JRR Tolkien's great-grandson Royd gives The Hobbit his approval
JRR Tolkien's great-grandson Royd says expanding The Hobbit into three films is an ambitious move, but there's no one better than Sir Peter Jackson to do it.
After seeing The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, Royd commended Jackson and fellow screenwriters Fran Walsh and Philippa Boyens on their adaptation of the children's book.
"Pete, Fran and Philippa are just great and they're really fans of Tolkien as well, which you'd have to be to take on a task like this ... and they've got a real knowledge of his work as well," Royd says. "To expand it into three films is brave, but if anyone can do it, those guys can pull it off."
The first instalment of the trilogy, The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, does not follow the children's book word for word, with the filmmakers drawing on Tolkien's other works to aid the storytelling.
"Obviously there's changes to the book, but it's a different medium so you're going to have to do that sort of thing and yeah, tricky to do as well," he said.
For the most part, Royd lives a relatively normal life in Wales, but every so often, at a fan convention or an event like The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey premiere in Wellington, people will recognise him.
"It's great fun and a good laugh, meeting all these people," he said, but "so far removed from me living in Wales, It's kind of weird because (Tolkien's) my great-grandfather and always has been. I'm kind of used to it and just forget really that I had this incredibly famous great-grandfather."
He said he particularly liked how Jackson linked The Lord of the Rings to The Hobbit trilogy in the opening of the new film, which features Elijah Wood reprising his role as Frodo and Ian Holm as Bilbo Baggins.
"It's the same filmmaker, the same people involved in it, the same effects company, a lot of the same crew, so there's a natural link there, but I think what he did, how he linked it was good," he said.
The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey is released in Australia on Boxing Day.
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Family approval: Royd Tolkien, great-grandson of The Hobbit and Lord Of The Rings author JRR Tolkien, in Wellington for the premiere of The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey.