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The Elves Talk Final Hobbit Movie

December 12, 2014

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By: Lynn Barker

Of all the beings in Middle Earth, the elves are the most graceful and elegant but put them in a fight or flight situation and they know how to kick butt bigtime! Legolas (Orlando Bloom), Tauriel (Evangeline Lilly) and elf king Thranduil (Lee Pace) each masters his or her own weaponry and warcraft with flair!

The elf actors met recently to tell us all about their memories of working on Battle of the Five Armies, the last of The Hobbit films, reveal who kept what from the costume and weaponry departments and talk about preparing for the fight-heavy action.

Q: This is the final installment so what are you most excited about the audience seeing?

  • Evangeline: I’m most excited to see the final moments between.. well there’s an amazing climax for my character’s story arc and I’m excited to see it because I practically killed myself doing it! Whenever you work really, really hard on a scene it’s always exciting to see if it turned out (okay) or not.

Tauriel (Evangeline Lilly) and Legolas (Orlando Bloom)Tauriel (Evangeline Lilly) and Legolas (Orlando Bloom)Courtesy of Warner Bros.

Q: Although the technology improves with every film, the story and characters still shine.

  • Orlando: That’s part of Pete’s (Director Peter Jackson) genius. Those shots with the dragon, hardly anyone director-wise does what he can do with that in terms of his vision and the way he thinks. You saw some of that in Pete’s movie Kong when the ape comes in and sweeps (the girl) off the ground. Getting the camera, CG and all the effects to do that is nearly impossible but he has the vision for that and we’re in this Middle Earth world which is sort of fantasy but also kind of feels real. You can’t compete with the Marvel kind of (visual) stuff but we’re not trying to. We’re doing our own thing.

Legolas (Orlando Bloom) takes aimLegolas (Orlando Bloom) takes aimCourtesy of Warner Bros.

Q: So much of what we end up seeing isn’t there on set for you. Any weird experiences with that?

  • Orlando: Well, it’s funny when Pete says “Okay get on the back of an orc” and he goes “okay, sort of stick your sword in there and wave it like a joy stick and see which way you go” and then you see it (on screen) and you go “Really? That’s what happened? That’s what I was doing?” It’s so amazing.

Elf king Thranduil: elegant but dangerous!Elf king Thranduil: elegant but dangerous!Courtesy of Warner Bros.

Q: Did you get excited about some of the amazing sets?

  • Lee: Yeah, I saw them last night for the first time because most of the work I did was on a green screen. Me and my elk were on a green screen for the most part. There was a horse I rode for some scenes but on some it was a mechanical rig. I actually had better luck standing on top of the horse than on that. I got thrown off multiple times then I’d hear Pete on the microphone going “ Ha haaaaa”. He liked that best. But it’s a big battle of five armies and the way he’s orchestrated these armies on such a massive scale is really extraordinary.

Thranduil (Lee Pace) strategizes with GandalfThranduil (Lee Pace) strategizes with GandalfCourtesy of Warner Bros.

Q: Orlando, by now do you just feel instinctive about your role or do you still feel you have to prepare to play Legolas?

  • Orlando: I was really nervous going into this because I hadn’t done it in so long. “I’m gonna be too old for this”.
  • Evangeline: We were all too old. (laughter)
  • Orlando: Well once I got going but there were some shots at the beginning of this movie that we shot on the first day and I’m watching “Oh, yeah. That was my first day performance” (he laughs) but it’s all good. It’s sort of bittersweet to see him go because of the legacy that came before, the movies and the books that Tolkien wrote and the fact that there are fans out there that really love this world so immensely, I think that lands on all of us. You feel you kind of have to step up and share that responsibility as an actor in these films.

Tauriel in the flames of battleTauriel in the flames of battleCourtesy of Warner Bros.

Q: Were any of you ever allowed to keep anything from the set and if you weren’t, what would you have liked to have kept?

  • Orlando: I’m still battling for my white knives.
  • Evangeline: Yes, you should have those! I want your white knives. He had the best weapons in the film. Those knives were the sexiest.
  • Lee: I kept my sword and some ears.
  • Lily: I have ears and my daggers and my leather pants.
  • Orlando: You’ve got your daggers? Oh my God!

Tauriel (Evangeline Lilly) is ready for battleTauriel (Evangeline Lilly) is ready for battleCourtesy of Warner Bros.

Q: On the pants, do you wear them on a Saturday night?

  • Evangeline: I do! I’ve worn them out to night clubs and the leather is rockin’. I kept a load of stuff. And I kept the back of my cast chair. (Orlando looks upset).  He didn’t get anything!. (laughter)

Tauriel must decide her fateTauriel must decide her fateCourtesy of Warner Bros.

Q: Any physical preparation for your roles this time around?

  • Evangeline: Oh, God yes. My son was three months old when I started working on the stunt training and I still had splayed hips and couldn’t even walk normally let alone fight orcs normally…whatever that looks like. But, it was really challenging. I would just be in the warm-up and told to do a lunge and I could not physically lunge or do that stretch.
  • I was breast-feeding my baby so I still had all that estrogen pumping through me so I was the least (she growls) grrrrrrr person in the world at that moment. I was all soft. It was the hardest stunt work I ever had to do because I just wasn’t in that head space nor in that bod space.
  • Orlando: It’s a great way into the character actually because Legolas is such a physical kind of action elf. So, to do all of that stuff was super important and there’s some really cool moves I learned for the stunt stuff like you roll on your knees and turn and throw knives. Very hard to do. The physical preparation was key.
  • Evangeline: Orlando is kind of the king of stunts. He’s good at everything in the stunt world.
  • Lee: The fighting stuff really does help you get into the character in a way because the elves aren’t human. They’re not like us. They’re different. They’re kind of wilder and my character is very still in the movie and kind of icy until the fight starts.
  • Orlando: But when the fight starts he’s basically the king of fighting. He’s the father figure and his moves are so poetic and beautiful. He’s also a killing machine.
  • Evangeline: But he’s still calm, cool and collected when he fights which is the most terrifying thing. I’m excited to see it.

The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies PosterThe Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies PosterCourtesy of Warner Bros.

The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies
is in theaters December 17th!

 

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