Stephen Fry cast as The Master of Laketown

Sir Peter Jackson has cast English actor and comedian Stephen Fry as The Master of Laketown in his Hobbit movies:

Some more HOBBIT casting news today. As we near the end of our first shooting block (we have a break in less than three weeks to get some editing and visual effects work done, plus prepare for very big scenes coming up), we are looking at characters featuring in sequences that take place a little later in the story.

We are thrilled to confirm that Stephen Fry will be playing The Master of Laketown. I’ve known Stephen for several years, and we’re developing a DAMBUSTERS movie together. In addition to his writing skills, he’s a terrific actor and will create a very memorable Master for us.

The Master’s conniving civil servant, Alfrid will be played by Ryan Gage. Ryan is a great young actor who we originally cast in a small role, but we liked him so much, we promoted him to the much larger Alfrid part.

ource: Peter Jackson

World’s First Hobbit Movie Cover

Empire, the first magazine in the world to put The Hobbit on its cover.

Over ten years ago, catching a whiff something really big was going down in New Zealand, Empire decided to feature the next film from promising Kiwi director Peter Jackson on its cover. After all, he just happened to be making The Lord Of The Rings. Listen closely to his commentary on Return Of The King and Jackson actually recalls the day that issue of Empire arrived on set — he couldn’t quite get his head around the fact they were still shooting! To paraphrase someone in a black and white movie, it was the start of a beautiful friendship.

So in honour of Jackson’s long-awaited return to Middle-earth for two dragon-and-dwarf-laden prequels — as a “good luck charm” according the director — Empire takes its symbolic and rightful place as the first magazine in the world to put The Hobbit on its cover. A resplendent ‘younger’ Gandalf the Grey (look closely for subtle differences in costume from his 60-year older Rings self) taking centre stage alongside the first look at Martin Freeman’s Bilbo Baggins (keep your eyes peeled for a hint or two of dwarf in the issue).

Personally invited onto the set barely a month into production, Empire delightedly watched a film — two films — already in full swing. Thirteen cantankerous dwarves, one barely tolerant wizard, and a befuddled hobbit are seen arriving at the gates of Rivendell and sneered at by local elves. Jackson assures us he is once again reaching for the mighty spectacle of Lord Of The Rings, but also bringing a certain ‘Hobbity-ness’ all its own. “The tone is actually the part of it I’m enjoying the most,” he laughs, casting a fond eye upon his rabble of exotic dwarves, clattering about set like they own the place. “They have a healthy disregard for the icons of Middle-earth.”

For the full story see the August issue of Empire out on June 30.

Source: Empire Magazine

First Look at Balin and Dwalin in The Hobbit

Dwarf Lords in their own right, Balin and Dwalin are close relatives of Thorin. Beyond this, these brothers are two of his most loyal and trusted friends.

An old warrior, Balin has lived through hard times and fought many battles, yet he harbors doubts about the wisdom of the Quest to retake the Lonely Mountain.

Dwalin has no such forebodings – his belief in Thorin’s leadership is unshakeable. A powerful and bruising fighter, with a natural tendency to distrust anyone who is not a Dwarf, particularly anyone who might be an Elf, Dwalin is not someone to cross lightly

Orlando Bloom thrills Wellington shoppers

Hollywood star Orlando Bloom has been seen out and about in Wellington, joining a growing number of Hobbit actors arriving in the city as production resumes after a three-month hiatus. Wellingtonians Miranda Webster, Aggie Galloway, Kayla Carruthers, Sam Walton and Hannah Robson met Bloom yesterday when they saw him shopping in the central city. Ms […]

The Alamo Drafthouse Harry Potter Feast


Butter Beer

The Alamo Drafthouse Harry Potter Feast   

Hungry for Harry Potter? The Alamo Drafthouse presents a special feast of mouth-watering, magical entrées for moviegoers heading to their cinemas to watch Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2. Even if you don’t live near a Drafthouse theater, you can still feast your eyes on what Executive Chef John Bullington has concocted in this exclusive gallery. Here, Bullington provides his inspirations for each dish, keeping the theme of objects important to the film.

The Elder Wand

The Elder Wand

We start with one of the Deathly Hallows, the Elder Wand. It is an English Ale-battered asparagus spear wrapped in smoked salmon and elderberry garlic jam.




Forbidden Forrest Pasty

Forbidden Forrest Pasty

For the second entrée, a pasty is offered which is traditionally a pie crust filled with savory ingredients and baked like a dumpling or empanada. Rather than put potatoes, found in most pasties, inside the filling we made the pastry for it out of potato. The filling evokes the woods, consisting of roasted fresh local hens, wild mushrooms and herbs. It is served with a green tomato, cherry chutney.




The third dish is Amortentia (not pictured) which is the most intense love potion wizards know. It is a simple cool puree of English Cucumber with crispy bacon and fresh herbs.





Many of the meals prepared in Harry Potter are over the top, fantastical events with heaps of food. This is inspired by the cloak of invisibility from the film as things aren’t quite what they seem as the ingredients are hidden from sight by a pastry and only revealed once you remove it. The entrée is a slight twist on Beef Wellington with seared N.Y. strip topped with Stilton and shaved shallot wrapped in pastry and roasted to a nice golden crust.

The Sorcerer’s Scone

The Sorcerer's Scone

Dessert for the film is a simple goofy pun, which we tend to love. It is a sweet blackberry/buttermilk scone with lime marmalade and clotted cream. The scones are baked quickly and to order while traditional clotted cream is slowly reduced overnight resulting in a thick caramel like cream.


Summer Pudding

Summer Pudding

This entrée is only available on the Harry Potter Marathon Menu, a special offering of a la carte dishes exclusive to the eight film marathon screenings. The Potter Marathon Specials are all old favorites brought back from our past Potter menus. The summer pudding is a classic dessert, perfect for the summer as buttery bread is stuffed with the summer’s finest berries and transformed into a sweet stuffed cake.

Mrs. Weasley’s Onion Soup

Mrs. Weasley's Onion Soup

Also part of the Harry Potter Marathon Menu, we represent the most prolific cook of the series, Mrs. Weasley, with a soup full of onions, topped with garlic chives, and toasted bread topped with a chive-laced English Cheddar.



Seared Trout Salad

Seared Trout Salad

The Harry Potter Specials Menu features a la carte dishes for the run of the film, including a seared trout salad. My ancestors came from England and when visiting there many years ago I stumbled upon Bullington Manor in the small town of Bullington. Through the estate ran a gold medal trout stream, so trout is often something I think of when creating British recipes. It is served with a spicy Colman’s Mustard thyme dressing, teardrop tomatoes, rashers of bacon and blackberries. It has simple yet distinct flavors which come together quite nicely.

John Bullington

Introducing…John Bullington, the Alamo Drafthouse’s Executive Chef. His Harry Potter themed menu keeps the British essence of the films and offers all sorts of ingredients and cooking styles found in Great Britain.

Pearl Jam Twenty documentary


By: Derrick Deane on July 27, 2011 at 4:56PM

Directed by Cameron Crowe, Pearl Jam Twenty (shortened to PJ20) features never-before-seen footage of Eddie Vedder and his bandmates, along with commentary from Soundgarden’s Chris Cornell and Alice in Chains’ now-deceased Layne Staley, as they adjust to their rise to superstardom. Crowe has brought us previous music documentaries featuring Tom Petty and Alice in Chains, so you could say this is familiar territory for the former Rolling Stone magazine freelancer. The footage and soundtrack look great and this is sure to be a must-see for Pearl fans when it hits theaters sometime in September.

Pearl Jam Twenty from Pearl Jam on Vimeo.

The above article has to do with one of my art pieces: “A Vedder Jam.”

Prince Harry Stars In Graphic Novel

‘The Royals: Prince Harry’ Available At Comic Retailers August 24

By the CNN Wire Staff
(CNN) — A comic book chronicling the life of Prince Harry of Wales will be released in late August, publishers announced Thursday.”It’s time to focus our attention on the Wild Child, Prince Harry. … Prince William might be the one getting married, but Prince Harry continues to make waves all over the world,” publisher Bluewater Productions said.

“The Royals: Prince Harry” will join the graphic novel series dedicated to Harry’s brother William and his wife, Kate Middleton. “The Royals: Prince William and Kate Middleton” was released in April to coincide with the royal wedding.

“As Americans, we are fascinated by the British royals. They fit within our construct of a celebrity-fueled popular culture. But more than that, they represent an air of pomp and history that we just don’t have,” author C.W. Cooke said.Cooke has written comics for multiple series including “Female Force,” which features the life stories of “strong women in politics” such as U.S. first lady Michelle Obama and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, according to the company’s website.

“The Royals: Prince Harry,” featuring art by Justin Currie, will be available at comic retailers August 24. The standard comic will cost $3.99, but a collector’s graphic novel will also be available online for $7.99, according to the statement.