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  • **TTT Music for Middle-earth: Fun** — aMagpie 8:45 (4/10)
    • a bit of Beatle fun on main... — aMagpie 9:07 (1/2)
    • "Fun" , stress and creativity... — weaver 19:52 (1/1)
      • I pretty much agree — aMagpie, 12/9 @ 0:17 (0/0)
    • Wanna see a picture? — grammaboodawg, 12/12 @ 9:23 (1/2)
      • Way Cool! — aMagpie, 12/12 @ 10:40 (1/1)
        • *goosebumps*  Whoa — grammaboodawg, 12/12 @ 11:08 (0/0)
  • aMagpie



    All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy
    Proverb, 1659

    A film with no beginning or end. Crunched by deadlines. Key people located on different continents. New material needed for the Extended Edition. No breathing space before jumping into ROTK. People working around the clock. One can imagine the stress level for anyone involved in the scoring process. But apparently there was time for fun. What can we observe about people when they let their work focus fall long enough to play?

    Abbey Road
    Peter Jackson Working at Abbey Road was pretty amazing.

    Paul Broucek: Peter is a huge Beatles fan. We set up camp and we do all our mixing and editing at Abbey Road Studios in London. One day we thought, well... why don’t we, for a laugh, go out and do what all the tourists do which is to cross the pedestrian crossing outside of Abbey Road. And John Kurlander, who was there working at Abbey Road with the Beatles on the day that the photograph was actually taken for the cover, he said, “Well I’ve never done it. I’ve never had my photo taken.” So we said, “Come on John.” So Peter, Howard Shore, John Kurlander, myself, and Rick Porras risk our life—at rush hour—and go back and forth across this crossing and try and get a couple of decent shots.

    Rick Porras: I think we even got some footage of us deciding who’s going to go first. Who’s going to be John; who’s going to be Paul; who’s going to be Ringo? Of course, Peter’s walking barefoot so that helps. Of course, that street on Abbey Road is a major thoroughfare. There are cars flying by constantly.

    On Screen: Howard Shore lets out a little yelp and skips ahead as he spots a car coming.

    Peter Jackson Howard was really nervous and he just didn’t trust the fact that vehicles were going to stop.

    On Screen: Howard Shore takes long loping strides to clear the crosswalk, overtaking the person in front who is walking sedately.

    Peter Jackson So it was actually a hell of a nightmare doing it with Howard because he was so nervous about even just stepping onto the road.

    Rick Porras: And he kept just kind of hesitating and sort of messing up a bit.

    On Screen: Howard Shore is trying to push the person in front of him to go faster even though the car has stopped for them.

    Rick Porras: There was one moment where a car zipped by and I think someone grabbed Howard just in the nick of time.

    On Screen: Safe on the other side, Howard Shore holds his hand over his heart.

    Paul Broucek: With a little help from one of the PAs, we got some photos, one of which has ended up as the inside artwork on the soundtrack of Two Towers.

    The Gong
    Peter Jackson On The Two Towers, I got to do something which I sort of harbored a secret desire to do all the way through Fellowship and I never said anything to anybody. But I wanted to play an instrument. I said to Howard, “Look, is there anything I could just do... something simple?” and he said, “How about banging the gong?”

    Rick Porras: It’s not enough that he’s a writer and a director and a producer of it... no, he has to get on that score.

    On Screen: Aragorn riding up the streets of Meduseld (Gandalf, Legolas, & Gimli not shown)
    Music Playing: Éowyn Shieldmaiden’s Theme with gong at end

    Peter Jackson We found a spot where Aragorn is riding into Edoras for the first time. He’s seen Éowyn standing up on the balcony and he kind of looks up a second time and she’s not there. And we just wanted this sort of “dzrrrrth” (makes sweeping motion with hands)... this kind of set gong sound. So I got trained up... a very good gong player in the LPO that gave me these lessons. It’s all to do with the wrist, you see. The flicking the wrist.

    On Screen: Someone with headphones on (not the gong instructor): He must play in the right part otherwise he *doesn’t* get the right sound. Howard Shore to Peter, “Punch it once and then let it decay.” Someone, I think Peter, gives an excited giggle. And then Peter bangs the gong.

    Howard Shore: (chuckling) He did it... He had to do a few takes but I think... yeah.. one of them is definitely in the film. Sounds good. (He kind of shakes his head while slightly stifling his grin. He then breaks out in laughter.)
    Magpie adds: I have to say that ‘Sounds good’ has that same intonation that we might use to say, “okay... I’ll go along with that.” But it could be more straightforward than that. It’s pretty funny to watch Howard here.

    Rick Porras: It just was a lot of fun and I think the LPO really enjoyed it. And I think... that’s one thing he always brings to the process: He keeps it fun and upbeat. Even though we were pulling incredibly long hours and people were exhausted and music was constantly getting shifted around and changed and adjusted. Just doing little things like that go a long way.

    On Screen: Applause for Peter as he exits the floor.

    Paul Broucek: The funny running joke after that was that Peter loved his hit and wanted to hear more of it. Which is so typical of a musician.

    Rick Porras: He’s hoping that maybe he can get bumped up.

    On Screen: Peter Jackson says, “Next year I’ll move my way forward slightly... a couple of chairs, I think, with a view to finally being on the podium.” Howard giggles.

    Rick Porras: I think it’s something to watch. So, Howard Shore... you better be wary of that. (chuckles)


    Magpie Shiny Bits of Information:
    The Gong’s place in the soundtrack: The music in this scene was cut short just enough in the Original Soundtrack (OST) that the gong could not be heard. I assumed I could pull a soundclip of it from the Complete Recordings (CR-TTT). But, interestingly, it is not on the CR-TTT.

    Magpie Conversation Prompts:
    Putting a personal face on it: How much do you relate to or enjoy these personable sorts of reports? Do you think we’re getting a pretty accurate look at the people involved or is there some amount of PR spin involved? Has something you’ve seen in one of these appendices sections changed your viewpoint or opinion about someone? 

    Fun at work: If you had a chance to watch this segment, perhaps you felt, as I did, that there may have been a touch of hysterical exhaustion creeping up on people? Do you know what I mean? When I’ve been intensively focused on for a long time I can slide into a state of both exhilaration and exhaustion and get to a point where the giggles set in. I think it releases endorphins or something because this has resulted in some very fun moments. Or do you think that, rather than having a sense of silliness creep up in moments of exhaustion, they maintained a lighthearted, fun attitude throughout the process? Do you think being able to laugh with people you’re working with involves some level of trust? Does it enhance the working environment or detract or distract from it?

    The Gong: (Read Shiny Bit of information above if you haven‘t already.) A lot of attention and time was given to getting satisfying this request of PJ’s to play an instrument. The information was in the Music for Middle-earth section of the appendices. It was a musical instrument and recorded along with the music. Why do you think it was ultimately left out of the Complete Recordings? Do you think Peter knows it was left out (or is his life too busy to be bother with such triffling nonsense)? If so, do you think he’s disappointed at all?  Considering the time spent vs. the decision to leave it out of the ultimate soundtrack recording, is this a good example of how having fun simply helps with the relief of stress or enhances the bonding of workmates? Or is it a good example of how it’s all just a waste of time. (Although you may treat any of these questions as seriously as you like, feel free to follow the topic and insert a bit of light hearted fun and frivolity in your answers if so moved.)


    Responses to Fun:


    aMagpie 12/08/06 
    In Reply To: **TTT Music for Middle-earth: Fun** — aMagpie
    a bit of Beatle fun on main...
    can be found on Main.

    LiJunn posted this picture for the Weekly Caption Contest submitted by Aerlinn.

    Curious offered up this caption

    Elijah begins his Bed-in to protest New Line's decision about The Hobbit.  PJ thanks him for his support.

    Which is, of course, a reference to John Lennon and Yoko Ono's bed-in for peace.

    That kicked off a Tolkien/Beatle frenzy that was quite satisfying to this old Beatles' fan.

    Baby, you can wear my ring ... if you wanna be a King ... ; — luinfalathiel 
    “I once had a Ring, or should I say... — N.E. Brigand 
    Pelennor Rigby... argh, so many Beatlicious puns! — Greenwood Hobbit 
    sings “All we are saying ... Is Give PJ a Chance! ... All we are saying ...” — Elvenesque 
    Great song by The Plastic Frodo Band! — Darkstone
    I am the Hobbit coo-coo-ca-choo — Annael 
    gratuitous repost — Aerlinn 
    Pelennor is in my ears and in my eyes.... — Darkstone
    Cormallen Fields Forever ... — Elvenesque 
    “Weta be, Weta be...” — weaver 
    All You Need Is Love and a Reforged Sword — Aerlinn
    “Will you still need me, will you still feed me, when I’m eleventy-one?” — Darkstone 
    Ear’ndil in the Sky with Silmarils — Annael 
    The long and winding Road goes ever on and on. — L. Ron Halfelven 
    bangbang Gimli’s Silver Axehead came down... — Aerlinn
    Legolas Greenleaf, picks up the lembas in the Citadel where a wedding has been — Elvenesque 
    I Dig a Bill the Pony — Aerlinn 
    While my Gondor gently weeps... — Darkstone 
    You really got a ‘Ring” hold on me — A’mael 
    “Mean Mister Maggot...” — Darkstone 
    Let it Bree ... — Elvenesque 
    Isn’t it good?  Fimbrethil wood.... — Darkstone 
    Dwarves “I Me Me Mine” — Aerlinn 
    “Westmarch book writer....” — Darkstone
    Sgt. Pippin’s lonely hobbit band — grammaboodawg
    You Won’t See Me — Darkstone 
    He’s got a trinket to hide — Wynnie
    BlackWraith sitting in the dead of the night   — grammaboodawg
    Baby, you can wear my ring ... if you wanna be a King ... ;)   — luinfalathiel
    “I once had a Ring, or should I say... — N.E. Brigand
    Pelennor Rigby... argh, so many Beatlicious puns!  — Greenwood Hobbit
    the White Hand of Saruman Album ... - Elvenesque
    the White Tree Album ... - Elvenesque

    weaver  12/08/06 
    In Reply To: **TTT Music for Middle-earth: Fun** — aMagpie
    "Fun" , stress and creativity...

    Yep, an attack of silliness and giggles does seem to go with the process of creating something, especially after long hours on it.  I do think it's a great stress release and that's why it tends to happen. Plus, it  bonds you with the other people, since you end up retelling that kind of story over and over again and laughing each time.

    I may be naive, but I think the commentaries are pretty genuinine -- these people really got to know each other well over that time period and so it becomes safe to tell stories about each other like that.

    Plus, a lot of the folks they interview are not actors, so they are just talking, as they would about an experience. 

    The way the commentaries are assembled is probably a bit of creative packaging designed to "sell" the films.  But that's the editors choice.  The stuff people say seems unscripted and real to me.

    I love the Beatles story with Howard Shore being afraid to cross the street.  I can relate.  That ranks right up there with Sean Bean being afraid to fly.

    Jackson, too, seems to be pretty spontaneous about doing fun things that interest him personally at times, not thinking things through and just going with them; it's a counterbalance, perhaps, to having to keep all those details lined up in your head all the time when you film three movies at once.

    He was an only child, and I think that may be a factor -- he's used to creating his own fun and to just doing it, even if doesn't make sense to other people.  There's a big difference between my youngest son and his older brothers and so he's kind of like an only kid -- and he does tend to go around creating his own fun just for the heck of it, and not expecting or caring what the rest of us think about it!

    aMagpie 12/9/2006
    In Reply To: "Fun" , stress and creativity... — weaver
    I pretty much agree
    These were the first commentaries I ever watched and I believed they were all completely sincere. Since then, I've seen many other movies do the same thing. Were they doing them before and I didn't know it? (I bought a DVD player so I could play FOTR when it came out.) Or were they copying the success of LOTR? Whatever, I see similiar sorts of statements everywhere now and I don't know if everybody can be that excited and that convinced at the genius of their director/fellow cast.. whatever.

    But I do mostly believe these interviews. I suspect Howard is very tactful and would never let a whine escape his lips if someone overruled him on music. Nonetheless, I believe the passion I hear and if I believe he was that passionate, I believe the others could be too.

    I once had the giggling fit of a lifetime. It lasted an entire weekend with a few women friends at a Morris Ale (think: convention). We were in this state of ectasy brought on by our complete willingness to collapse into giggles anytime someone said: Upsula, naked, downtown or teenage girls - of course, the only people who said those words were us. Sometimes we couldn't breathe or stand up we were giggling so hard. (It's not as naughty as it sounds. It was prompted by a story someone related about saunas in downtown Upsula, Sweden) Not only did I have a magical time - bonding in a very intimate way with these ladies - I wanted to recreate it the next Ale. Alas, I was reminded that magic is not orchestrated and I will never have 'that' experience again.

    Someone in a previous thread quoted PJ admitting to a bone-tiring, mind-numbing exhaustion from these movies. I'm sure others had similar experiences. I wonder how much they are glad it's over and how much they yearn for that experience they're likely never to have again?

    Your thoughts on PJ are interesting considering the current thread on main about the art he produced for Netflix. I'll link to the thread if anyone here has missed it.

    PJ and Orlando design Netflix envelopes - TORn thread on main

    grammaboodawg   12/12/2006
    In Reply To: **TTT Music for Middle-earth: Fun** — aMagpie
    Wanna see a picture?

    I've had these lying around and thought this was a great time to share them!

    I totally agree there was an element of exhaustion/hysteria going on... but I also think it's classic Peter!  He pushes everyone beyond their last limit, and they always come through.  Peter also knows how to have fun!

    I'm so grateful he had this opportunity.  The road, the studio, and the gong!  The man worked himself 10 times more than he asked of anyone else, so for this highlight of everything he loves about the Beatles coming true is a joy!

    aMagpie   12/12/2006
    In Reply To: Wanna see a picture? — grammaboodawg, 12/12 @ 9:23 (1/2)
    Way Cool!
    Just the other day I was sorting through old magazines I had collected... ripping out the pertinent pages and throwing away the rest (I may be a magpie but I can toss with the best of them) and I ran across the Hobbits on Abbey Road. My obsessive gene must have been recessive that day because I never even entertained the thought of working up a comparison (which is actually a comforting thought) but I am so glad you did.


    I also thought it was interesting that I posted this message on Friday only to learn later it was the anniversary of John Lennon's death. I remember that day as clear as a bell as, just the night before, I'd had a long conversation with a friend about him and his lifestyle choices. I really admired his taking time out for his family. She woke me up the next day with the news and I was saddened and stunned. At work, a co-worker broke down when an old friend just walked in, handed her a rose and walked out again. I don't think the other co-workers really got what was up with us.

    grammaboodawg  12/12/2006
    In Reply To: Way Cool! — aMagpie
    *goosebumps*  Whoa
    A subconscious tribute.  I remember it well, too.  It was as devastating as any other assassination in our history.



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