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The Art of the Fellowship of the Ring

"The sheer quality of their hundreds of sketches and paintings . . . gives more than a hint of the literally awesome excitement and joy the designers had in bringing Tolkien's literary vision to spectacular life." — Gary Russell, from the Foreword


Where did most of the design influences in the movie come from? What does the floor plan of Bag End look like? How were digital techniques used to increase the scale of Middle-earth on screen? Who made the Orcs look so fearsome?

Nominated for thirteen Academy Awards and honored with four (including those for cinematography, visual effects, and makeup), the film The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring was a masterful and celebrated interpretation of J.R.R. Tolkien's classic novel. Houghton Mifflin is proud to be publishing the official guide to the design of this magnificent production, the first film in New Line Cinema's epic adventure trilogy.

In The Lord of the Rings: The Art of The Fellowship of the Ring, Gary Russell reveals the secrets of the talented creative team that made the movie look as innovative and electrifying as it does. Millions of fans around the globe (the film is the fifth top-grossing movie of all time worldwide) have been dazzled by the film's dynamic and authentic look, and they will find in Russell's book everything they want to know about the genesis and evolution of that look.

The text, compiled from exclusive interviews with Academy Award–nominated director Peter Jackson, special effects supervisor and two-time Academy Award–winner Richard Taylor, Academy Award–nominated designers Grant Major and Ngila Dickson, and others, is accompanied by 500 exclusive images, from the earliest pencil sketches and conceptual drawings to splendid full-color paintings that shaped the look of the movie.

Other contributors to The Lord of the Rings: The Art of The Fellowship of the Ring include Alan Lee and John Howe, the two artists whose award-winning work has adorned Tolkien's books for years and who inspired Peter Jackson's vision of Middle-earth. According to production designer Grant Major, "Alan's and John's art influenced everything . . . because both of them came with this long history of illustrating the books." Indeed, Lee's and Howe's involvement was critical in making the big-screen version of Tolkien's tale as genuine and respectful of the literature as it is.

This authoritative volume features all of the principal locations (including Hobbiton, Isengard, Rivendell, Moria, Lothlórien, and Mordor), costumes, armor, and creatures in dramatic detail, including concepts, storyboards, and images that did not make it into the final film.

The Lord of the Rings: The Art of The Fellowship of the Ring truly celebrates the collaboration, the imagination, and the passion that turned the first film in the Lord of the Rings trilogy into an award-winning international success.

The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring will be available in two distinctly different versions on both DVD and VHS formats on August 6 and November 12, 2002. The second film in the trilogy, The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers, will be released in theaters on December 18, 2002.

About the Author

Gary Russell has worked widely in media, as a magazine editor, novelist, columnist, and audio drama producer.

Academy Awards and nominations for
The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring

Academy Awards
Andrew Lesnie

Visual Effects
Jim Rygiel, Randall William Cook, Richard Taylor, and Mark Stetson

Peter Owen and Richard Taylor

Original Score
Howard Shore
Academy Award Nominations
Best Picture
Peter Jackson, Fran Walsh, and Barrie M. Osborne

Peter Jackson

Supporting Actor
Ian McKellen

Screenplay (written based on material previously produced or published)
Fran Walsh, Philippa Boyens, and Peter Jackson

Art Direction
Grant Major and Dan Hennah

Christopher Boyes, Michael Semanick, Gethin Creagh, and Hammond Peek

Original Song
"May It Be" — Enya, Nicky Ryan, and Roma Ryan

Costume Design
Ngila Dickson and Richard Taylor

Film Editing
John Gilbert

Academy Award® is a registered trademark of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.

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