Film News

Well, That Makes Sense – Peter Jackson Admits The Hobbit Production Was a Big Mess

Are the three Hobbit movies a complete waste of time?   –  Nope.

Are the Hobbit movies in the same league as Lord of the Rings?   –  Oh, God no.

Does it kind of look like they didn’t totally know what they were doing with the story?   –  Duh.  Tell me again why Lee Pace’s character was such a dick.

Would you be stunned to learn that by the time they were ready to film the actual battle of five armies they just filmed random action scenes to fill time before Peter Jackson finally shut down production for several months to finally figure out what the heck he was doing?  –  Wait, that might be a little too far.  These movies at least look competently made.

What if I told you that Peter Jackson just admitted in a new video fro the Blu-Ray release of The Battle of Five Armies, “I started shooting the movie with most of it not prepped at all”?   –  Wait, seriously?  Weren’t they planning these movies for literally years, laying in wait for the MGM bankruptcy clusterfuck to work itself out?  How could they have gotten to The Battle of Five Armies and had no prep work completed?

What if I told you that Jackson also admitted that most of the props and costumes weren’t completed until the day of shooting, and that there were no storyboards, partially because the scripts were never ready?  –  Hold on.  Does he mean for The Battle of Five Armies or the for the entire trilogy?

The whole trilogy.  –  Go shut the front hobbit-sized door!  That’s insane!

The gist of it is that they had three and a half years to prep the Lord of the Rings trilogy, but because Guillermo del Toro was originally supposed to direct The Hobbit when he left that robbed them of a year and a half of prep time because what Jackson wanted to do was different than what del Toro planned.  So, they started behind the eight ball and were forever struggling to catch up, and while there are plenty “chaotic production stories” behind classic films (cough, Jaws, cough) it’s more common for the chaos to show up on screen and produce bad or disappointing movies.  The Hobbit trilogy was far more in that latter category than we ever realized before.

Here’s the video. Kudos to the studio for letting everyone at Wetta be honest about their experience on the movie.  Also, does frustration and exasperation somehow sound more adorable coming from people with New Zealand accents?  You decide:

Source: io9


  1. 😦 That explains a lot. Watching that video makes me think of fundamentals that were just messed up: plan first, under promise and over-deliver (if possible). I think it’s fair to say that the films stretched the content too far and were bloated. I wonder how much a bit of cutting would have saved in terms of man hours and overall delivery time.

    On a side note, I don’t want this comment to sound like fat shaming but Jackson did really well to get to a healthier weight but all those long hours seems to have negated some of that.

  2. To be honest this segment feels a little bit overdramatized. When you watch it in context of 30+ hours of behind the scenes features, it plays a bit differently and feels more like the crew stopping to take a breather rather than a 3 year train wreck.

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