Sunday, December 25, 2011

Elijah Wood: 'I was thrilled to play Frodo Baggins in The Hobbit'

Since Lord of the Rings, the actor has avoided big-budget epics. But now he's reprising his hobbit role and starring in a lavish Treasure Island adaption


Elijah Wood
Elijah Wood: 'It was weird being back'. Photograph: Victoria Will/AP

  1. The Hobbit
  2. Production year: 2011
  3. Country: Rest of the world
  4. Directors: Peter Jackson
  5. Cast: Andy Serkis, Benedict Cumberbatch, Cate Blanchett, Christopher Lee, Elijah Wood, Martin Freeman, Orlando Bloom, Sir Ian McKellen, Stephen Fry
  6. More on this film
Is that the Ring? Around the ring finger of Elijah Wood's right hand is a band of silver with strange lettering on it – probably Elvish. As a reward for his lead hobbiting services in the Lord of the Rings trilogy, director Peter Jackson reportedly gave Wood the original Ring. And he still wears it. Doesn't he?
"No. This is Hebrew, " he says, twirling the ring around his finger. "I know, it has a kind of a similar look to it."
"I do have the Ring, but it's not inscribed, and it's gold. But I don't think it's real gold – gold-plated. But, no, I don't wear it. I keep it in a little box." Not on a chain around his neck? "I carried it for a long time," he says with mock solemnity.
It would be easy to imagine that in the years since Wood finally hurled that infernal ring into Mount Doom, he has still been burdened by it, dragging himself around an indifferent movie industry where nobody can see him as anything other than the hairy-footed little hero of a colossally successful movie trilogy. He's not at all like Frodo in real life, even if those big blue eyes still look like a special effect. He's dressed in standard hipster/skater attire – plaid shirt, skinny jeans – and he seems relaxed and chatty, often breaking into a bemused, falsetto laugh. If the fate of Star Wars' Mark Hamill ever awaited him, he seems to have avoided it, largely by doing as many un-Tolkeinesque things as possible.
"My immediate feeling after the first Rings movie came out was that I couldn't conceive of doing anything massive again," he says. "So the first thing I worked on was a movie barely anybody saw, called Ash Wednesday, and one of my reasons for doing it was because it was really tiny. I was only in makeup for four minutes a day!"
More at the Guardian.

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