week. And you’re probably also aware that Jackson shot the film in a new format, 48 frames per second, which has kicked up a fair bit of fuss among early reviewers, not all of it positive. But what does 48 frames per second even mean? Is it actually a better way to experience the film? Here are five things you should know before buying your ticket. READ FULL STORY

This week's cover: Go inside 'The Hobbit'

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If you think all of the amped-up anticipation and feverish speculation surrounding Peter Jackson’s long-awaited return to Middle-earth with The Hobbit has been intense — well, just imagine being Martin Freeman. From the moment he was cast as the reluctant hobbit hero Bilbo Baggins in Jackson’s epic adaptation of J.R.R. Tolkien’s beloved children’s book, the British actor has been doing his best to shut out all of the noise for his sanity’s sake. Going on-line to eavesdrop on the fans’ expectations and armchair-quarterbacking of The Hobbit is “a suicide mission,” he tells EW. “If I read one bad thing about me — it can be one person’s opinion in Idaho — I’m like, ‘Jesus, why does everyone hate me?’ ” he says. “If you read four of those, you think, ‘Everyone in the solar system hates me!’ Then even if you read 80 people saying, ‘I think he’s wonderful and I really want to f— him,’ you’re still thinking, ‘But that person in Idaho…’ ” He pauses and adds drily, “In short, I don’t really seek out the Hobbit stuff.”

With the Dec. 14 release of the first installment, An Unexpected Journey, finally almost here, this week’s issue of EW goes deep into “the Hobbit stuff,” exploring the film’s long, difficult road to the big screen and the critical, sometimes controversial creative decisions Jackson has made along the way — most notably, his surprising decision to turn the planned two-film adaptation into a full trilogy. That decision took even Freeman aback at first. “At first, I must say, I was like, ‘Why?’ ” the actor says, adding that he quickly came around. “You kind of think, ‘I’ve already put this much of my life into two movies. What am I going to do now – not put it into three?’ In for a penny, in for a pound.” READ FULL STORY

Learn airplane safety from elves, hobbits, and orcs, courtesy of Air New Zealand

Forget giant eagles. Citizens of Middle Earth have stepped into the future and are now flying aboard 777s. Or at least they are in Air New Zealand’s new in-flight safety video, “An Unexpected Briefing.” The video, which was created in anticipation of the December release of The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, starts screening on Air New Zealand flights this week.

In the video, the elven flight attendant starts with a message we’re used to hearing in safety videos (“Even if you flight with us often, be sure to keep a sharp eye on the briefing”) but aren’t used to obeying. But this video is different — orcs, hobbits, Ringwraiths, dwarves, and elves have a way of boosting entertainment value.

Check out the video below to see Peter Jackson put on the one ring, some gorgeous Aragorn-like hair whip back in the breeze, a Gollum cameo courtesy of Weta, and an obligatory quoting of Gandalf’s most airplane-applicable line. Dean O’Gorman, who plays Fili in The Hobbit, and J.R.R. Tolkien’s great-grandsons Mike and Royd also make an appearance. READ FULL STORY

Who should direct new 'Star Wars' movie? Christopher Nolan? Joss Whedon? J.J. Abrams?

Breathe, Star Wars fans, breathe. Maybe lie down a minute.

Following Tuesday’s nerd-shattering announcement that the Walt Disney Company is buying Lucasfilm, and the plan includes Star Wars: Episode VII, in early development and hoping for a 2015 release, the speculative race is on for who should direct.

Should it be Christopher Nolan, who exploded open the Batman franchise?  Or Star Trek reboot master J.J. Abrams? Or Joss Whedon, riding the superhero tidal wave of this year’s The Avengers? Lucasfilm founder George Lucas, who wrote and directed the 1977 Star Wars original and the later prequels, will work as a creative consultant on Star Wars: Episode VII, so love him or hate him, he won’t be returning to helm the next film.

Here are our potential picks:
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This Week's Cover: 'The Hobbit' -- plus our annual Comic-Con preview

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Nearly a decade after the last of the Lord of the Rings trilogy hit theaters, it’s time to go back to Middle-earth. The Hobbit doesn’t come out until December, but in preparation for Comic-Con (July 12-15 in San Diego) we’ve got exclusive images and on-set scoops from the first of the two movies— An Unexpected Journey — including interviews with Martin Freeman (Bilbo Baggins), Ian McKellen (Gandalf), and director Peter Jackson.

To expand the classic J.R.R. Tolkien book so that it could support two feature films, Jackson drew from a range of Tolkien’s writings, adding characters not present in the Hobbit book, including Orlando Bloom’s elf Legolas and Cate Blachett’s elven ruler Galadriel. “In the movie we want these characters to have story lines and a little more substance than they do in the book,” Jackson explains. “Almost everything we’re doing is from Tolkien somewhere, whether it’s in the book or the subsequent development that wasn’t published in The Hobbit itself.”

Adds McKellen: “A lot of people weren’t even born when we were filming Lord of the Rings and only know the movies from watching them on DVD…. They’ll see Middle-earth on the big screen in The Hobbit, and I guarantee there will be a lot of minds blown wide apart.”

For even more on The Hobbit, as well as EW’s jam-packed guide to Comic-Con—including sneak peeks of Pacific Rim, Iron Man 3, The Walking Dead, and Arrow—pick up the new issue of Entertainment Weekly, on stands Tuesday, July 3.

'Tintin' website to hold Americans over while the world enjoys the real thing

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Americans aren’t used to waiting for anything, but Steven Spielberg’s The Adventures of Tintin is already playing in Europe and it is expected to open in about 40 countries before it finally opens in the United States on Dec. 21. Put it this way, only Pakistan and Brazil have to wait longer than us Yanks! (Pakistan!!) Let’s not hold a grudge, though. Focus on the positive. The new Tintin website features snippets of John Williams’ new score for the film, and it is positively johnwilliams-y.

Not to belabor the point, but it is fairly unusual for a huge Hollywood film to get a two-month head-start abroad before it finally opens stateside. There’s no denying that Tintin, the creation of the Belgian cartoonist Hergé, has a larger fan-base in Europe, but it’s not winning any new American fans by making us wait. To cheer you up in the interim, watch this behind-the-scene featurette embedded on the new Tintin site: READ FULL STORY

'Hobbit' titles: Tolkien touch or Lifetime drama?

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On the same weekend that the blandly labeled The Hangover Part II was cleaning up at the box office, Peter Jackson revealed the titles for his two Hobbit films: An Unexpected Journey and There and Back Again. Many Tolkien fans rejoiced, as There and Back Again was the subtitle for the original 1937 novel, and An Unexpected Journey echoes the title of the book’s chapter, “An Unexpected Party.”

But are these epic movie titles, on par with The Fellowship of the Ring, and The Return of the King? Because An Unexpected Journey and There and Back Again could also pass as Lifetime movies starring Meredith Baxter.

Did Jackson nail it, or are you crinkling your nose at these titles? Vote below. READ FULL STORY

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