For those of you (well, us) that have been dealing with Lord of the Rings withdrawal since 2003, devoting actual thoughts during the course of the day to the hope that none of the cast members die or become horribly scarred before The Hobbit completes filming, I think this might be a decent weekend for you. Fan Film, The Hunt for Gollum is set to premiere on DailyMotion this Sunday.
When you hear the term "Fan Film" you may envision something shot with a cheap video camera, with zit-faced geeks wearing armor made of Reynold's Wrap, having fake sword fights in a public park, as SUV's drive through in the background. NOPE! Get that out your head, now. What we're talking about here, is a slickly-produced 40-minute epic that is shaping up to be the most definitive Lord of the Rings Fan Film of all time. The Hunt for Gollum is a non-profit project, created by a team of 150 volunteers. Just looking at the quality of the filmmaking, effects, sets, and even the performances, just makes it seem all the more spectacular.
The film chronicles a plot point taken from the appendices of the original novel, taking place before the events of The Fellowship of the Ring. Gandalf had become suspicious of the "magic ring" which Bilbo acquired from Gollum in the events of The Hobbit. He decided to investigate the issue further by having Aragorn begin a long search through the heart fo Middle Earth to find Gollum and bring him into Elven custody.
All of this sounds amazing, but what about that dreaded albatross called "Copyright Law?" Well, the official site for the film has posted this disclaimer:
"The Hunt For Gollum is an unofficial not for profit short film by a group of enthusiast filmmakers. As a Lord of the Rings Fan Film, we are not affiliated with the Tolkien Estate or New Line Cinema and are producing this project as an entirely non commercial film. As with other fan films we are making this purely for the enjoyment of the material and the experience of making a high quality low budget film. "
I sincerely hope that the powers that be will leave well enough alone, here. These are clearly just a group of fans who have a passion for the story and are merely filling a gap in the Lord of the Rings mythos that would likely have never been covered. If anything, it will only whet our appetites more for The Hobbit, when the first of the two-part epic finally arrives on the big screen in 2012. (A long time, I know.)