Sunday, December 2, 2012


While catching up with The Hobbit worldwide premiere tours and the gorgeous pictures and exciting videos along with blog posts from fans about it all that  are deluging my email and Facebook accounts, one particular video finally stopped me in my tracks.

The interview in Japan with Peter Jackson, Andy Serkis, Elijah Wood, Martin Freeman and of course Richard Armitage, kindly made available by RACentral, in particular Part 4.

(Any underage readers please skip this next bit...)  Peter Jackson's words of praise for Richard Armitage actually gave me an eargasm!  I don't know how else to describe it.  Have you ever been brought to tears by a particularly strong orgasm?  Well that's kind of what it was like to hear Peter Jackson's praise for Richard Armitage!

It's a good thing that I was alone in my house when I saw it because I immediately burst into uncontrollable sobbing.  How wonderful to finally hear the things we fans have been trumpeting out into cyberspace from a world class Director about a performance which will illustrate to the world what we have known all along!  I feel vindicated!  It was a "See! I told you so," kind of moment, but so much better!  Because that feeling was tied up with so many others.

It has been rather a lonely experience being a Richard Armitage fan.  I have treasured the virtual contact with his fans from all over the world which has been a truly unique and creatively stimulating experience for me.  Still it is disheartening to endure the blank looks I encounter when I mention his name in my real life relationships.  (Except for family members who usually roll their eyes while thinking, "There she goes again, I'll just humour her and pretend to listen!")  I have been longing for the day when I can have a discussion about him in the real world and now I'm realizing that the moment is almost here for me.

But never mind me!  I am also so excited and overjoyed for Richard Armitage himself!  What must it be like for him to see all his dreams finally reaching fruition?  It's just such an overwhelming emotional tsunami!

Here are Mr. Jackson's words which I needed to transcribe because I was so pleased with them:

In many respects I look on the characters Bilbo and Thorin as the heart and soul of the story.  And if Bilbo is the heart, then Thorin is the soul. We auditioned the role, saw many, many actors and Richard really managed to capture for us the very important ... the sense of nobility because essentially he is playing a king. But also the conflict as to whether or not he has the ability to lead these dwarves on this very difficult quest - a small number to fight a dragon to reclaim a homeland.  That's a very noble thing he's trying to do and yet he doesn't really have the resources (if you like) to do this.  And so it's...  And also with the character, there's a sense of honour that Richard - (that sort of quiet honour) that Richard carries which I think is absolutely superb.  And as an actor, Richard is one of those very rare actors which ummm... he uses stillness and he uses quiet to draw your eye.  That there can be a lot of things happening on the screen and many characters on the screen and yet Thorin - in his stillness draws your attention.  It's a very, very rare skill.  He's somebody who, when he's on the screen that your eyes go to that you want to watch.

I couldn't agree more, Mr. Jackson.  Richard Armitage is a very rare actor indeed.  But I counter that even though he does have an innate sense of nobility and honour, he was definitely drawing on that natural ability to the nth degree in this role.  As for using stillness and quiet, that is exactly what he does so admirably!  I have never seen an actor that can speak such volumes with the merest flicker of an eyelid!

He is so like a movie star of old, with his star quality.  I have likened him to Cary Grant, and Gary Cooper! (Thanks to Face in Hole). :) In other posts I have pointed out his similarities to Rudolph Valentino, and Paul Newman. There are many more screen stars of Hollywood's heyday that I haven't gotten around to comparing him to yet, but the fact is he has been star material since he first strode across the cotton mill floor in North and South.  Yes, our eyes gravitate to him.  When he is in a scene he holds our entire attention.  (Who would want to look anywhere else?)

This reminds me of one of my favourite fanvideos which was recently updated for RA's birthday. 
Here is GiztheGunslinger's second fanvideo to the tune of Filmstar by Suede.

And now he really is a Film Star!
Whether fans like it or not, (but hopefully he likes it) - that is how it is going to be.



tully2shoes said...

You couldn't have expressed how, I can safely say, all of Richard's fans feel about him. Yes, soon the entire world will discover this extraordinarily talented actor. He deserves the highest possible praise for his varied talents and his decency as a human being. Enjoy the ride, Mr. Armitage! We'll be by your side every step of the way.

Faboamanto said...

You said it perfectly :)

Feeling so happy for him,and yes, proud of him. It has also been a joy to share this premiere avalanche with everyone on Twitter mostly.

I'm waiting after Dec 14 for the first person in my RL who will mention to me this "new actor", Richard Armitage.

Phylly3 said...

@tully2shoes - Yes, it is wonderful to hear him praised - and I could have gone on to mention what Martin Freeman said as well. But I had to stop somewhere.

@Faboamantu - Thanks! I wished I had been on Twitter when it all went down. I have been so tired lately and going to bed much sooner than usual. I was glad for the weekend so I could try to catch up. There has been so much to read! It's all such good stuff though. I am so happy for him!

Collar City Brownstone said...

Hi Phylly, I agree with you 1000% about Richard. I just discovered Richard in January of this year after streaming North & South on Netflix. This is 8 years after the movie was made. To think that Richard has been out there for so many years and I did not know it until just 11 months ago is astounding. There is something special about Richard Armitage and I am not just talking about his acting abilities. He has a quiet commanding presence that you just cannot turn your attention away from. Richard already has a huge army of fans but after December 14th the man is going to have legions of an army of fans. I predict a best actor Oscar nomination for Richard for his role as The Hobbit.

Phylly3 said...

@collarcitybrownstone - Yes, as you say he has "a quiet commanding presence", which we all notice (when we are lucky enough to see him) and which PJ has discovered and the rest of the world will now witness.
It is such an exciting time to be on the cusp of such a momentous event!

Traxy said...

They are so incredibly kind words, and yes, RA's fans have known about this for so long, so yes, there is a feeling of vindication. So great to not just hear these words from a man (by this I mean us fangirls tend to be biased) and not just any man but an acclaimed director!

I agree with Faboamanto - it will be hilarious when someone mentions the "new" actor RA ...

My hubby's in a roleplaying group on Skype, and one of the girls in the group a few weeks ago said that she was excited about the Hobbit because one of her favourite actors were in it. Naturally, someone asked who that was, and when she said RA, and praised him for being a great actor, I yelled "I SECOND THAT!!" or something similar, and then added her on Skype and recommended some sites for her. :D

Fanny/iz4blue said...

What everyone said!
This press conference was precious and it felt like magic to follow the life stream & share those moments with other RAfans. I've been excited silly that I've found myself questioning people which movies they are looking forward too, just to give myself an excuse to mention Thorin here & there.

Gratiana Lovelace said...

Pinch me! RA is going to be so huge as a sought after actor by directors and studios when his portrayal of Thorin Oakenshield is viewed by millions! Shock and awe, people. Shock and awe!

Nat at RA FanBlog said...

You took the words out of our mouths, Phylly! :) I echo what the above commenters say- that I agree with you completely. What an exciting time! RA feels like an old friend, and to see him FINALLY getting the recognition he deserves is so thrilling. :)

Phylly3 said...

@Traxy - I think when I finally hear someone in my real life say something nice about RA I might just have to give them a hug! :)

@Fanny - Yes - it is a giddy time right now -so exciting! Like we are all at the same party!

@Grati - I do hope he will be sought after by all the best directors and not just us fan gurlz. :D

@Nat - Thrilling indeed! I can't even imagine how exciting it must be for him!

Anonymous said...

It was wonderful to watch the actor receive the wider commendation so richly deserved, and so much worked toward! (He hasn't stopped smiling in pure joy throughout the gruelling promotion tours - neither have I :D )

Cary, etc? Gregory Peck!


Phylly3 said...

@Fitzg - Yes. It was truly a joy to watch him in NZ and Tokyo as he seemed to be glowing. I think some exhaustion must have set in since he hit North America though. How could it not? What a schedule!
When I listen to the same questions he is asked over and over, I wonder how long before the novelty wears off?