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EE Commentary Transcripts
Sons of the Steward

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Fran: Yes.

Peter: Yes, yes. Definitely. Yes.

Peter: [Sons of the Steward] When we were cutting the film together, we decided to do this next sequence: it’s a big pick-up that we shot earlier last year, and it didn’t make the final cut, but I still am very pleased with it, because we really liked the idea that within the mythology, if you like – within the trilogy – we see the family together, which is basically –. I’m talking about Boromir and Faramir as brothers and Denethor as their father; and in a sense, this gives you a little preview to ‘The Return of the King’ because the character of Denethor is a character that features very strongly in that film. But this is effectively the only time that you see the three characters together, which meant that we had to do a flashback, because within the events of ‘The Lord of the Rings’, they never are together at the same time; but I somehow… You know, I just like the idea that this creates a… It almost, like, fills in a missing piece of the puzzle, because when you see ‘The Fellowship of the Ring’ and you see Boromir galloping in to Rivendell, and he’s there because he’d heard that the Ring had been found, you know. You, sort of, could ask, “Why?” I mean, “Where did this guy come from? What’s this all about?” And this sequence, in a way, explains exactly what it’s all about whilst also giving us some quite valuable relationship information, particularly between Faramir and Denethor [Philippa: That –.], which is very relevant for ‘The Return of the King’.

Philippa: That’s definitely, I think, what the value of this was, for us: was explaining Faramir a little bit more, and where he’s come from.

Peter: [at same time as Philippa] Now this is one of those instances where having the ‘Two Towers’ extended cut is going to give you a bit of valuable insight to this back story that… People who go and see ‘The Return of the King’ are not going to have this information if they haven’t seen the extended cut. They don’t need it, but it’s, kind of, quite cool, though. (beat) John Noble’s a really interesting actor. He’s Australian, and I’d never seen him before: I’d never actually seen him in any Australian movies – I’m sure he’s done some – but he auditioned for us, and he just has a great Shakespearian quality, which is –. We felt the character of Denethor would be really suited to being just slightly ‘heightened’, if you like. [Philippa agrees] (beat) The shots of Sean Bean were done after darkness had fallen, because it took us so long to shoot the scene. We did all this in one day – the whole thing – and it was a real rush to get everything shot. Sean actually flew out from England to New Zealand just to shoot this sequence: he was very gracious to do that, and I felt absolutely terrible when we cut it out of the movie; but, of course, again, you know, with a DVD extended cut it can live to be seen and enjoyed by people.

Fran: And it’s really this sort of sequence that – if you did ever do a re-edit on all three movies – that would be an incredibly valuable piece of story set-up [Peter: Yeah.] that would play early.

Peter: Yeah.

Philippa: Mmm.

Peter: It is like a missing piece of the puzzle.

Fran: [at same time as Peter] I’d love the try it.

Philippa: Yeah, we should! (beat) This relationship between the father and the two sons is actually great drama and incredibly important in understanding Faramir’s character, and the actions of course, of his father Denethor. It was also great… Fran and I always wanted to make sense of the line that we use in the caves: “A chance for Faramir, Captain of Gondor to show his…”

Fran: “Quality.”

Philippa: “… quality”, which was a strange line, and we wanted to find an opportunity to make sense of that, because it’s also a beautiful line reprised by Sam in this extended cut.

Peter: [Boromir sets out from Gondor] Sean Bean’s wearing his costume from ‘The Fellowship of the Ring’ here, which is the linking component that I really like, that, you know, the first time we see him in ‘Fellowship’ is when he gallops in through the Rivendell gates and he’s wearing this same outfit; and this is him heading off on what would be a five-day journey between Osgiliath and Rivendell.

Philippa: A scene with these two guys, the two brothers, and seeing how much they cared about each other and loved each other.

Peter: It was interesting trying to just capture these little pieces from the book that do stand out in the memory; …

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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.