After careful deliberation and comparing all of the different sources, including film stills, the shooting miniatures, conceptual art and after discussions with designer Alan Lee, we have settled on creating a rendering of Rivendell that reflects what we see in the establishing wide shots.
Conceptual Photoshop sketches helped define what this would look like as a collectible, and with those approved, work on the foundations has now begun! Before turning it over to the incredibly skilled sculptors and model makers of the workshop to begin the real work, I had the pleasure of breaking out the sculpting tools and some plasticene and carving out the basic geometry of Rivendell's rocky mountainside, allowing us all to debate the positioning of the structures in relation to each other and figure out the scale we would be building to. One of the most important things I discovered was to ensure that the rivers that wind their way through and beneath Imladris would always flow downhill!
With the basic layout of the stone foundations now established, work is beginning on the buildings and terraces, so expect to see more of that soon!
Designer, Weta Workshop.
Given what a beautiful and important featured location Rivendell is in the trilogy, it has always been a miniature collectible environment we've longed to create at Weta. Our miniatures team created Rivendell for the films, so there's no better place to do it than here, but in the past a licensing restriction had kept Elrond's home off the table for us as a collectible. With Weta's new The Lord of the Rings license, that restriction no longer applies, so Rivendell is up for grabs again and if the collectors' polls are anything to go by, our customers are as excited to see this one released as we are. Bring on Rivendell!
There are a few challenges presented by Elrond's Last Homely House. Firstly, it's insanely intricate, which demands a certain size in order for that detail to be done justice, but make it too big and it becomes more and more expensive. Make it too small and it becomes a question of whether it's even worth doing as all that detail becomes lost and indiscernible. The feedback from folks on the collecting forums seems to suggest that most collectors share our view that Rivendell is something special and that, given its iconic status and beauty on screen, the collectible deserves to be treated as something special too. Of any of the miniature environment releases, it could probably stand to be a little bigger than most and form a kind of centerpiece for a mini environment collection. With that in mind, and trying to strike a balance between detail, spread and affordability, we've settled on building it on the largest of our existing miniature environment bases, approximately four-hundred millimeters long by two-hundred and seventy wide, or roughly sixteen by ten and a half inches.
The next issue to deal with concerns geography. Rivendell is a very complex structure with towers, wings, terraces, paths and structures that wind and twist across a rugged, river-etched mountainside. The miniatures used in the production of the movies have been taken apart and reconstructed more than once in the course of filming, and the use of digital matt paintings complicates things a little further. Rivendell's layout, it seems, is not necessarily entirely consistent from scene to scene. Given Elven magic played a part in its founding, that is not surprising, nor inappropriate, but it poses a challenge for us as we seek to recreate it in earthly polystone! A certain degree of compromise has had to be found in order to replicate the Elven outpost so that it most closely matches the most iconic shots in the trilogy, but there's some ambiguity involved. We've had to reason that perhaps what we see over the shoulders of the Fellowship members in some shots represents some other parts of Imladris not discernible in the wide shots?
Keep the updates coming!
I can't wait to see where you guys go with this. Rivendell... Read more.
I can't wait to see where you guys go with this. Rivendell is a "gasp" location, so I'm excited to see how you capture that!
I love your work and only wish I had more cash to enjoy it :-)
5 of 5 people found this useful.
Rivendell - Finally !!!
Rivendell is most certainly one of the places that came over so... Read more.
Rivendell is most certainly one of the places that came over so astonishing in the movie. The beauty, the grace. I'm glad that this piece is being made, and that priority is given to the details. This will certainly become a master piece. Any idea about the price setting (400 USD - 1000 USD ?, and what about the limitation ?) Please give an estimation about the price, so that we can start saving. Hide.
2 of 2 people found this useful.