"Every writer making a secondary world wishes in some measure to be a real maker, or hopes that he is drawing on reality: hopes that the peculiar quality of this secondary world (if not all the details) are derived from reality, or are flowing into it." -J.R.R. Tolkien
When Peter Jackson released The Fellowship of the Ring, and Part One of The Lord of the Rings, I did what many other Tolkien fans did and rushed out to see the films. I was completely blown away. The battles, the characters, the magic, and most of all, the story. Many other directors would have changed the story and turned it into another bad Hollywood flick. But instead, Mr. Jackson used Tolkien's epic tale to his advantage. He captured the essence of the people, the places, the languages, cultures and history. What follows is an interview Mr. Jackson gave while in post-production of the upcoming movie, King Kong.
|Peter Jackson (idsnews.com)|
What inspired you to be a director/everything?
"When I was nine years old I saw the classic 1933 film, KING KONG. I was
completely blown away by it. It took me to another world and I decided then
and there that I wanted to be a filmmaker!"
What is your advice to kids making films?
"My advice to anyone who is wanting to make films is to do just that - Start
making films! Get your hands on a camera and round up your friends and
start shooting. That is what I did initially. You will start to develop
your own style and find out what type of stories you want to tell."
Do you laugh a lot?
"I love a good laugh. This job can be incredibly tiring and hard at times, so
you have to have a good sense of humour to help get you through."
Are you going to make The Hobbit into a movie?
"Not in the very near future. No one has approached me about it yet, but if
the chance is offered to me, I will have to seriously consider it."
|Gandalf (Ian McKellen) and Peter Jackson on the set of LotR (Wingnut Films)|
Are you going to do more medieval-type movies?
"Perhaps, if a story really captures my attention or if I come up with an idea which gets me excited, but I have a lot of different stories I want to tell."
Why King Kong?
"As I said earlier, KING KONG was the film that made me want to become a filmmaker. It is my favourite film of all time, and the chance to become a part of this amazing film's legacy was just too great to pass up. I have always wanted to make my version of KING KONG. I even started one when I was nine years old, although the one I am making now is slightly better!"
What are your favourite shoes to wear?
"Well, I have never been one to wear shoes very often. In fact, I go barefoot
most of the time, but I do like a comfortable pair of sneakers, or hiking
shoes when I'm on the set."
|Ray Harryhausen (http://www.rayharryhausen.com)|
Who is your hero and why?
"I don't really have heroes as such, but there are certainly people I admire
greatly and am inspired by. Merian C. Cooper is one of them - He was the
filmmaker who first brought KONG to the silver screen. Ray Harryhausen is
another man whose work I was very inspired by. He is a special effects
technician who started out in the 1930's. He was one of the first to really
push the envelope as far as special effects are concerned, and changed
Ultimately, he is responsible for most of the modern day effects you see
today, as he was truly a pioneer in his field who embraced technology and
made the world see what effects could really do."
If you could be a character in the Lord of the Rings, who would you be and
"I definitely relate to the hobbits and their little world of Hobbiton. What
a great place that would be to live in. My favourite character has always
been Bilbo Baggins. I love the little guy who has a big heart."
What were you into as a kid?
"Film. I always loved movies and model making. I would go to the movies as
often as possible and watch all the movies on T.V. They always fascinated me,
but it was KING KONG that cemented my desire to get behind the camera and
tell stories of my own."
Are you an environmentalist?
"I am, and I truly believe that most people are deep down. It is very
important that we send the world in a safe direction for future generations.
J.R.R. Tolkien was certainly an environmentalist, as one of the inspirations
for his stories came from his dismay at the industrial revolution taking
over and factories going up where beautiful green hills used to be. In THE LORD
OF THE RINGS, the scenes where Saruman was destroying huge sections of Fangorn Forest to help build his army 'factory' - came directly from Tolkien's distaste at what he saw happening in England, and the world, at the time. He much preferred the country life, that's for sure!"
|Peter Jackson with his wife, Fran Walsh (achievement.org)|
Peter Jackson is currently living in New Zealand with his wife and collaborator, Fran Walsh, and their children.
With any luck, he'll be making movies for a long, long time!