28 February 2015

Today in Middle-earth: February 28

The Brothers Hildebrandt
On this day in the year 3019 of the Third Age:
  • Éomer overtakes the Orcs just outside Fangorn Forest
  • Meriadoc and Pippin escape and meet Treebeard
  • The Rohirrim attack at sunrise and destroy the orcs
  • Frodo descends from the Emyn Muil and meets Gollum
  • Faramir sees the funeral boat of Boromir

27 February 2015

Today in Middle-earth: February 27

On this day in the year 3019 of the Third Age: 
  • Aragorn reaches the west-cliff at sunrise
  • Éomer, against Théoden's orders, sets out from Eastfold about midnight to pursue the Orcs

26 February 2015

Today in Middle-earth: February 26

The Death of Boromir by Peter Xavier Price
On this day in the year 3019 of the Third Age, Boromir is slain; Merry and Pippin are captured; Frodo and Samwise enter the eastern Emyn Muil; Aragorn sets out in pursuit of the Orcs at evening; Éomer hears of the descent of the Orc-band from the Emyn Muil.

25 February 2015

Today in Middle-earth: February 25

Pillars of the Kings by the Brothers Hildebrandt
 On this day in the year 3019 of the Third Age, the Company pass the Argonath and camp at Parth Galen; The Battle of the Fords of Isen occurs on this day; and Théodred son of Théoden is slain.

17 February 2015

Press Release: WBHE Announces "The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies" on Blu-ray

Burbank, CA, February 17, 2015 – The adventures of Bilbo Baggins come to an epic conclusion in “The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies,” a production of New Line Cinema and Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Pictures (MGM), arriving onto Blu-ray 3D Combo Pack, Blu-ray Combo Pack, DVD and Digital HD on March 24 from Warner Bros. Home Entertainment. From Academy Award®-winning* filmmaker Peter Jackson comes “The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies,” the third in a trilogy of films adapting the enduringly popular masterpiece The Hobbit, by J.R.R. Tolkien. 

In “The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies,” Ian McKellen returns as Gandalf the Grey, with Martin Freeman in the central role of Bilbo Baggins, and Richard Armitage as Thorin Oakenshield. The international ensemble cast is led by Evangeline Lilly, Luke Evans, Lee Pace, Benedict Cumberbatch, Billy Connolly, James Nesbitt, Ken Stott, Aidan Turner, Dean O’Gorman, Graham McTavish, Stephen Fry and Ryan Cage. The film also stars Cate Blanchett, Ian Holm, Christopher Lee, Hugo Weaving, Orlando Bloom, Mikael Persbrandt, Sylvester McCoy, Peter Hambleton, John Callen, Mark Hadlow, Jed Brophy, William Kircher, Stephen Hunter, Adam Brown, John Bell, Manu Bennett and John Tui. 

The screenplay for “The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies” is by Fran Walsh & Philippa Boyens & Peter Jackson & Guillermo del Toro, based on the novel by J.R.R. Tolkien. Jackson also produced the film, together with Carolynne Cunningham, Zane Weiner and Fran Walsh. The executive producers are Alan Horn, Toby Emmerich, Ken Kamins and Carolyn Blackwood, with Philippa Boyens and Eileen Moran serving as co-producers. 

“The Hobbit” Trilogy tells a continuous story set in Middle-earth 60 years before “The Lord of the Rings,” which Academy Award®-winning filmmaker Peter Jackson and his team brought to the big screen in the blockbuster trilogy that culminated with the Oscar®-winning “The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King.”

The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies” will be available on Blu-ray 3D Combo Pack for $44.95, Blu-ray Combo Pack for $44.95 and 2-disc DVD Special Edition for $28.98. The Blu-ray 3D Combo Pack features the theatrical version of the film in 3D hi-definition, hi-definition and standard definition; the Blu-ray Combo Pack features the theatrical version of the film in hi-definition on Blu-ray; and the DVD features the theatrical version in standard definition.  All versions include a digital version of the movie in Digital HD with UltraViolet. Fans can also own “The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies” via purchase from digital retailers.


The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies” brings to an epic conclusion the adventure of Bilbo Baggins (Martin Freeman), Thorin Oakenshield (Richard Armitage) and the Company of Dwarves. The Dwarves of Erebor have reclaimed the vast wealth of their homeland, but now must face the consequences of having unleashed the terrifying Dragon, Smaug, upon the defenseless men, women and children of Lake-town. 

As he succumbs to dragon-sickness, the King Under the Mountain, Thorin Oakenshield, sacrifices friendship and honor in search for the legendary Arkenstone. Unable to help Thorin see reason, Bilbo is driven to make a desperate and dangerous choice, not knowing that even greater perils lie ahead. An ancient enemy has returned to Middle-earth. Sauron, the Dark Lord, has sent forth legions of Orcs in a stealth attack upon the Lonely Mountain. 

As darkness converges on their escalating conflict, the races of Dwarves, Elves and Men must decide – unite or be destroyed. Bilbo finds himself fighting for his life and the lives of his friends as five great armies go to war. 


“The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies” Blu-ray 3D Combo Pack, Blu-ray Combo Pack and 2-Disc DVD Special Edition contain the following special features:
·         Recruiting the Five Armies
·         Completing Middle-earth
·         The Last Goodbye: Behind the Scenes
·         The Last Goodbye Music Video
·         New Zealand: Home of Middle-earth, Part 3

Today in Middle-earth: February 17

The Great River by Joe Gilronan
On this day in the year 3019 of the Third Age, the Fellowship begins their journey along the Great River:
"They started again before the day was broad. Not that most of the Company were eager to hurry southwards: they were content that the decision, which they must make at latest when they came to Rauros and the Tindrock Isle, still lay some days ahead; and they let the River bear them on at its own pace, having no desire to hasten towards the perils that lay beyond, whichever course they took in the end. Aragorn let them drift with the stream as they wished, husbanding their strength against weariness to come. But he insisted that at least they should start early each day and journey on far into the evening; for he felt in his heart that time was pressing, and he feared that the Dark Lord had not been idle while they lingered in Lórien."
Meanwhile, Gandalf is borne by Gwaihir the Windlord to Lórien:
"'Thus it was that I came to Caras Galadon and found you but lately gone. I tarried there in the ageless time of that land where days bring healing not decay. Healing I found, and I was clothed in white....'" 

16 February 2015

Today in Middle-earth: February 16

Farewell to Lórien by Ted Nasmith
On this day in the year 3019 of the Third Age, the Fellowship departs Lothlorien. Celeborn provides them with boats, and they are also given several other gifts by the Lord and Lady:

Legolas is given a bow and arrows; Aragorn receives a sheath for Anduril and the Elfstone (an heirloom of the Lady's house); Merry and Pippin receive silver belts with a clasp in the shape of a golden flower; Boromir receives a belt of gold; Samwise receives a small box containing earth from the Lady's orchard and a single mallorn nut. Gimli asks for a single strand of the Lady's hair, but she gives him three. To Frodo, she gives a phial filled with water from her mirror which contains light from the star Eärendil.

Gollum, hiding along the banks, observes the Fellowship's departure. 

15 February 2015

Today in Middle-earth: February 15

On this day in the year 3019 of the Third Age, the Fellowship ends their stay in Lothlórien.
In the morning, as they were beginning to pack their slender goods, Elves that could speak their tongue came to them and brought them many gifts of food and clothing for the journey.
In addition to a fair supply of lembas, the Elvish waybread which Gimli mistakes for Dale-Men's cram, the Elves of Lórien offer gifts to the Fellowship:
For each they had provided a hood and cloak, made according to his size, of the light but warm silken stuff that the Galadrim wove. It was hard to say of what colour they were: grey with the hue of twilight under the trees they seemed to be; and yet if they were moved, or set in another light, they were green as shadowed leaves, or brown as fallow fields by night, dusk-silver as water under the stars. Each cloak was fastened about the neck with a brooch like green leaf veined with silver.

14 February 2015

Today in Middle-earth: February 14

The Mirror of Galadriel

On this day in the year 3019 of the Third Age, Frodo is invited to look into the Mirror of Galadriel:
“With water from the stream Galadriel filled the basin to the brim, and breathed on it, and when the water was still again she spoke.’Here is the Mirror of Galadriel,’ she said.’I have brought you here so that you may look in it, if you will.'”
(Tolkien, 1965 Ballantine, p. 468 FotR)
The Mirror of Galadriel by Peter Xavier Price

Gandalf returns to life, and lies in a trance.

Meanwhile, Gandalf remains in a trance for three days.
“‘I was alone, forgotten, without escape upon the hard horn of the world.There I lay staring upward, while the stars wheeled over, and each day was as long as a life-age of the earth.'”
(Tolkien, 1965 Ballantine, p. 135 TT)

'The Hobbit' Trilogy Comes to Blu-ray March 24

The final instalment of Peter Jackson's Hobbit trilogy, 'The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies', will be available on March 24 in 2D and 3D Blu-ray/DVD/Digital HD combo packs. (Amazon is currently accepting pre-orders.) Fans can also pre-order 'The Hobbit: The Motion Picture Trilogy' set, which includes the theatrical cuts of all three films ($53.08 on Amazon).

The Blu-ray release of The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies is presented in 1080p with DTS-HD Master Audio 7.1 surround and includes such special features as:

  • New Zealand: Home of Middle-earth - Part 3
  • Recruiting the Five Armies
  • Completing Middle-earth
  • The Last Goodbye Music Video
  • Theatrical and "Legacy" Trailers

13 February 2015

My Tolkien Collection: Pop Up Tees

Last week, Pop Up Tee offered four different Middle-earth Brewery themed t-shirts. I ended up ordering the "Mordor Dark Ale" and "Rivendell Cider" tees, both of which arrived today. I am so in love with them!

12 February 2015

My Tolkien Collection: Infinity Scarf and Pendant

Today I'm rocking my Middle-earth infinity scarf and Elvish [One Ring] script pendant! I received the pendant many years ago from my parents; the scarf was a birthday gift I received last year. Both are amazing and I'm so thankful for them!

04 February 2015

Apply to Join LOTRO's Stream Team

This is slightly old news, but it sounds like they're still taking applications:
Do you stream regularly? Are you looking to grow your audience? If you answered yes* to any of these questions, we want you to join the Lord of the Rings Online Community Stream Team! (*or if you stream regularly and feature Lord of the Rings Online or are looking to introduce the game to your existing audience.) 
Members of the Lord of the Rings Online Community Stream Team will gain access to certain benefits designed to help grow their audience including:
  • Free Turbine Point codes and items for giveaways
  • Opportunities to have some of the game's devs join your stream
  • Promotional support
We’re looking for players of all levels who stream regularly each week. Send your Twitch username, Community name, server and the normal times that you stream to stream@lotro.com for consideration. We will be watching and reaching out to potential streamers to join our team.
(Originally posted 20 January in the LOTRO Forums)

Celebrate Valentine's Day Tolkien Style

Whether you observe Valentine's Day or not, it's a perfect opportunity to shower your loved one – or treat yourself – to some Tolkien-inspired gifts. I have treated myself to a decent amount of jewellery over the years, and frequently have people asking me where I got some of my items; so I thought I'd post some more gift-giving ideas.

For the Lúthien in your life:

For the Beren in your life:

Not Into Fancy Gifts or Extravagant Celebrations? Here are some fun and inexpensive ways to spend Valentine's Day with your special someone:
  • In lieu of gifts or fancy dinners, this is the perfect time to (re-)read JRR Tolkien's The Lays of Beleriand. Among many other wonderful poems, this volume contains "The Lay of Leithian", which tells the epic love story of the mortal Beren and the Elf Lúthien Tinúviel, a tale which occurred long before that of Aragorn and Arwen. 
  • Have a movie marathon at home. Bake some Tolkien-inspired goodies, like lembas bread or cookies decorated as your favourite Tolkien characters.
  • Make a meal inspired by your favourite race or character. 
  • Go for a walk – explore your surroundings and look for places that remind you of Middle-earth.
  • Play some video games – such as The Lord of the Rings Online – together. There's nothing like partnering up with your significant other to take down the armies of Sauron!