Last week, the theme and set of The Colbert Report was transformed into Hobbiton for a promotional push in anticipation of this December’s The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, by Peter Jackson. Turns out that political satirist Stephen Colbert is genuine, bona fide J. R. R. Tolkien super-geek. During the filming of the new series in New Zealand (Jackson has split The Hobbit into a 3 film series and will release one per year), Colbert and his family were invited to the set, and rumor has it that he will have a cameo role in one of the films! While on set Colbert won the Tolkien trivia challenge against the cast and crew, even beating out the crew’s resident expert.
The 4 episode Hobbit Week on The Colbert Report featured 4 interviews included actors Sir Ian McKellen (Gandalf), Martin Freeman (Bilbo), and the world’s premier performance-capture artist Andy Serkis (Gollum). On the final day of Hobbit Week Colbert interviewed Peter Jackson.
Here are all 4 episodes and interviews!
Sir Ian McKellen asserts Gandalf’s superiority over his other popular film role, Magneto from the X-Men series. McKellen also made headlines on this episode by reaffirming that he is gay.
Stephen Colbert smokes some pipeweed (of the Old Toby variety I presume), and chats with Bilbo Baggins actor Martin Freeman (of The Office and Sherlock Holmes notoriety).
Colbert hops around with Gollum actor Andy Serkis, who describes what goes into his patented performance-capture acting (as seen in the 2005 film King Kong, and as Caesar in Rise of the Planet of the Apes). In this episode we also see a clip from the highly anticipated Riddles in the Dark scene where Bilbo first meets Gollum, and finds The One Ring in the dark caves of the Misty Mountains.
On the final day of Hobbit Week, Colbert talks with the big man Peter Jackson about the wonder of filming in his native New Zealand (remember MissMalini’s official LOTR tour in NZ?!) , and about the revolutionary 48 frames per second camera style used in The Hobbit series. Colbert, who has seen the new film in its entirety, says that the new shooting style is so lifelike that you feel like you’re in Middle Earth!
Here are some more pics of the Hobbit Week set on The Colbert Report.
The India release of The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey is set for December 14th.