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EE Commentary Transcripts
The Three Hunters

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Peter (cont.): [The Three Hunters] The concept that I was doing with the dir– when I shot this stuff of introducing the boys running was to keep the camera moving as much as possible all the time; so I designed the shots so that the camera very rarely was ever still. It was kind of as they were always moving, so we would always be moving around. The tremendous irony with this running stuff – which is, kind of, very iconic from the books – is that, you know, after waiting a long time to shoot this – and we were only on these locations for a very few days, and we had no choice but to shoot it because we were never going back there – Viggo had just broken his toe [Philippa and Fran: Mmm.] in a scene that’s coming up in the movie later on; Brett Beattie who played the small Gimli had dislocated his knee; and Orlando Bloom had fallen off a horse and cracked a rib; and so I was shooting the running stuff with these guys like the Walking Wounded [Philippa laughs sympathetically] and there’s great dailies where they’re limping and they’re hobbling and they’re groaning. [Philippa laughs] But they were real troopers. They were really great.

Philippa: [Aragorn finds Pippin’s brooch] Another beat from the book we were determined to get in.

Peter: Yeah! I love the line, “The leaves of Lórien…”

Fran: “Not idly do the leaves of Lórien fall.”

Peter: No, that’s right. Thank you. Good! [Philippa laughs] You know all the best lines. But I love that line from the book, and it was nice to put in the movie: the elven brooch. And, you know, I’m just trying to keep the camera craning and moving to give a flow to the chase. And this is south New Zealand – Alexandra – where there was a lot of gold-mining happening in the 1800s. (beat) It’s a little bit different to the book, because the plains of Rohan in the book… you do feel like they’re just grasslands – they’re like the prairies [Philippa and Fran: Mmm] of Russia or America – the, you know, endless grass as far as the eye can see; and we actually don’t have a location like that in New Zealand. We have no grasslands per se, but this place I thought was a great stand-in for Rohan, because it has these interesting rock formations.

Fran: You know those moving shots where you had, both with Aragorn and Legolas…

Peter: Yeah.

Fran: …How did you do that?

Peter: Well that was just a dolly that was tracking along the front of them, and even though you’re not getting closer to them or you’re not getting further away, it actually just makes the background roll around the back of them.

Fran: Yeah.

Peter: And that was just my obsession with keeping the camera moving. As I said, I just didn’t want to do a static shot.

The Burning of the Westfold >>

The Lord of the Rings and its content does not belong to me, it is property of the Tolkien Estate;  the commentaries transcribed here, as well as the images used, are the property of New Line Cinema.