“Bilbo Baggins. I’m looking for someone to share in an adventure.”
-Gandalf to Bilbo before a possible unexpected journey
One of the many statues Weta Workshop had at Comic-Con 2012 for The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey was Gandalf the Grey. On October 1st, 2012, fans around the world got the chance to order this amazing statue, as Gandalf was one of three statues that were in-stock that day. Thankfully, Gandalf is an open edition statue, allowing those of us who badly want this item a chance to add him to our collections.
On March 15th, 2941 at the Prancing Pony in Bree, Thorin Oakenshield met with Gandalf the Grey where a discussion took place about reclaiming Erebor. Gandalf was able to convince Thorin to make the journey to reclaim Erebor and help secure the North from potential future problems. Once again Gandalf would help play a pivotal role in helping make sure Middle-earth would not face certain dangers.
The graphics on the box for Gandalf are different than what we saw on the Thorin statue from Comic-Con with a much lighter color design and graphics on the box that are unique from anything done before. Instead of the gold lining of the Thorin box there is soft, dwarvis-like art. Also, the front has a great shot of Gandalf, graphic work for the title of the movie, Weta logo, and the name of the character. The sides present a couple of different looks with one showing great shots of Gandalf from different angles, while the other side shows some of the other products that will be coming out for The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey. The back of the box contains a great story on Gandalf and his importance to the events of The Hobbit. Inside the Styrofoam did its job to keep the statue safe, and the base is secured to Gandalf so its part of the statue.
Steven Saunders, who you’ve seen us talk about before from Weta, was chosen to bring Gandalf the Grey to life. To say that he was successful is an understatement: this is one of the best representations of this character we’ve seen. The likeness to Sir Ian McKellen is really fantastic with the proper amount of wrinkles, detail in the hair on his head as well as his beard. The detail in his outfit is also fantastic with such detailed work on his cloak and robes that it looks like it could be real clothing. One nice detail is the blue belt he wears which sports great looking elf runes in silver going down the sashes. Not to be left out in the cold is Gandalf’s hat which, like the rest of his outfit, has great detail and is a separate piece that it fits nice and snug on his head. The final great touch on the sculpting portion of this piece is the staff, which is obviously different from the staffs Gandalf uses in The Lord of the Rings. This part of the statue is really nicely done and has a really sweet detail with a G rune sculpted in the staff. From top to bottom this statue is a must have for any collector.
The paintwork on Gandalf is really well done. You have great clean lines and the details are brought out even moreso by the wonderful paint job. The skin tones are fantastic and the detailing really makes the statue have very crisp look to the facial details. The clothing of the statue looks great and very much matches up with what we’ve seen so far in the trailers. The small details on his belt are well done for such small detailed parts of the piece. The hat also has a great paint job as well, and has the color difference we’ve seen from Gandalf in various pictures over the years. Gandalf’s staff looks like a real staff, which is obviously the goal, but Weta has done a fantastic job in completing this task.
Gandalf retails for $250 on Weta’s website. As I said, I think Weta was successful in creating one of the best representations of this character that we’ve seen. This statue, besides looking like Gandalf, feels like the character as well. I love the little details in this piece like the robes gently flowing in the wings, small runes on his belt, and the rune on the staff. There is really nothing to not like about this statue and collectors are lucky that this statue is an open edition.