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The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King: Extended Edition [2004] (4 discs)

Director:Peter Jackson
Writer:Fran Walsh
Peter Jackson
Philippa Boyens
Composer:Howard Shore
Length:251 minutes
(4 hours 11 minutes)
MPAA Rating:PG-13
Sorting Category:Fantasy
Sorting Tub:Juliet
IMDB Rating:8.8/10
Rotten Tomatoes Rating:94%
Amazon Rating:4.5/5 stars
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Synopsis: The fight to protect Gondor proceeds while Frodo and Sam are lead through the lair of the ancient spider Shelob.

Reaction: There are too many ending sequences but with a story this long, a long denoument is to be expected. Otherwise very well made. You have to be ready to sit for quite a while, though.

Personal Rating: 7/10

Peter Jackson => Director / Writer / Mercenary On Boat
Fran Walsh => Writer
Philippa Boyens => Writer
Howard Shore => Composer
J.R.R. Tolkien => Novel
Alan Howard => The Ring (voice)
Alexandra Astin => Elanor Gamgee
Andy Serkis => Sméagol / Gollum / Voice of The Witchking
Bernard Hill => Théoden - King of Rohan
Billy Boyd => Peregrin 'Pippin' Took
Brad Dourif => Grima Wormtongue
Bret McKenzie => Elf Escort
Bruce Hopkins => Gamling
Bruce Spence => The Mouth of Sauron (extended edition)
Cate Blanchett => Galadriel - Lady of Lórien
Christopher Lee => Saruman the White
David Wenham => Faramir - Prince of Ithilien
Dominic Monaghan => Meriadoc 'Merry' Brandybuck
Elijah Wood => Frodo Baggins
Harry Sinclair => Isildur, son of Elendil
Hugo Weaving => Elrond Half-elven
Ian Holm => Bilbo Baggins
Ian McKellen => Gandalf the Grey
John Bach => Madril
John Noble => Denethor II
John Rhys-Davies => Voice of Treebeard / Gimli, son of Glóin
Karl Urban => Éomer - Third Marshal of the Riddermark
Lawrence Makoare => Gothmog / Witchking
Liv Tyler => Arwen Undómiel
Marton Csokas => Celeborn - Lord of Lothlórien
Miranda Otto => Éowyn - the White Lady of Rohan
Orlando Bloom => Legolas Greenleaf
Paul Norell => King of the Dead
Sala Baker => Sauron the Deceiver / Orc
Sarah McLeod => Rosie Cotton
Sean Astin => Samwise 'Sam' Gamgee
Sean Bean => Boromir - Captain of the White Tower
Thomas Robins => Déagol
Viggo Mortensen => Aragorn II, son of Arathorn - the Dúnadan

Random Trivia For This Title:

  • Andy Serkis was not the film-makers' first choice to play the real Smeagol at the beginning of the film. However, once they started considering other actors, they realized that Serkis was the natural choice.
  • For the lighting of the beacons sequence, one beacon was helicoptered up to the top of a mountain and then lit. The rest were all computer generated.
  • John Rhys-Davies provides the voice of Treebeard (uncredited for this movie, but credited for The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers).
  • The WETA special effects crew felt very challenged when creating Shelob by how effective the giant spider had been in Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets.
  • Peter Jackson is arachnophobic and based the Shelob design on the types of spiders he feared the most.
  • A normal major motion picture averages about 200 effects shots. This film had 1488.
  • The final reel of the film to be completed was done only five days before the world premiere in Wellington, New Zealand. It was actually still wet from the developing process because there was no time to dry it. The premiere was the first time that Peter Jackson had seen the completed film.
  • While filming the trilogy, Viggo Mortensen got so into character that during a conversation, Peter Jackson referred to him as "Aragorn" for over half an hour without Mortensen's realizing it.
  • Theoden touching the spears of his soldiers before they charge into battle was Bernard Hill's idea.
  • The battle scenes, which reportedly contain over 200,000 digital participants, are so huge that an extra room had to be built onto Weta Digital's effects facility to house all the computer equipment needed to render the scenes.