The Lord of The Rings by J. R. R. Tolkien has ignited imaginations and shaped the dreams of more than 100 million readers around the globe since it was first published in 1954. Now the legend that Tolkien wrought is being brought to life on the motion picture screen, an undertaking that has required nothing less than the most colossal movie production ever. The trilogy of films chronicles extraordinary adventures across the treacherous landscape of Middle-earth and reveals how the power of friendship, love and courage can hold the forces of darkness at bay.
A shy young Hobbit, Frodo Baggins (Elijah Wood) inherits a ring, but this ring is no mere trinket. It is the One Ring, an instrument of absolute power that would allow Sauron, the Dark Lord of Mordor, to rule Middle-earth and enslave its peoples -- unless Frodo and a loyal fellowship of Hobbits (Sean Astin, Billy Boyd, and Dominic Monaghan), Men (Sean Bean, Viggo Mortensen), a Wizard (Ian McKellen), a Dwarf (John Rhys-Davies), and an Elf (Orlando Bloom) succeed in taking the Ring across Middle-earth to the Crack of Doom where it first was forged, and destroy it forever. Such a journey means venturing deep into territory held by the Dark Lord, where he is amassing his army of Orcs. It is not only external evils the Fellowship must combat, but also internal dissension and the corrupting influence of the Ring itself. The course of future history is entwined with the fate of the Fellowship.
Samwise Gamgee (Sean Astin) is Frodo's bravest companion and closest friend. Sam has thus far led a quiet life, but his loyalty to Frodo will lead him on a perilous journey. Sean was drawn to a character who seems to define the best of Hobbit-hood. "To me, he personifies decency, simplicity, honesty and loyalty, the ultimate Hobbit. Most of all, he has an undying friendship with Frodo that is so strong he's willing to face the adventure of the unknown to help him. I look at him as this kind of pastoral figure, a farmer whose hands are always in the soil. He's not the most sophisticated being in the Fellowship, but he makes up for it with his earnest steadiness."
Director Peter Jackson, whose visionary style of filmmaking and emotional acuity won accolades for his Heavenly Creatures and The Frighteners, brings his deep love for the source material to the project.
Produced by Barrie M. Osborne, the films feature a strong international cast that includes (in alphabetical order) Sean Astin, Sean Bean, Cate Blanchett, Orlando Bloom, Billy Boyd, Brad Dourif, Ian Holm, Christopher Lee, Ian McKellen, Dominic Monaghan, Viggo Mortensen, John Rhys-Davis, Andy Serkis, Liv Tyler, and Elijah Wood.
The Fellowship of the Ring opened December 19th, 2001. The Two Towers opened December 18th, 2002. The Return of the King opens worldwide in December 2003.