J.R.R. Tolkien's Son Criticizes Peter Jackson's THE HOBBIT & LORD OF THE RINGS

J.R.R. Tolkien's Son Criticizes Peter Jackson's THE HOBBIT & LORD OF THE RINGS

For the first time ever, Christopher Tolkien, the son of J.R.R. Tolkien, has spoken out about Peter Jackson's film adaptations of his father's literary masterpieces. Hit the jump to check it out.

Christopher Tolkien just dropped his pants and took a big dump on Peter Jackson. In his first ever press interview Christopher tells Le Monde (Via World Crunch) that his family has no interest in meeting the director that helped make Tolkien and his books a household name.

Below is an excerpt from World Crunch's article:
"I could write a book on the idiotic requests I have received," sighs Christopher Tolkien. He is trying to protect the literary work from the three-ring circus that has developed around it. In general, the Tolkien Estate refuses almost all requests. "Normally, the executors of the estate want to promote a work as much as they can," notes Adam Tolkien, the son of Christopher and Baillie. "But we are just the opposite. We want to put the spotlight on that which is not Lord of the Rings."

Invited to meet Peter Jackson, the Tolkien family preferred not to. Why? "They eviscerated the book by making it an action movie for young people aged 15 to 25," Christopher says regretfully. "And it seems that The Hobbit will be the same kind of film."

This divorce has been systematically driven by the logic of Hollywood. "Tolkien has become a monster, devoured by his own popularity and absorbed into the absurdity of our time," Christopher Tolkien observes sadly. "The chasm between the beauty and seriousness of the work, and what it has become, has overwhelmed me. The commercialization has reduced the aesthetic and philosophical impact of the creation to nothing. There is only one solution for me: to turn my head away."


The Hobbit is an upcoming two-part epic fantasy film directed by Peter Jackson. It is a film adaptation of the 1937 novel of the same name by J. R. R. Tolkien and prequel to The Lord of the Rings film trilogy. Jackson, director of The Lord of the Rings, returns as director of the film and also serves as producer and co-writer. The film will star Martin Freeman as Bilbo Baggins and Richard Armitage, known for playing Lucas North in the BBC drama series Spooks, as Thorin Oakenshield. Several actors from Jackson's The Lord of the Rings film trilogy will reprise their roles, including Ian McKellen, Andy Serkis, Hugo Weaving, Cate Blanchett, Christopher Lee, Ian Holm, Elijah Wood, and Orlando Bloom. Additionally, composer Howard Shore, who wrote the score for The Lord of the Rings film trilogy, has confirmed his role in both parts of the film project. The two parts, entitled The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey and The Hobbit: There and Back Again, are being filmed back to back and are currently in production in New Zealand; principal photography began on March 21, 2011. They are scheduled to be released on December 14, 2012 and December 13, 2013, respectively.

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Filed Under "Fantasy" 1/9/2013 Source: worldcrunch
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Hellsing - 1/9/2013, 10:05 AM
say what? slightly confused the movies much more than just action. My favorite moment in the whole movie trilogy is in fellowship when Aragorn refuses to take the ring from Frodo when its offered to him. That moment was even more bad ass the any of the "action".
hayyam - 1/9/2013, 10:08 AM
You published the book Unfinished Tales and you criticize Peter Jackson. Get out here.
ManofSteel23 - 1/9/2013, 10:15 AM
Im pretty sure millions of people who would have watched the films would have bought the books and read them,so whats he [frick]ing bitching about,I wouldnt read the books because they just seem to complicated for me,so he should be glad people get to see tolkiens creation through the books or films
WellDrawn - 1/9/2013, 10:20 AM
Sounds like this guy would get along with Alan Moore.
Dedpool - 1/9/2013, 10:22 AM
Okay that was a bit unfair to say. The books have action, and Tolkien chose not to focus on it, but books and movies move at a different pace. And what was described briefly in a book, needs to fill some space in the film. The story beats are all there, the character development as well, and Jackson took great care in what was put together. Jackson's Middle Earth Adaptations are as close to the books as you're going to get. Personally, I feel the films improved on some stuff, and the books were kinda dry and slow. Now before anyone grabs a noose to hang me, I'm an avid reader, and I don't need tons of action to keep me interested, but LoTR is presented more as a history than a story and the story suffers a little. The films in my opinion fixed that issue. I've read David Eddings' Belgariad and Mallorean series and they are to me, a more fun LoTR type story.
Fantine - 1/9/2013, 10:23 AM
These movies must have generated billions for the estate, why they moaning? Hate pretentious pricks.

Ceejay - 1/9/2013, 10:23 AM
@WellDrawn - LMAO!
sexfoodcomics - 1/9/2013, 10:23 AM
This guy is a moron. Books don't translate to film word for word or even tonally, especially a Tolkien book. If anything these movies have driven more people to go back a read the books. He must of asked the studio for something and didn't get it so now he is a whiny brat. Shame on this fool.
ToTheManInTheColdSweat - 1/9/2013, 10:24 AM
lmbo @welldrawn. comment of the day
SuperSomething616 - 1/9/2013, 10:25 AM
What a dick!!
OdinsBeard - 1/9/2013, 10:26 AM
lol boo freakin hoo...
Pauul - 1/9/2013, 10:26 AM
Didn't one of Tolkien's grandsons have a cameo in Return of the Kings?

Yep, just did a check, Royd Tolkien does appear in Return of the King and is the great-grandson of Tolkien.
AnungUnRama - 1/9/2013, 10:27 AM
Maybe he's pissed becouse they only got paid one for the movie rights and don't get share of the billions of box office and merchandise dollars???
SwingsetKnight - 1/9/2013, 10:28 AM
Speaking as someone who actually read LotR (and the Hobbit, Silmarillion, and pretty much everything else CT has put out after JRRT's death), he does have a valid point in that the films probably don't convey anything of the nuances Tolkien was primarily concerned with. The battle sequence in Moria from Fellowship, for instance, was in the book over in a couple paragraphs. It was basically just "Aragorn slew many, Boromir also", then a quick cameo of Sam killing a goblin, and we're done. Tolkien was much more invested in the culture and romantic sensibility of his imagined world. Jackson didn't put that across in the same way, and I can understand CT's frustration.

At the same time, though, I think that he's approaching this the wrong way, coming off as petulant and ungrateful (particularly given what I'm sure are very lucrative upticks in sales for the Tolkien family books). If he's unhappy with the adaptations, he could express himself in a way that's less all-or-nothing. Yes, it's probably true that Jackson wanted to make the films action-packed to appeal to the set of...how shall we put it?...less literary individuals. We can call that pandering to the lowbrows if we really want to denigrate and sneer, but when you look at how the LotR films did, in terms of box office and awards, it's clear something from the series is getting through favorably. As adaptations go, this was probably as good as it could have been.
StarkRaving - 1/9/2013, 10:33 AM
Christopher Tolkien said this in a July 5, 2012 interview. It's no longer news.
TheAbomination - 1/9/2013, 10:34 AM
Somebody call the wahmbulance.
LOL - 1/9/2013, 10:37 AM
Part of Peter Jackson's focus was to bring J.R.R. Tolkien's works to a wider audience, in that he succeeded. Those who never picked up the books are now curious and reading them. As whiny as CT is, he should still acknowledge the fact that his father's works are now universally known and loved by a whole new generation of fans worldwide. We can understand some of his complaints but he comes across as an ungrateful SOB.

Also, books to film translation are NEVER going to be 100 PERCENT accurate. It's called "pacing" and director's prerogative.
StarkAnthony - 1/9/2013, 10:37 AM
SwingsetKnight - I know you were weren't trying to say so, but where a book can jump over combat with "they fought" a movie can't do that quite so well without showing it. The Moria fight was drawn out longer than it had to be considering what was in the book, but they did have to show a real fight.
retr0g0dfather - 1/9/2013, 10:39 AM
NeoBaggins - 1/9/2013, 10:40 AM
Piece of shit looking for attention. The films honor the source material more so than any film adaptation I've ever seen. That's hard to do I'm sure. And if the "family" isn't interested in meeting Jackson, I wonder if it has anything to do with a douche ring-leader spreading this sentiment to the family. I bet he tells them WHY they should be mad lol. I'm sure it's thoroughly annoying.

Too late, bitch. THE DESOLATION OF SMUAG up next!

RamonSuarez - 1/9/2013, 10:41 AM
I agree. Jackson's interpretation was terribly superficial, especially by the third movie.
Colton - 1/9/2013, 10:41 AM
Tolkien was much more interested in using the Lord Of The Rings trilogy to show how 'great' Catholicism was. And with that I say thank feck that doesn't come through at all really in the movies. Also, those books in a lot of places are nothing but descriptions of scenery.
Again if they followed the movie as closely as C. Tolkien wanted we'd have a whole lot crap for a trilogy.
I'm a Tolkien fan but this guy is deluded to a certain extent.
Colton - 1/9/2013, 10:42 AM
*followed the book rather.
goatman - 1/9/2013, 10:47 AM
I don't understand this attitude among creators. They want people to get some profound sense of understanding from their work. They garner many fans who do just that. But then when it's adapted into something more mainstream, and generates even more fans who would otherwise never have known about the property, they panic and say it's ruined.

Fans of Tolkien's books will be fans of Tolkien's books no matter how many movies, games or mouse pads are made of the franchise.

Collect your check and feel content knowing that Tolkien created something that is special to a lot of people.

Personally, though, while I understand Tolkien's influence on culture, particularly sub-culture, I find the books, and the movies, boring as hell.
fullmetal - 1/9/2013, 10:53 AM
I loved LOTR trilogy and don't agree with him on that BUT AS FAR AS THE HOBBIT, I AGREE WHOLE HEARTEDLY. I've never seen a film butchured so purposely before in my life!

It's such a shame that "The Hobbit" ended up being a drawn-out, bloated, boring mess that lacks compelling characters and an engaging story. This film is a complete and utter travesty. I had a really bad feeling about this movie when i saw the trailer, even though i loved the LOTR. When i saw the trailer i feared that the film makers and studio were milking this franchise by turning The Hobbit into a trilogy and that the final products would be filled with TOO MUCH FILLER and that it would ruin the movie.

Sorry to say people, i was right....The first half of this film feels like a collage of deleted scenes that should have stayed deleted or waited until the extended cut dvd.

I usually hate those people that text during films but my God, was i happy to have my cell phone during that first horrible, boring, monotonous first hour. THERE WAS NO REASON TO MAKE THIS FILM 3 HOURS!!!!! The studio is just trying to make a buck and as a result the integrity of the film suffers. There's too much filler in this film...too much "easter eggs" that remind you of how great LOTR were.

They might as well run a text prompt on the bottom of the screen like the news channels saying:

"Remember LOTR? that was so great. We're trying to recreate the same feeling again, so we will be making lots of meaningless references to those films throughout that have nothing to do with advancing the plot for this movie. Hey, that dwarf king dude is kinda like Aragon, huh? Hey look, it's Galadriel and Elrond. Doesn't this scene feel like the one from Fellowship of the Ring, when Galadriel gave Frodo the gifts and elf bread? REMEMBER LOTR?! THIS FILM IS PART OF THAT UNIVERSE!!!




The first half of the film is so boring that by the time they go on the adventure..i forgot why the hell their even setting out on this journey...and i've read the book!

"Why the hell are these dwarf idiots so important and why are we going on this journey? OH YEAH! BECAUSE OF THE DRAGON AND THEIR GOLD" I had this thought like 3 times during the screening.

Each LOTR film can stand on it's own but not this boring piece of crap. And it has nothing to do with the Hobbit book, which i love. This film should have been one 3 and half hour epic film, not 3 films. It's ridiculous!! People talk down a lot about the Star Wars prequels but I'd watch Phantom Menace any day over this horrid piece of boring junk.

The Hobbit is 287 pages. So it;'s completely idiotic and pure greed for money that they made this into 3, 3 hour films. In the book, the Dwarves have left Bilbo's and Bilbo runs out on his adventure in 17 pages. Peter Jackson takes a HOUR to get the journey started with a whole half hour of "put that down, don't break that, leave that alone, will you stop, no you can't do that, what are you doing, please stop!"

STOP, PLEASE! WE GET IT ALREADY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

The dwarfs are unwanted by Bilbo, stop hitting it over the head just to fill up time!

The bizarre, unfunny, slapstick humor is painful. This involves snot jokes, burping, poop hair, and lame one-liners. Don't give me the "it's based on a children's book" crap. Sure, the source material was written for children but I'm talking about the movie. Adding all this stupid humor really messes with the tone; it doesn't feel like it belongs in the LOTR universe which "The Hobbit" is trying so hard replicate. The film will go from trying to be epic to pathetic gags. It doesn't work. I don't mind a little humor occasionally but this is just overdone and it makes the film feel very unbalanced.

Radagast's involvement is pointless and his bunny sled is ridiculous. We also get to see Saruman and Galadriel in a boring scene that has absolutely no relevance to the main narrative. Wait, what exactly is "The Hobbit" about again? Apparently Jackson is trying to make connections with LOTR, but "Fellowship of the Ring" already explains past events pretty well. Seriously, all the LOTR fanboy pleasing scenes could have been left out (including Frodo). But no, we need them in order to have enough material for the trilogy. Not good.

And I understand that Jackson is taking material from the appendices of LOTR. I wouldn't have a problem with this if all these extra scenes actually advanced the plot. But the White Council just talks and they never decide to act on anything. Also, that scene has NOTHING to do with the dwarves reclaiming their homeland. At least in "Fellowship" the plot makes major advancements but in "The Hobbit" the story hardly goes anywhere. BORING!

For the first 20 minutes we get all this old Bilbo recollecting his adventures and seeing Elijah Wood and all these unnecessary references to LOTR just to buy time to make this 3 hours. They try too hard to tie this film into LOTR, just in hope that some of its greatness will rub off.

The first 10 minutes of the film goes like this: T... H... E...

The next 10 go like this: H...o...b...

The next 10 go like this b....i....t...

30 minutes just for the titles!!!

The next half hour is Bilbo picking up a pencil.....

THEN IT TAKES ANOTHER 30 MINUTES JUST FOR HIM TO WRITE "In a hole in the ground there lived a hobbit...." THE FIRST WORDS IN THE BOOK!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Greed for cash ruined this story. Period. I won't even bother to see the next two. And like an idiot I gave away the 1977 animated film because I THOUGHT for sure this would blow that away. Boy, was I wrong. Time to place my Amazon order for that again...

I will admit that the scenes with Golumn and the Goblin King were great but scenes don't make a good movie
PanicSwitch - 1/9/2013, 10:53 AM

"Tolkien has become a monster, devoured by his own popularity and absorbed into the absurdity of our time,"

Perhaps the most pretentious statement of nothing I have ever had the displeasure of reading.
Super12 - 1/9/2013, 10:53 AM
Ok, people, feel free to disagree with Christopher Tolkein but have some respect. This man is not some prick looking for attention. He inherited an unprecidented responsiblity of keeping the legacy of his father intact, and he had done so brilliantly through painstakingly going through his father's unpublished writings and turning them into canonized publications ala the Silmarillion, Children of Hurin, etc.

I agree he should give much more credit to Peter Jackson than he is, but also this man spent his life safeguarding this treasure only to now see it rampantly commercialized and cheapened in a way (arguably not by the movies themselves, but all the extra-cirricular fluff like video games, toys, etc.). I can see why he would lash out. And granted, he's getting as old as dirt so he's at the age where everything that is different is terrible anyways. Cut him some slack folks and have some respect for him.
jasonicus - 1/9/2013, 10:54 AM
What a pretentious, arrogant, douchebag.
ThePowerCosmic - 1/9/2013, 10:56 AM
How about he tries writing a book or movie instead of doing nothing but living off the Tolkien estate and bitching like a little girl. I would smack this no talent dick bird.
SiriusC - 1/9/2013, 10:59 AM
The Hobbit was originally a children's fantasy novel. So maybe 15-25 is a step up? I'd love to know if he even attempted to watch any of the movies. Otherwise, he just sounds like he's being pretentious for the sake of being pretentious.

Is there a shit ton of marketing, toys, & other products stemming from these films? Sure. But the films hold so much value for so many people. What comes to mind right away was the solemn prepping for battle in Two Towers. To have no choice but to accept what lay ahead of you, impossible as the outcome may seem.
AlexDeLarge87 - 1/9/2013, 11:01 AM
Movies Jackson made are alot more faithful to the books than many other movie adaptions.

Extended versions specially bring alot more to the films.

When you´re making a movie adaption and specially about gigantic books like LOTR its a fact its not going to be totally identical.
SwingsetKnight - 1/9/2013, 11:02 AM
@ StarkAnthony: Ha, true, but when a simple scuffle in a room is turned into falling rubble, attacking trolls, and collapsing staircases, I can see how CT might feel the chill in his old bones.
CatofCreativity - 1/9/2013, 11:07 AM
He sure enjoys all those checks they get that allows him to sit around in his ivory tower and pass judgement on things he knows little about.
Super12 - 1/9/2013, 11:07 AM
@thePowerCosmic - you know nothing about Christopher Tolkien. Look him up before you open your mouth and you won't look like such a fool.
Fogs - 1/9/2013, 11:08 AM
Christopher Tolkien has always been a dick. The only really good thing he did was compiling the writings for The Silmarillion.
gaikinger - 1/9/2013, 11:12 AM
went into this movie with serious reservations....came out loving it. i actually could not get into the book and put it down as was the case with Lord of the Rings. that being said i love and have read all the books in the Songs of Ice and Fire series by R R Martin or to those who cant read....Game of Thrones. Tolken spawn seems like a big dick.
AlexDeLarge87 - 1/9/2013, 11:13 AM
But he has his right to opinion and probably has his reasons why he thinks that way. Who we are to judge him.
Fogs - 1/9/2013, 11:17 AM
AlexDeLarge87 - true. My opinion is that he's a dick, though :)
plasticman - 1/9/2013, 11:23 AM
I wonder if Hugo Weaving would agree with him. Being of a higher artistic level than the films he has been attached to.
Jollem - 1/9/2013, 11:26 AM
the movie doesn't change the books, sir. enjoy another look at the work. if they were done as a 9 or 10 seasons t.v. show it probably would not be so "action-y" and involve more of the huge story
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