The Hobbit movies

The Lord of the Rings, directed by Peter Jackson, was one of the most successful film series in history, and now Peter has returned to Middle Earth to Direct “The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey”. A long-awaited teaser trailer for the film has been released online.

Once again filmed in New Zealand, It starts with Ian Holm as the old hobbit Bilbo writing a letter to his young nephew Frodo, which says: ‘My dear Frodo, you asked me once if I had told you everything there was to know about my adventures. While I can honestly say I have told you the truth, I may not have told you all of it.’ It then cuts to a young Bilbo, played by The Office star Martin Freeman, who is approached by Sir Ian McKellan’s Gandalf who invites him on an adventure. At first Gandalf is rebuffed by the home loving halfling, who tells him he is too attached to the Shire to comtemplate such a journey. However he soon changes his mind when is introduced to 13 dwarf companions, and told he is the ideal person for the job.

The film then follows The adventures of Bilbo, wizard Gandalf and a company of 12 dwarves, led by Thorin Oakenshield,  as they embark on a dangerous mission to The Lonely Mountain, to recover a sacred artefact known as the Arkenstone from a fearsome dragon named Smaug. Along the way Bilbo meets Elf Queen Galadriel (Cate Blanchett) and Elf Lord Elrond (Hugo Weaving) and passes through the powerful citadel of Rivendell, as well as encountering many hazards including Wolves, Giant Spiders, imprisonment and a certain sneaky ring owner named Gollum (Andy Serkis) who asks Frodo ‘Bagginses, what is a Bagginses? Precious.’

Along with Martin Freeman, Sir Ian McKellen, Andy Serkis, Cate Blanchett and Hugo Weaving The Hobbit also stars Barry Humphries, a.k.a. Dame Edna as the Goblin King, and Evangeline Lilly as beautiful elf Tauriel. Orlando Bloom also makes a brief cameo as Legolas. I also thought the music from The Lord of The Rings by Howard Shore was wonderful, so I’m hoping that the music for the Hobbit is just as good.

The Hobbit has been split into two films, The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey and The Hobbit: There and Back Again, and the first part The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey is released in 2012. HERE IS THE OFFICIAL TRAILER

Harry Potter Movie set on Display

The Harry Potter set at Leavesden Studios in Hertfordshire is set to be open to British muggles in March 2012. It features landmarks from the Harry Potter series such as Dumbledore’s office at Hogwarts and Ollivander’s wand shop in Diagon Alley. The 150,000 square foot exhibition is described as a ‘magical opportunity’ for fans to see what went into making the films. It will be fascinatinge to see the genius and ability of the people who made these sets, and may inspire young people to get involved in the film industry and hopefully encourage people to stay in London.

As well as Diagon Alley and Dumbledore’s office, muggles will also be able to walk the stone floor of the Great Hall at Hogwarts and even sneak into the Gryffindor common room as well as see the cupboard under the stairs in Privet Drive. Nearly 100 of the original painters and carpenters from the films have been involved in putting together the sets, which all have tiny details that you may not notice in the films but when you walk through them you can see for yourself the work that’s gone into them.

You could also visit Glenfinnan Viaduct on the The West Highland Railway, which featured in a substantial sequence during Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets, When The Hogwarts Express crossed the viaduct. It also appeared in two subsequent Harry Potter films, The Prisoner of Azkaban and The Order of the Phoenix. It runs from Fort William to Mallaig, in Scotland, and is Located at the top of Loch Shiel in the West Highlands of Scotland. It was originally built between 1897 and 1901 overlooking the Glenfinnan Monument and the waters of Loch Shiel.

I reckon GWR no. 5972 “Olton Hall”, (A.K.A Hogwarts Express) the 4-6-0 Hall class locomotive is also well worth seeing, She acheived fame after being used to haul the “Hogwarts Express” in the Harry Potter series of films. Originally Built in April 1937 at Swindon railway works for the Great Western Railway, she was first allocated to Neath, South Wales. In August 1950 she was moved by British Railways to Carmarthen. After being fitted with a three row superheater at Swindon, she was allocated to Plymouth Laira TMD. Her last shed allocation was to Cardiff East Dock, before she was withdrawn in December 1963, and acquired by Woodham Brothers, Barry, Vale of Glamorgan for scrap in May 1964. In May 1981 Woodham Brothers sold the locomotive to Procor (UK) Ltd in Wakefield, and she left as the 125th departure from Barry.

She is usually based at the Shildon Locomotion Museum, which is an Annexe of the National Railway Museum, in York, because Shildon is Often considered to be the “cradle of the railways” after The Stockton and Darlington Railway first established its workshops there in 1825. in late 2011 the Loco could be found on static display in Hyde Park, London in her ‘Hogwarts’ red livery.