UPDATE: Lord of the Rings - A Nazi Book?! - Italian newspaper describes LOTR as "a bit on the nazi-skinhead side"

We receive the following e-mail from self-described web journalist Robert Bernocchi.

Today (11/5/2001) the very important Italian newspaper La Repubblica published an article from the Cannes Film Festival by big Italian journalist Natalia Aspesi who insulted: 1) the memory of J.R.R. Tolkien, 2) his best literary work The Lord of the Rings, 3) the huge mass of fans who, in each part of the Earth, love this book since its first edition in 1956.

Writing about the LOTR Cannes Day Natalia Aspesi used these words: "…this fantasy saga, A LITTLE BIT NAZISKIN, written by the English philologist J.R. Talkien [you read it right, she wrote J.R. Talkien, N.d.R.] whose book, for his celtic mythology passion, will be used in the formigonbossiane schools (Formigoni and Bossi are two conservative Italian politicians who want, especially Bossi, to separate Lombardia country from the rest of Italian nation. Bossi is a friend of Austrian politician filo-nazist Haider, N.d.R.) as basis text."

We suppose that Natalia Aspesi didn’t read the book. The article is full of other mistakes as "Jan McKellen" instead of Ian McKellen and wickednesses as describing Liv Tyler as fat and LOTR fans as a sort of maniac, psychopathic persons who will go crazy if the costumes of the movie won’t be the same described in the three books. She attacks also the New Line budget strategy. Can you imagine anything more offensive?

For now we are the only journalists who took position against Aspesi words on our LOTR Italian site (http://www.caltanet.it/frm/cinema/home.html?../../html_pag/spettacolo/cinema/eventi/signoreanelli_indice.htm) with an article of our director Francesco Alò. Aspesi is one of the biggest Italian journalist and La Repubblica is the second Italian newspaper for readers and sales.

If you want to protest with us, please publish this mail and invite your readers to send their opinion at our dedicated e-mail address tolkien@caltanet.it. We will collect all the letters and we’ll write to La Repubblica. Please join us.

UPDATE 1:45pm

Barky, whose wife is Italian, provided us with a translation of the original article. He tells us that the author, Natalia Aspesi, is well-liked and considered funny in Italy.

The invasion of the Hobbits

by Natalia Aspesi

A typical festival catastrophe is announced - the disembarking, in this city already martyred to a noisy and arrogant cinematographic occupation, of the Hobbits: in flocks, herds, hordes, cyclones. They are the fans of the famous fantasy saga, a bit on the nazi-skinhead side, written by the English philologist J.R. Talkien [sic] which, given the author's passion for Celtic mythology, would certainly enter in the "Formigonbossian" school of Lomabardy as a core text of "national" history. Today the American production house New Line, which boasts of having spent, on the "Lord of the Rings" film trilogy, several thousand billion Lire, showed - to the lucky few armed with a pass and willing to pass through the X-ray machine, twenty minutes packed with elves, orcs, wizards, princesses, dwarves, and obviously Hobbits, the pygmies with the hairy feet. Then, a meeting with the director, producers, various technicians and among the actors the elf-queen Cate Blanchett and the simple and chubby elf Liv Tyler, plus the wizard Gandalf of the long white beard down to his knees and the hardly reassuring face of Jan McKellen. Then a party in the cardboard castle, into which the Hobbit invaders did everything to enter. The site www.lordoftherings.net had more than ten million hits in one week, with impassioned fans who threaten disaster if even one Orc-kilt doesn't correspond to the book.

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