Famous Tolkien and Lord of the Rings fans (24.09.11 by Pieter Collier) -
We have a small planet and on it live an incredible amount of people. Many do share a strong love for the books of Tolkien and even more so have a deep love for The Lord of the Rings movies. Many celebrities do love books or movies and while most of the time we don't know for sure, there are many famous Tolkien fans out there. Here is a list of famous Tolkien fans and celebrities who like The Lord of the Rings. if you know any others, please feel free to send over the info and we can add them to the list. Probably with The Hobbit movies coming there will be many more that will come out and tell us all about their passion!
President Obama is a fan of at least one comic book superhero (Spiderman), and Lord of the Rings devotees should be comforted to know they have a compatriot in the White House. Obama revealed these and other details to two Scholastic News Kids Press Corps reporters in an exclusive July interview.
"When I was your age… I’d probably gotten a little too old for the Hardy Boys and that stuff," Obama told Topanga Sena, 10, of Orlando, Florida, and Jacob Schroeder, 11, of Albuquerque, New Mexico. "I think I was getting into the Lord of the Rings and the Hobbit and stuff like that."
"They weren’t just kind of adventure stories but they were stories that taught me about social problems," Obama said of the books he favored in his pre-teen years. "Taught me about how people interact with each other…about how some people are kind and some people are cruel."
Queen Margrethe II
, is the queen regnant of Denmark. She is also an artist, whose works have been inspired by J.R.R. tolkien's literature from a very young age. Her works of art are examined in the film documentary J.R.R.T. : A Film Portrait Of J.R.R. Tolkien
In the eary 1970s, the Queen was inspired to illustrate The Lord of the Rings
. She sent her illustrations to Tolkien, who was struck by the similarity to the style of his own drawings. In 1977, Queen Margrethe's drawings were published in the Danish translation of the book (Ringenes Herre, edition by publishers Gyldendal; one illustration for each chapter), redrawn by the British artist Eric Fraser.
Under the pseudonym Ingahild Grathmer her illustrations were also featured in a British edition of The Lord of the Rings
, published by HarperCollins and The Folio Society. Queen Margrethe gave permission to use her illustrations in the CD layouts for the musical interpretation of the poems and songs from The Lord of the Rings
by the Danish music group The Tolkien Ensemble
British royal Prince Charles is a Tolkien fan, according to the Telegraph. One thing is certain he went to visit Peter Jackson in New-Zealand and got to see the first The Hobbit movie before the rest of the world did. As a lifelong fan of JRR Tolkien, the Prince of Wales was never going to refuse the opportunity of a sneak preview of the new film of The Hobbit, even if it means going all the way to New Zealand for the privilege.
“The Prince is a great fan of children’s literature and Tolkien is one of the great icons of children’s literature,” said a royal source. “He and the Duchess have seen Peter Jackson’s Lord of the Rings films and the Prince has said he is very much looking forward to seeing Bilbo Baggins’s foot.”
British royal Prince William is a massive fan of The Hobbit, according to actor Martin Freeman. He also went to the première of the Hobbit. Ok that makes him a movie fan, but perhaps a little bit a Tolkien fan as well?
Freeman, who portrays Bilbo Baggins in director Peter Jackson's adaptations of J. R. R. tolkien's classic book, met the royal at the premiere of the first film, An Unexpected Journey, in 2012, and was shocked with how much William knew about the story.
He tells Britain's Daily Mirror newspaper, "He was a nice guy. He is the biggest royal fan. We have fans everywhere, it is a very beloved book... He knew all the facts about Middle Earth and I think I kept him talking too long. You know the protocol, you have got to let them say what they want to say and let them move on but I think I was boring him a little bit as I held onto him, talking about Middle Earth."
Another statesman being a fan of Tolkien is Árpád Göncz
, former President of Hungary. During the 1980s he translated The Lord of the Rings
and Farmer Giles of Ham
to Hungarian. He also submitted a statement of appreciation of Tolkien to The Centenary Conference 1992
(appearing in a booklet
published in occasion of the conference).
Árpád Göncz wrote that The Lord of the Rings
”serves as a positive role model in our dehumanized world as well as an exciting lecture […] it helped transform our world into one smiling global village”.
Pope Francis, is a Tolkien fan. Our friends at Tolkien Brasil mentioned, Cardinal Bergoglio (as he was then) mentioned tolkien's writings in a sermon in 2008, when - talking about life being an ongoing journey of hope - he compared the journeys of Bilbo and Frodo to those of Aeneas, Odysseus and Biblical characters such as Abraham and the Israelites in the wilderness. On January 31, 2014 the official newspaper of the Vatican "L'Osservatore Romano" published a related text theology of the Lord of the Rings. The article was written by Sir David Moxon, Archbishop of Canterbury.
, the host of Comedy Central's The Colbert Report, is an American comedian, satirist, actor, and writer known for his ironic style, particularly in his portrayal of uninformed opinion leaders and deadpan comedic delivery.
Stephen Colbert developed a love of science fiction and fantasy novels, especially the works of J. R. R. Tolkien, of which he remains an avid fan. J.R.R. tolkien's The Lord of the Rings
story will often show through in the Report
. However, Colbert tries to limit references to The Lord of the Rings
because he says, as a fan, he does not want to "debase" tolkien's work by having his character like it. One thing is certain he loves to show his amazing The Lord of the Rings collectables
is an American actor, film director, producer, screenwriter, author, painter, performance artist and professor at New York University.
During James Franco's appearance on The Colbert Report
he managed to get into an intense argument with Stephen Colbert
over who had been the bigger fan of The Lord of the Rings
author J.R.R. Tolkien growing up.
Film actor Christoper Lee
is next to Saruman in The Lord of the Rings
movies also a huge fan of Tolkien.
He has a huge respect for the author Tolkien as you can read in the following quote:
"What Professor Tolkien achieved is unique in the literature of my lifetime. Indeed, in my opinion, he had reached the peak of literary invention of all time. Nothing like it has ever existed, and probably never will."
Chrsitopher Lee had met Tolkien once (making him the only person in The Lord of the Rings
film trilogy to have done so) and makes a habit of reading the novels at least once a year.
Next to this Christopher Lee became an active participant, both as narrator and singer, at the album and concerts of The Tolkien Ensemble
. Of all famous people Christopher Lee is probably the biggest Tolkien fan of all!
Nicolas Cage turned downed to play Aragorn in The Lord of the Rings movies, since it would have just been too much for him. Filming in New Zealand, thousands of miles away from his family was one thing. But when he heard the production would take years, Nicolas Cage handed over the role of Aragorn to Viggo Mortensen.
"I thought what Viggo did was terrific," Cage told MTV in an interview after the film was released. And that's about all he thought. "I just want to think about his character. I don't think about what I would've done," he added.
In Empire magazine of May 2010 we can read Nicolas Cage tell abou this favorite moment from the movie:
"I'm a huge fan of Lord Of The Rings. And I think the moment when Gollum goes into the river of fire and becomes an unlikely hero is the most profound. When that happens, and evil and good combine to save the world, that's the most philosophically interesting moment of the whole trilogy."
Megan Fox has admitted to being a huge fan of The Lord Of The Rings trilogy and regularly uses internet forums dedicated to the films. According to PopEater, the 24-year-old star displayed an extensive knowledge of J.R.R. tolkien's literary classics and revealed that she is frustrated by fans that criticize Peter Jackson's Oscar-winning adaptations.
She said: "[Fans] complain that Frodo is eating the Lembas bread outside of Mordor instead of the in the Mines of Moria. And they get really mad. You cannot focus completely on pleasing them because you'll never win. They'll never be happy no matter what you do."
Another person who for sure loved The Lord of the Rings
but will probably not claim it with too many words is James Cameron
. In Empire magazine we could read about his favorite scene in the movie:
"I think the scene that blew me away and was probably a causal link to Avatar getting made, at least in the short term, was the scene where Gollum debates with himself what he should do. His schizophrenic fugue state was so beautifully realised, not only as a concept for a scene, but in terms of the execution and the fact that it was such a milestone in performance-capture CG. I was blown away by that scene and when there was talk about Andy Serkis getting an Oscar nomination for that role, I thought it was completely valid. It's a great performance."
During some interviews at several cons we learned that is was this exaxt scene that pushed James Cameron to work further on Avatar. He has also stated that with Avatar he wanted to compete with Star Wars and Tolkien
. While we know James Cameron has an enormous respect for Peter Jackson, we can probably add him to the list of Tolkien fans, while he will probably never say this himself. One thing is certain he sees the current work on The Hobbit
movies as an extra push to work harder and take our cinema experience to the next level!
In sports we can find several The Lord of the Rings
fans, like for example Ruud van Nistlerooy
Of course football players are never interviewed about their passion for Tolkien and so we have to learn it from other sources.
On fourfourtwo Dominic Monaghan
"I’ve become a good friend of Ruud van Nistlerooy, too, who was a big fan of Lord of the Rings
, and when Elijah and me turned up at United’s U.S. tour last year, he asked to meet up with us and we went with the players to a party at Venice Beach. I’ve kept in touch with Ruud since then and we exchange e-mails from time to time, so it doesn't feel like I'm so far away."
Dominic Monaghan even owns a Manchester United shirt with "Hobbit" printed on the back, which was presented to him by former Manchester United striker Ruud Van Nistelrooy.
Probably the best known Tolkien fan in footbal is Fernando Torres
. On his left arm he has "Fernando" tattooed in tengwar, which is a constructed script invented by J.R.R. Tolkien, the author of The Lord of the Rings
He is not the only soccer player with an Elvish tattoe
like this, for example Argentinian Sergio Agüero
has his nickname Kun Agüero written in Elvish on his right arm.
Orson Scott Card
is an American author who primarily writes science fiction and is best known for his amazing Ender's Game (Ender Series)
He even wrote an article on Tolkien for Meditations on Middle Earth
One of his famous quotes is:
"My favourite all-time work of fiction: Lord of the Rings
. My favourite all-time nonfiction book: Guns, Germs, and Steel. Ask me again next week, you'll get a different answer."
One thing is certain, for me Orson Scott Card's books is the next best thing after Tolkien and he for sure likes Tolkien as much as I do!
Isaac Asimov was a prolific science fiction author and polemic. As such, some of his writings discuss J.R.R. tolkien's thematics, especially the One Ring.
In a letter written to Charlotte and Denis Plimmer in 1967, Tolkien said that he seldom found any modern books that could hold his attention. One exception though was the science fiction of Isaac Asimov, which Tolkien said he enjoyed.
In an interview conducted in 1988, Asimov said that he "likes" Tolkien and that he has "read it five times" (likely referring to The Lord of the Rings).
The Beatles were Tolkien fans, and in the 1960s, they wanted to make their own adaptation of The Lord of the Rings.
As strange as it sounds, John Lennon was once pushing for a Beatles version of "Lord of the Rings." McCartney said, "John wanted us to buy the film rights to Lord of the Rings. It was very much his idea." The Beatles version would have had John Lennon playing the grasping, thieving creature Gollum, Paul McCartney as the hero Frodo, George Harrison as the wise wizard Gandalf and Ringo Starr playing Frodo’s devoted sidekick Sam. The Beatles plan fell flat when the author J.R.R. Tolkien, who still had the film rights, rejected the idea of the Beatles doing it.
Led Zeppelin is well known for their Tolkien inspired lyrics. It can also be noted that one of Robert Plant's dogs was named Strider.
Robert Plant was so much influenced by J. R. R. tolkien's books that it inspired lyrics in some early Led Zeppelin songs, most notably "The Battle of Evermore", "Misty Mountain Hop", "No Quarter", "Ramble On" and "Over the Hills and Far Away" contain verses referencing tolkien's The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit.
There are always discussions whether Robert Plant did really read a lot of Tolkien but I know some other people who named their dogs or even children after characters from tolkien's books and they all share one common thing: a love for Tolkien.
Everest conquerer Sir Edmund Hillary once credited a tour of Weta Workshop with restoring his confidence in New Zealand’s future, according to longtime friend Tom Scott.
"He was a huge fan of Lord of the Rings," says Scott. "He was a huge romantic, he loved the forces of good against the forces of evil. He took Richard Taylor and Peter Jackson aside and said 'I’ve been a little despondent about the future of New Zealand, but today’s been an absolute tonic. You’ve made me confident in New Zealand’s future'."
Venture capitalist Peter Thiel, the first outside investor in Facebook, is a huge fan of J. R. R. tolkien's Lord of the Rings. So much so that he held some of the Facebook shares he just sold through tolkien-named entities, Lembas LLC and Rivendell One LLC.
One source who claims to be close to Thiel says there's an in-joke about his venture-capital firm, the Founders Fund, being nicknamed "The Precious."
Thiel also runs Valar Ventures, an early-stage venture-capital firm focused on overseas investments. And he recently started Mithril Capital Management, a growth fund. In 2004, Thiel cofounded Palantir, a maker of information-analysis tools used by corporations and government agencies.
Christopher John Farley
is a senior writer and the pop music critic for Time Magazine. He appears frequently on MTV, VH1, MSNBC, Fox and CNN to talk about music and pop culture.
He is the author of "My Favorite War
," and is working on his second novel set in the 19th century in Jamaica.
During the celebration for the 75th Anniversary was interviewed on Lunch Break Live
at The Wall Street Journal and turned out a big fan with quit a big knowledge on all things Tolkien.
During the interview with Christopher Farley on the Hobbit 75th anniversary the anchor of Lunch Break Live, Gwendolyn Bounds, tells us she is a huge Tolkien fan and has read all the books and watched the movies.
Gwendolyn (Wendy) Bounds is anchor of The Wall Street Journal's daily noon news & lifestyle show "Lunch Break." She is also host and Managing Editor of WSJ's "Off Duty" channel on YouTube.
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