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[icon] A Journey With Frodo : Ch 13 ~ A Day of Toils - NotAlone
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Subject:A Journey With Frodo : Ch 13 ~ A Day of Toils
Time:09:51 pm
Current Mood:enthralled
Well, I wasn't able to post this chapter as soon as I'd hoped - I must admit I got somewhat sidetracked by all the wonderful pics, video clips and articles about 'The Oxford Murders' that have been popping up everywhere!!

I mentioned in a previous post that I'd be posting two chapters but after some revision I've decided it's best left as just one after all!! For the title of this chapter I've quoted Elijah when he was speaking about one particular day during the Henneth Annun scene, but I'm quite sure it could have been applied to any day of the entire shoot!!






One day during our New Zealand holiday in March 2005, my husband and I were driving towards Te Anau and I noticed a signpost pointing in the opposite direction to Manapouri. Something clicked in my mind when I saw this – I knew it must have some LOTR significance but I just couldn’t recall what it was. If I’d remembered, I would just had to have made a detour, if only to gaze upon this:



You may wonder why I should want to go out of my way to view this rather ordinary and unimposing community hall but, in the history of LOTR filming, this was a very special place indeed for it was here that another chapter in the making of these incredible movies was created:

“The central piece of drama outside The Black Gate, which happens on top of the rock where Frodo and Sam first crawl on their hands and knees and just appear over the rock and see the gate, was actually shot in a community hall in a very small town called Manapouri. We were in this very remote part of The South Island and you always have what you call weather cover which is where you’re shooting scenes outside in the forest but just in case it rains, as it tends to do down there quite a bit, you build a set where you can suddenly rush everyone inside if its raining …” (PJ, DVD)


And I'm sure they did!

Elijah and Sean arrive at the hall (unfortunately only top half of Elijah's face was visible in this clip!!)- Sean mentions that he loves coming to Te Anau to film because they always shoot on indoor sports venues - for Cirith Ungol it was a squash court - and now basketball for the gates of Mordor!!


Preparing for the scene:












It was also here, in these humble surroundings, that an event of earth-shattering magnitude occurred, one which would be retold to hushed convention audiences for years to come. I speak of the Incident of Sean’s Wig.

“Where Frodo, Sam & Gollum are up against the rock about to make that move, that sort of run, there was a moment in that scene where they get up to make the dash to the gates and Gollum pulls them back…” (Elijah, DVD)



“I leapt through the air, grabbing Sean & Elijah’s cloaks, accidentally grabbing hold of Sean’s wig in the process. As I yanked them both backwards, Sean’s wig literally took off, and was suddenly airborne, landing a great distance away. Elijah and I collapsed in a helpless heap, as did Pete who called cut. It was quite shocking . In all the months of shooting, a wig had never come off and then suddenly, in a flash, the desperate reality of Frodo’s quest turned into this surreal comedy!” (Andy, from his book “Gollum”)





“It was kind of intense ‘cos Sean got really upset and kind of stormed off
It all happened so quickly and Andy was like ‘ I’m sorry, I didn’t mean it’ …”



And Andy thought Sean was upset at him so Andy was upset at Sean…”
(Elijah, DVD)



The expression on Elijah’s face here is just priceless!!


”I was also just impressed that Andy had literally torn his wig off – that was a first - no-one had done that on the film to my knowledge!!”

We all loved and respected one another and got along incredibly well but you know, as with anything tensions can run high, especially with only three people and the intensity of those moments."
(Elijah, DVD)



I’m not sure where they were located for this part of the Black Gate scene – but it was a very windy day!!










“It’s a very windy day today – I heard it ws 70 – er, what is it? – 70 kilometers per hour gusts? Something like that. It’s pretty mad. …”



“I nearly fell over on Sean as he was tucked into the rocks there – I had to jump over him ‘cos as I was going forward the wind was pushing me hard! It’s very interesting to work in wind like this.”
(Elijah, Limited Ed. DVD)









******


"Peter, Elijah, Sean and I were driven back up to Ohakune to shoot a key new scene, where the division between Frodo and Sam really begins to grow. Sam is mocking Gollum but Frodo defends him, telling Sam that he wants to save the wretch. Sam thinks that Frodo is being maniupulated and implies that he sounds more and more like Gollum himself. Meanwhile Gollum, unaware of this conversation, is desperately trying to catch a fish. He seems happier now, almost like a child that is being shown affection at last. I wanted there to be a sense of him looking back at Frodo as if to say, 'Look at me, Dad!'

The chosen location for this scene was Mangawherro Falls, under the great Mount Ruapehu. The vista that Peter wanted to shoot was spectacular. However, there was a problem. It was under a deep layer of snow and it needed to look like summer"
(Andy Serkis ~ from his book "Gollum")





By lunchtime the crew had managed to clear most of the snow using hoses, heaters and blowtorches.













"The thing is, the snow was melted away but it didn’t necessarily make the water any warmer and Andy actually had to be flopping about in the water. He had a wet suit on but it didn’t help – it was absolutely freezing cold." (Elijah, DVD)



"I looked at Sean and I was like,'It's freaking me out dude, the water was freezing cold. I think we did it like – four times!! It was mental – Andy was crazy!!" (Elijah ~ Return to Middle Earth)





"We wanted to increase the tension between Frodo and Sam - we wanted to up the ante a little bit so we wrote this scene where they have an argument" (PJ ~ DVD)

















"This location was actually right on the edge of a NZ Army firing range where they do live firing with artillery and tanks and various other things and we obviously had their permission to film there - I remember we were in the middle of shooting a shot of Elijah, and Sean was saying “It’s the ring, isn’t it?” and - just about perfect timing - when he said “It’s the ring” there was this God awful explosion, like really seriously loud, and the cameras are rolling and everyone just freaked ‘cos we just don’t know what this thing is … and Elijah just kind of - he barely registers it ‘cos he’s right in the middle of his performance -he kind of flinches and just keeps on going." (PJ ~ DVD)

The pic below is at the moment of the explosion - I can’t even detect the slightest flinch when I watch this!!



And they were actually shooting off weapons down below!! (Elijah ~ DVD)








******


It was around this time that, for one scene (which never made it to the final cut, as it happens) a stand-in was required for Andy. Rick Porras, co-producer, was the one chosen for this task.



What a terrible actor. He was totally distracting the other actors - it was terrible!! (Barry Osborne, DVD)


I think we were yelling all day, 'Forest Gimp'!! I think he got incredibly tired of that. He didn't really suit the suit at all - it didn't really work. (Elijah, DVD)




I think he was quite proud and slightly embarrassed initially - possibly - but then, you know, kind of proud to be working in that capacity and that's also a great - it's a great example of the way that these movies were shot in the sense that everybody put forth all of their effort. everybody wanted to give everything they possibly could to get these movies made in the right way and sometimes that meant taking on jobs that they weren't used to taking.
(Elijah, DVD)


******


"I hope you got all the good footage because today was no easy day ...


... it was a day of toils.


It was a lot of waiting around for the rain to stop – for the sun to shine ...

We had a little bit of sun this morning ...


then we had a lot of rain ...


... then we had a little bit of sun and then we called it quits.


But we got the meat of the scene done ...


... accomplishment!!


Satisfying!! (Sean)


And ... scene!!


Giggles!!


And ... scene!!


Giggles!!




******


We all loved and respected one another and got along incredibly well but you know, as with anything tensions can run high, especially with only three people and the intensity of those moments."




TO BE CONTINUED

LINK TO PREVIOUS CHAPTERS
http://not-alone.livejournal.com/tag/a+journey+with+frodo
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(Anonymous)
Link:(Link)
Time:2008-02-03 12:02 am (UTC)
A fabulous chapter, Pauline.

You have featured some of my favourite behind-the-scenes pics here. Sean's wig ~ I did feel for him, but as you say, Elijah's expression is priceless! And the 'argument' scene shot near the army range ~ I've watched that countless times, and I have never seen Elijah flinch either. What a professional! The last set, with Elijah and Sean ~ I love 'And... scene.' I wonder if they are mimicking anyone there, but it always makes me smile.

Thanks so much. I always look forward to more 'Journey with Frodo.'
~ Blossom.
(Reply) (Thread)


not_alone
Link:(Link)
Time:2008-02-03 12:29 am (UTC)
Glad you enjoyed this chapter, Blossom. I did feel rather sorry for Sean too - I think there must have been times when he thought, "Why me?" - he did seem to be quite unlucky!! I also think that afterwards he was rather embarrassed that he'd stomped off - but I think in a way it was understandable even though it was no-one's fault.

I really adore the 'And ... scene' scene - I've watched it so many times, I love the giggling as they go off. I've a feeling they may have been mimicking somebody but I've no idea who. Perhaps some of our American friends will know. Did you see the funny skit on the 2004 MTV Movie Awards - the one where they try to persuade PJ to do a fourth film? Someone in that did that same 'And ... scene' thing but I've never known if he was copying Elijah & Sean or the person they may or may not have been copying!!! It's getting complicated:D

Earlier tonight I was looking at Mechtild's wonderful post about your website - you must be thrilled with it:) I will still do a post about it myself now that I've finally got this chapter up but I think I'll also ask Mechtild if I can refer to her post in case anyone has missed it. Her praise is certainly fully deserved - I hadn't actually got round to looking at all the screencaps on your site and those she posted just took my breath away!! Actually, when I did try to get in, although I got the front page up I couldn't open any of the links for the reason you mentioned in your reply to her. I wonder if that was because so many people were trying to access it following Mech's post!!

Many thanks for your comment Blossom:)
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not_alone
Link:(Link)
Time:2008-02-03 05:39 pm (UTC)
Many thanks, Mews - glad you enjoyed this chapter.

And the obvious affection between Sean and Elijah is lovely.

It is wonderful to see how close they were - and I think the affection and respect the whole cast had for each other was a big part of what made this such a special experience for all of them:)


(Reply) (Parent) (Thread)

wakerobin
Link:(Link)
Time:2008-02-03 12:13 am (UTC)
Could I ask exactly where on which DVD the scene is with Sean and Elijah and the adorable "and scene" and giggling is located? I remember seeing it once about a year ago and I've spent the time since trying to relocate it!!!
(Reply) (Thread)


not_alone
Link:(Link)
Time:2008-02-03 05:45 pm (UTC)
It's on the extended edition of the TTT dvd, disk 4. It comes at the very end of the Cameras in Middle Earth section - if you're fast forwarding it's very easy to miss it - I know 'cos I've done the same thing myself!! :)
(Reply) (Parent) (Thread)


mechtild
Link:(Link)
Time:2008-02-03 12:20 am (UTC)
Gosh, I love this series, Not Alone. I am so glad you're doing it. I know these extras, but it's such a pleasure to "see" them this way, slowed down, so they can be browsed through, go back, go forward, read a statement again. What a job of work everyone did on this film. Again, I am so impressed and so grateful.

The droll way you said this made me laugh:

It was also here, in these humble surroundings, that an event of earth-shattering magnitude occurred, one which would be retold to hushed convention audiences for years to come. I speak of the Incident of Sean’s Wig.

"The Incident of the Wig". Yes, it was a major event, or became one. ;)
(Reply) (Thread)


not_alone
Link:(Link)
Time:2008-02-03 05:53 pm (UTC)
Many thanks, Mechtild - so glad you're still enjoying 'Journey':)

Poor Sean - I doubt he'll ever forget the I of the W!!
(Reply) (Parent) (Thread)


primula_baggins
Link:(Link)
Time:2008-02-03 12:34 am (UTC)
Such amazing memories. No wonder Elijah wants to go back. Who wouldn't want to? Such an amazing time.

I thank you once again for putting this all together. Truly, there is so much that I haven't seen or read before, and I love the screen caps that accompany each chapter.

(Reply) (Thread)


not_alone
Link:(Link)
Time:2008-02-03 06:01 pm (UTC)
Many thanks, Prim - glad to hear you're still enjoying 'Journey':)

No wonder Elijah wants to go back

I can't tell you how much I'm hoping this will happen:)
(Reply) (Parent) (Thread)


verangel
Link:(Link)
Time:2008-02-03 12:34 am (UTC)
Can I say I love you for taking me back. I loved every moment. Some I had seen but really most I had never seen. There is one shot where Elijah's eyes were incredible (profile)...like turqoise. I love that uncomfortable squeemish loook he got with the Sean hair pull thing.
I can't wait for more.
hugs you and xoxoxoxo v
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not_alone
Link:(Link)
Time:2008-02-03 06:08 pm (UTC)
Many thanks for your kind comments - I'm so glad you enjoyed it:) *hugs*
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_celebrian
Link:(Link)
Time:2008-02-03 02:06 am (UTC)
Thanks again for all your time and effort on these. It's wonderful as usual and there are always some new quotes or pics for me. Such a pleasure to see each new chapter. :-)
(Reply) (Thread)


not_alone
Link:(Link)
Time:2008-02-03 06:09 pm (UTC)
You're very welcome, Celebrian - glad to hear you enjoyed it:)
(Reply) (Parent) (Thread)


shirebound
Link:(Link)
Time:2008-02-03 04:01 am (UTC)
Gosh, I just love your posts. Elijah's concentration during a scene must be phenomenal.

I'll link to this tomorrow!

*hugs you*
(Reply) (Thread)


not_alone
Link:(Link)
Time:2008-02-03 06:12 pm (UTC)
Elijah's concentration during a scene must be phenomenal

Absolutely!! I've watched this clip so many times and I really don't understand why PJ says that he flinches - because he doesn't!! Not at all.

I'll link to this tomorrow

Thank you so much:) *hugs*
(Reply) (Parent) (Thread)


annwyn55
Link:(Link)
Time:2008-02-03 04:33 am (UTC)
What a great chapter - both of the filming anecdotes that I love! Such an adorable *eep* expression Elijah's sporting in that wig incident, and no - I can't see the flinch either!

That last sequence clearly shows how comfortable Sean and Elijah were with each other - impeccable and seamless byplay.

Thank you, luv - you made my evening!
(Reply) (Thread)


not_alone
Link:(Link)
Time:2008-02-03 08:50 pm (UTC)
Many thanks, Annwyn - glad you enjoyed it:)

That last sequence clearly shows how comfortable Sean and Elijah were with each other - impeccable and seamless byplay

I agree - you can tell that they're completely at ease with each other.

you made my evening!

Aww - I'm so glad about that:)
(Reply) (Parent) (Thread)


frolijah_fan_54
Link:(Link)
Time:2008-02-03 05:23 am (UTC)
WHEEEEEEEE - it's always such a treat to see a new chapter of Journey with Frodo!! I watched the Incident with Sean's Wig many times on the DVD - I just love Elijah's expression!! And all the pics show the closeness between Sean and Elijah so well - but those pics towards the end with the incredible color of Elijah's eyes - WOW!!

What an amazing resource this is - both words and pics - and I can't thank you enough for sharing this with us!!
(Reply) (Thread)


not_alone
Link:(Link)
Time:2008-02-03 08:54 pm (UTC)
You're very welcome - so glad you enjoyed it:)

but those pics towards the end with the incredible color of Elijah's eyes - WOW!!

I know - I think it's when there's bright sunshine - it seems to catch the blue of his eyes and make them even more brilliant:)

(Reply) (Parent) (Thread)


mole_caz
Link:(Link)
Time:2008-02-03 01:46 pm (UTC)
Amazing - Elijah is just the consummate actor isn't he? Fancy being so focused you don't react to an explosion like that?! Incredible!

I found the village hall on my travels and I think I took a picture but I can't remember now. As for those falls - it was abysmal weather when we were there. Heavy rain, wind, icy cold, poor visibility and the river was in flood so the falls were cascading and dangerous! Perfect LOTR filming weather by the sounds of it?

Thanks for this - can't wait for the next episode.
(Reply) (Thread)


not_alone
Link:(Link)
Time:2008-02-03 09:01 pm (UTC)
You're welcome, Mole:) Yes, Elijah must be incredibly focussed not to react in such a situation.

Ah, so you actually went to Manapouri - I wish we had instead of just seeing the signpost!!
(Reply) (Parent) (Thread)


janejanejane
Link:(Link)
Time:2008-02-03 02:35 pm (UTC)
Thanks so much, dear friend, I really enjoyed this as I have all the previous chapters!

Others have already commented on the things I would have too, ie. the "Wig" incident and Elijah's facial expression, the incredible blue of Elijah's eyes, the close relationship and ease between Sean and Elijah...

The scene where they were filming Gollum's fishing pool took me right back to the two occasions when we were there. In 2005 it was clear, but last August it was covered in snow just as it must have been on that day when they were scheduled to film.

It looked magical, especially the snow on the tiny beech leaves where we walked to look at the height of Mangawhero Falls. The beech trees themselves are only quite small - their height is restricted because of the altitude - so the branches and leaves were brushing our shoulders. Truly a "winter wonderland"!

We weren't sorry to climb back into the minibus and head for the cosy warmth of the Powderhorn Chateau as the light began to fail, however! The driving snow had been horizontal on Mt Ruapehu earlier that day :/ On the way there that morning we'd had some of those showers with rain, then sun, then rain, then sun... Plenty of rainbows, too! A memorable day.

As Primula Baggins says, it's no wonder Elijah wants to return, who wouldn't? I certainly do! :)

Thanks again for bringing it all back and thanks for all your hard work putting this together.
(Reply) (Thread)


not_alone
Link:(Link)
Time:2008-02-03 09:05 pm (UTC)
Thanks Jane - you're very welcome:) It must have been great to see that location just as it was when they were filming. And yes, Elijah certainly fell in love with NZ - just as we did. I do hope he will be going back:)
(Reply) (Expand) (Parent) (Thread)


frodosweetstuff
Link:(Link)
Time:2008-02-03 02:39 pm (UTC)
Lovely lovely lovely! As always, so much stuff I wasn't aware of and so many good quotes and the pics and aahhhh. I feel I am there with them!!!

Thank you so very much! I adore this series!!!!
(Reply) (Thread)


not_alone
Link:(Link)
Time:2008-02-03 09:07 pm (UTC)
You're very welcome - so glad you enjoyed it:)

I feel I am there with them!!!

That's just how I feel when I'm working on this project:)

(Reply) (Parent) (Thread)


overlithe64
Link:(Link)
Time:2008-02-03 03:25 pm (UTC)
I love these trips down memory lane with Frolijah...It makes me want to crack open my DVDs again. Its been ever so long since I watched my special editions/extended editions or even the regular editions.

Thanks so much...it never hurts to remember how absolutely beautiful Elijah is as Frodo....He is a beautiful man in general, but as Frodo he is simply angelic.
(Reply) (Thread)


not_alone
Link:(Link)
Time:2008-02-03 09:10 pm (UTC)
You're very welcome - glad you enjoyed it:)

He is a beautiful man in general, but as Frodo he is simply angelic.

Exactly!! I couldn't have said it any better myself:)
(Reply) (Parent) (Thread)


karin_woywod
Link:(Link)
Time:2008-02-03 03:49 pm (UTC)


I've only ever seen about 30% of the sources you draw from, so this is really 'enlightening' to me !

Your essays are the next best thing other than having a true time machine at your disposal and the ability of being a fly on the wall.

This filming is of course much better documented than any other filming, so no wonder we keep hearing so much about it we feel as if we had been there. I don't want to over-mystify it. But even if we just treat it like any other (if rather lengthy) filming process, the actor's abilities in their acting, the passion the project induced in cast & crew and the relations between cast members (or cast & crew members) really make stand it out - it's unique, it was an unrepeatable experience, one of a kind !

Thank you for sharing that with us !

Love,

- Karin.

(Reply) (Thread)


not_alone
Link:(Link)
Time:2008-02-03 09:16 pm (UTC)
Many thanks for your kind comments, Karin - I'm so glad you're enjoying 'Journey':)

it's unique, it was an unrepeatable experience, one of a kind !

That is so true and even as it was happening, Elijah knew this. So many times during filming he was heard to say "This is the experience of a lifetime, I'll never have another experience like this". :)


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[icon] A Journey With Frodo : Ch 13 ~ A Day of Toils - NotAlone
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