When the exquisitely talented British actor Richard Armitage was initially cast in the role of Thorin Oakenshield in The Hobbit [(1, above)] as revealed on October 22, 2010 [(2, below left)], others also mentioned Mr. Armitage’s “heartthrob dwarf” looks –which Hobbit Director countered in an article [(3, below right)].
Then later in Summer 2011 when the first portraits of the Dwarfs were revealed [(4), below]–there was an initial firestorm of controversy about RA being: too tall, too good looking, not heavy enough, too short a beard, and not old enough, etc.
Well, take a look at this picture from the 4th Hobbit Production video [(5, below)]. Mr. Armitage (middle in gRAy costume) looks shorter than his everyday height–quite Dwarf like if you ask me–due to optical illusions and film magic. He looks broader, his hair is gRAyer giving us a sense of his age, and his hair is long, even if his beard is not long. Remember Dwarfs in Tolkien’s world can live to be 400 years old, so Thorin at 197 years is merely middle aged.
Richard Armitage does not look like “himself”. But then RA always transforms himself for his character portrayals. Take that, you LOTR Fanboyz naysayers! Snap!
I, for one, am willing to wait with great anticipation to experience what will no doubt be Richard Armitage’s amazing portrayal of Thorin Oakenshield as he transports us through his masterful storytelling into the world of JRR Tokien’s “The Hobbit”–13 months from now when the first film, The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, will be released. From what I’ve seen so far–in production videos [(6), excerpted by Bccmee below)]
and production stills–Richard Armitage as Thorin is fierce, regal, commanding, warrior like, and not someone to to trifled with. That dragon Smaug better watch out!
Here is one final amazing image of Richard Armitage as Thorin Oakenshield to leave you with–as created by Bccmee [(7) Sword path, below):
(1) Hobbit film graphic from the Hobbit Career Page on RANet, November 17, 2011: http://www.richardarmitagenet.com/career/214.html
(2) Richard Armitage’s Career Page on Agent’s web site reveals that he is cast in the Lead of Thorin Oakenshield, October 22, 2010: http://www.richardarmitagenet.com/images/articlescans/UA_22Oct2010.jpg
(3) EW.com article about Richard Armitage being a “Heartthrob Dwarf”, October 27, 2010: http://www.richardarmitagenet.com/images/articlescans/EWPopwatch_27Oct10.jpg
(4) Official 13 Dwarfs image as published on TORN (www.theonering.net) and on RANet: http://www.richardarmitagenet.com/images/gallery/Hobbit/HobbitStills/album/slides/13-Dwarves-Official-Image.html
(5) Thorin looking like a Dwarf in the Hobbit Production Video #4, November 17,2011 on RANet: http://www.richardarmitagenet.com/images/gallery/Hobbit/4thProdVideo/album/slides/Video4-05.html
(6) Bccmee’s Excerpt of Richard Armitage sequences in the Hobbit Production video #4, July21, 2011: http://fanvideos.wordpress.com/2011/07/21/a-minute-of-richard-armitage-peter-jackson-video-blog-3/
(7) Bccmee’s amazing wallpaper graphic of Thorin, “My path is the Sword Path”, July 19, 2011: https://gratianads90.files.wordpress.com/2011/09/hobbitthorinswordpathjul1911bccmee2.jpg
This is a great aggregation of information, Gratiana! Thanks for putting so many amazing Hobbit and Thorin tidbits together for us. Even though it’s still over a year to wait, and I’m trying to pace myself, I’m really looking forward to this movie. Richard Armitage is indeed going to rock that role!
Thanks for your kind note. And thank you for being our “Tech Goddess Divine”–as I’ve dubbed you dear friend–with regard to you making video media about Mr. Armitage more accessible to all of us, as well as, your own amazing video and graphics that you design and produce yourself. Brava!
And I agree with you completely, Richard Armitage will ROCK as Thorin!
Cheers! Grati ;->
Informitive as always Gratiana! Thanks for your dilligence:)
Thanks for your nice note. And as to my dilligence? I’m just a humble RA fan and I look forward to seeing The Hobbit films.
Cheers! Grati ;->
This is a great compilation of Thorin info, Gratiana! I think a lot of the naysayers have probably never seen RA’s work. All they know is that he is a ridiculously attractive man, playing a dwarf. I can see how someone who is unacquainted with his work could find his casting odd. But, given the amazing job Peter Jackson did with the Lord of the Rings movies, it seems people would have more faith in PJ’s casting choices. As both a fan of Tolkien and RA, I’m anxiously anticipating the release of the Hobbit movies.
I agree with you most sincerely. Richard Armitage is an exquistely talented actor and storyteller! He will be transformative as Thorin–creating “the” defining Thorin character portrayal for all time.
The transformative physicality that Mr. Armitage embues his various character portrayals with will set his Thorin apart and distinct from his other roles to date. And though the beard and facial prosthetics that Mr. Armitage wear as Thorin obscure his handsome visage, we can still see his bright blue eyes and know that it is him.
We, Mr. Armitage’s early fans, have a real treat ahead of us. Not only will Mr. Armitage give us and the world another amazing character portrayal through his gift of storytelling, but we will also be able to watch as he takes his rightful place as an esteemed actor of his generation on the world stage. And to think, we knew him when.
Thanks so much for visiting and commenting.
Cheers! Grati ;->
Great post, Grati! The reason why there were some criticism about the casting of Mr. Armitage as Thorin is pure jealousy! LOL
Now is about one year to the premiere of The Hobbit part one, and never twelve months seemed to be sooooo long. But it will be absolutely worth the wait to see RA as one of the lead roles in one of the most anticipated films of last years.
According with Andy Serkis, the first trailer will be around Christmas:
I agree–pure jealousy. Ha! And thanks for the additional link! It slipped my mind as I was finishing my essay.
Thorin by Richard Armitage will be great! The character is amazing, complex, profound and heroic. Perfect for the talent of RA. I do not see any other actor in the role, and PJ apparently did not since the selection of RA was based on the test casting. I subscribe to specific sites by Tolkien and I read many critics have surrendered to Richard Armitage.
Hi Ana Cris,
We all concur! Mr. Richard Armitage will be fabulous as Thorin. I, too, have read the articles stating that Sir Peter Jackson cast Richard Armitage for the role of Thorin based on his strong audition–and that Mr. Armitage was very pleased with that. Bully for him, as the Brits say.
I’m also glad to hear from your note that you’ve discovered that at least some Tolkien purists are coming around to accepting Mr. Armitage as Thorin. Hurrah! Finally!
Thanks for visiting and commenting! Cheers! Grati ;->
Thank you for pulling all these little tidbits together in one place for us, Gratiana. I think Matthew is just as excited and impatient to see “The Hobbit” as I am! I’ve already provided him with a few screencaps from the last videoblog of Richard and Martin Freeman together, but I must send him that photo above with Richard, Martin and Hugo Weaving to give him an idea of how the different species are going to look together. I’m thinking of sending a few shots to Melanie, too….she’s never read the book but she loved LOTR as much as Matthew and I did.
Thanks for your nice note. I’m glad to hear that “The Hobbit” is a family affair for you. That makes anticipating and then watching it all the more fun. It’s the same with myself and my hubby.
Be sure to click on the direct link for the pictures or graphics that I provided in the references. You’ll get the “first generation” image that way along with its provenance–in case you want to find it again.
And I can’t say enough good things about the RANet website (http://www.richardarmitagenet.com/) for it’s treasure trove of resources about Mr. Armitage–news and media. RANet is the product of one amazing woman, screen named Alicat. And several of Ali’s video resources that she shares or links to were created by Bccmee–whose media I’ve featured in this and other essays. Bccmee also graciously gave a wonderful 4 part tutorial last week about making gifs (http://fanvideos.wordpress.com/2011/11/09/animated-gif-tutorial-part-4-of-4/ ). You can also visit her Fanvideos blog by clicking on the link in my blogroll on the right hand side of this screen.
Thanks for visiting and commenting! Cheers! Grati ;->
GizTheGunslinger has a new Hobbit teaser trailer she produced just for fun until the official trailer comes out. Well done Giz! Here is that link. Enjoy!
Cheers! Grati ;->
Gratia,the proof will be in the pudding, in time for Christmas next year. None of us anticipate that RA will fall flat over his big feet. (Except on entering the Hobbit habitation :) ) The images and vids portend more than well. (says she, with customary restraint – which is in abeyance when regarding the actor – but – keeping a level head. Absolutely. :D ) Mr. Armitage is an excellent choice for SIR Peter, and based on audition alone – that speaks to both actor and producer/director, do you think?
I, too, hold out great hope that Richard Armitage’s portrayal of Thorin will be resoundingly praised by new fans and critics alike. Sir Peter Jackson has a way of selecting uniquely talented actors for his films, and who then go on to become sought after film actors. I’m thinking of Orlando Bloom here.
Sir Peter always seems to create a wonderful mix amongst his acting ensemble that creates a cohesive vision–in this case, of Tolkien’s world–in his storytelling. Perhaps Sir PJ is like an amazing party planner–or music DJ–mixing the the elements to create an harmonious effect. There’s a new name for him–DJ PJ. Do you think he’ll like that? Ha!
Thanks for visiting and commenting. Cheers! Grati ;->
I agree that the casting was excellent. I think for anyone not familiar with Richard Armitage’s work, they should trust Peter Jackson’s judgement. If they are true fans of LOTR, then they already know how meticulous Sir Peter is about his films. Can anyone find anything to criticize about the LOTR trilogy??? Seriously, no! So why would they question is casting choice for one of the key roles in The Hobbit? He is the only one who had prior knowledge of the direction he would take in the two upcoming movies, and clearly he knew what he wanted for Thorin Oakenshield. I think Richard Armitage is perfect. His acting range has been proven as he’s mastered both the “sensitive romantic” as well as the “tough guy, badass soldier” types. He will not disappoint this time around either. I have always wondered how it could be that he’d avoided worldwide acclaim this long, but I’m certain that is about to change. A year from now, when the first Hobbit movie premieres, EVERYONE will know his name. He will probably lament the loss of his privacy, but I’m sure it will be very gratifying to know he landed his “dream role”. And even disguised as a warrior dwarf, his sex appeal will shine through. I have a romance novel coming out in January, and as I pictured the hero in the book, only one face came to mind….Richard’s.
Thanks for your very nice note. I’m sorry that I didn’t reply earlier, but I just saw the email notification this morning. Yesterday the trivia game blog post quite took over my in box. Ha!
I sincerely agree with you about Richard Armitage’s exquisite talent for acting and storytelling. I believe that he will finally be recognized world wide and that will give him even more opportuities and choices in his future artistic projects.
How nice to find out you are a writer. Have you published on some of the writer’s sites like DF or Wattpad and I migt have seen or read you? I’ve only been acquainted with those sites the last few months.Please do share the title of your upcoming story and where it might be found once it is published. I publish my stories on DF first and then serialize them here. I hope to share them with a wider audience one day. And oh my yes, Richard Armitage is my muse.
Thanks so much for visiting and commenting. Cheers! Grati ;->
12/22/11–Now that we have The Hobbit movie teaser trailer in the public realm, I thought that I would add it to this essay thread as a welcome addendum. And we were right! Richard Armitage is magnificent as Thorin Oakenshield! Enjoy the movie trailer: