Hey folks, Harry here. Today is the day that NEW LINE has gone and put up their REAL VIDEO (nasty unclear unable to be saved bs video format) of the TEASER TRAILER. And while vast armies of folks from around the world climb over each other trying to break the very fabric of bandwidth abilities to see this thing, there is another issue facing online fandom at the moment.
That is the departure of Michael De Luca at New Line and whether or not this means CERTAIN DOOM for the post-production process for LORD OF THE RINGS and Peter Jackson.
From everyone I talked to in New Zealand and at New Line, the two champions in the Executive Arena on LORD OF THE RINGS were Mark Ordesky and Bob Shaye. Bob was who wanted to make 3 films... It was his idea and would not have happened had he not suggested it. And Ordesky is the executive at New Line that has been gathering together theater owners and international partners... visiting the sets, staying updated with the latest script pages and over-seeing the project from afar.
Now, you might have read that Bob Shaye has just re-signed his deal with New Line's parent company AOL-TIME/WARNER, meaning he's going to be there for the next 4 or more years at least. I don't know the status of Ordesky's deal, but I believe he is in a stable position at New Line and Fine Line.
Now the idea of New Line pulling the rug out on Peter Jackson during the Post Production process on FELLOWSHIP OF THE RING... well it is quite simply ludicrous. New Line is abuzz about the quality of the dailies and the footage they have from the film. Through the release of FELLOWSHIP, they will fully support Peter Jackson... The next soothsayer moment for the trilogy will be the actual grosses for FELLOWSHIP OF THE RINGS. While many of us anticipate phenomenal box office performance... if it doesn't happen.... THAT IS WHERE DANGER LIES. There is a chance that New Line and its parent company would panic and drastically cut the post-production budgets for TWO TOWERS and RETURN OF THE KING.
However, before they did that, they would need to examine and study what went wrong. If the movies are of high quality and critics love them and award shows love them... but for some weird ass reason only SKATEBOARD CULTURE is attending.... Well, New Line would have to turn their eyes FIRST to the Theatrical Marketing department and their 'plan of attack' and probably begin firing there.
Or the reaction may be to sink more money into it to make the effects even stronger and more spectacular. Ya never know. But quite frankly fretting about the executive shuffles and how it affects LORD OF THE RINGS right now? Well, it is kinda silly. The projects that De Luca was on that I'm worried about now would be BLADE 2 and IRON MAN.... And I would be worried, except that the guy replacing De Luca, a fella by the name of Toby Emmerich.... well in addition to being a suit.... like De Luca he has actually written a film that New Line made... FREQUENCY, which quite a few people liked... and means that to a degree... this guy gets it. ALSO, he was the executive in charge of Music with New Line... which has been extremely successful with the musical end of things for the company.
So chill for now folks. New Line has invested nearly a quarter of a billion dollars in this series, and won't over-react or change things radically until it is proven to be not working, and that hasn't happened yet.... and won't till the film opens next holidays, when we will all know.
So.... breathe in..... breathe out...... and take a look at the trailer in REAL VIDEO or watch E! or go see a movie this weekend.
And then there is of course this... The fun thing is, I was standing about 3 feet away when Peter recorded this. If you want a picture in your mind's eye for where this took place... The first painting of the TOWER HALL by Alan Lee in THE RETURN OF THE KING edition... Peter was standing about 5 feet in front of the Black Chair/throne like thing that Lord Denethor sits in. Moments before this, Faramir and Pippin were talking about Pippin's armor and Denethor. All around us you can hear the noise on the set of the BOOM operator gathering up the various headphones for the wireless audio... the grips breaking down the equipment, the gaffers taking apart the lighting arrays.... Now amongst people going to and fro, Peter does this interview, and I listen. When listening to this... You are at Minas Tirith. You are at the base of the Throne of Gondor and Denethor's blackened chair. Now go, close your eyes and be in middle earth in the most spectacular fortress city that we have ever read about....
Maybe you all already have these fine 3.9 Megs, maybe not. Here goes Peter Jackson:
Harry: (if not online already) I'm Stan, the Man
PS... Harry here again! I sure do wish we had a full screen superduper QUICKTIME version of this thing!!!