Ian C. was kind enough to send me the Tolkien Society’s official position Peter Jackson’s upcoming Lord of the Rings films. Here’s what it is:
While the society welcomes the filming of The Lord of the Rings, it is our opinion that no motion picture will ever manage to capture the full depth or flavour of the book. This is because a film and book are two different media for conveying ideas. In a book the readers’ visualisation of the lands and characters described therein, are as unique as the individual reader, whereas any motion picture is a visual attempt at conveying those same ideas and thus the result of its director’s (or the creative team’s) concept of how the story works visually. This means that all cinemagoers will see one idea of how the characters and landscapes should look, irrespective of their own conceptions of them.
However, a quality motion picture that treats the written work with respect has the potential to bring that original work (and others by Tolkien) to the attention of many more people around the world. Therefore we would welcome any quality motion picture, even at the risk of some aspects of it disappointing some aficionados of the written work.
We would also like it to be noted that the artistic merits of any motion picture can only be judged once it is ready for theatrical release, and considered completed by its director. We would also like to point out that The Tolkien Society can not comment on the views of the Tolkien family regarding this film.
I think many of us hold the same views that this statement voices–I do. What do you guys think? Voice your thoughts on the Messageboard.