While spectacles in their own right, few would argue the three Hobbit films hold much of a light to the celebrated Lord of the Rings films, even though largely the same people made them. In the video, from the special features of The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies DVD, posted on Youtube by Joshalots, Peter Jackson, the director of the films, and many of the other crew members finally shed some light on just what went wrong and the awful conditions the films were forced to continue through.
In 2010, Guillermo del Toro (Pacific Rim, Pan’s Labyrinth, Hellboy) departed the project after years of pre-production, leaving it to Peter Jackson to step into the directing role, fresh, just before shooting was to begin. “[When] I jumped in and took over, we didn’t wind the clock back a year and a half and give me a year and a half prep to design the movie,” Jackson explains.”[It] was impossible, and as a result of it being impossible I just started shooting the movie with most of it not prepped at all.”
Conceptual designer John Howe states, “We started all over again from scratch and redesigned the movie.”
The line of horrid accounts continues as is it is discussed how props were completed and brought to the set to be used the very same day, the majority of the filming was done without storyboards, Jackson put in 21 hour work days, and the second unit even began to just film stock battle footage, not knowing anything about how the actual battle would unfold.
Jackson goes as far as to say, “I didn’t know what the hell I was doing.”
Speaking to OneRing.com back in 2010, del Toro said he was leaving The Hobbit films because “the mounting pressures of conflicting schedules have overwhelmed the time slot originally allocated for the project.”
“The bottom line is that Guillermo just didn’t feel he could commit six years to living in New Zealand, exclusively making these films, when his original commitment was for three years,” Jackson explains in the same post.
Does this change the way you look at The Hobbit films? Let us know in the comments.