New York Comic Con 2013 – The TORn Panel

DoS poster

Sadly, this year’s Comic Con did not turn out the way I hoped.

I have been going to the NY Comic Con for several years, and have always enjoyed it. This year I thought, well, The Hobbit: Desolation of Smaug is a big movie this year. There is a great chance that it will be featured by the Comic Con, right? I sent emails and tweets to the Comic Con, hoping that The Hobbit: DoS would feature in the program. Sadly, it did not.

The only Hobbit-related content was from The One – TORn. They had a panel on Sunday at 12:00  entitled “An Unofficial Sneak Peek of The Desolation of Smaug“. I thought, perhaps there would be a surprise cast member or two attending. I got on the line for the panel at 10:45. The line was shut down by 11:15. I got into the room.

There were three TORn staffers heading up the panel. The most notable (to me) being Kristin (Green Dragon) who interviewed Richard Armitage during the promo for AUJ. KatherineD mentioned it in her post on Me + Richard Armitage HERE. No cast members.

The panel was focused on analyzing the two trailers of DoS that have been released, plus a little added background that the staffers had gleaned from TPTB connected to DoS.


There was some information about Tauriel, the elf played by Evangeline Lilly. Apparently, she dies at some point. 😦  Not surprising, I guess, since she does not appear in the LOTR movies. Apparently both Legolas and Kili are in love with her. What! Not in the books for sure!

They pointed out that Bilbo doesn’t look invisible in the trailers. That Legolas still has Orcrist when he is shown in Laketown. That Legolas’s eyes are bluer than they were in LOTR. That Jimmy Nesbitt’s (Bofur) daughters appear as Bard’s daughters in the pictures released a couple of days ago.

There was also a vote about what the end of DoS would be. The death of Smaug, or Smaug leaving the mountain. What do you think??

One other thing is regarding the spiders of Mirkwood. The TORn panel thought they were a big LARGE for Mirkwood spiders, looking as big as Shelob in LOTR, which they clearly were not suppose to do. Will they talk? Unknown. Also, in the books Bilbo defeats them. In the movie it appears that he has help from Legolas and Tauriel.

Re Tauriel – the panel asked for the fans to be tolerant of her. They clearly love Evangeline Lilly and are concerned that negative fan opinion will be devastating to her. She put “her heart and soul” into the role. I have no problem with her. I like her.

Green Dragon said that she did not think Stephen Fry was a good choice for Master of Laketown. What do you think?

TORn is apparently deep in debt from the Oscar party they hosted earlier this year. If you care about their website, contribute if you get a chance! They provide a great service to Tolkien lovers everywhere.

RA thorin in river

We had a giggle about the “Barrel Ride” sure to be a hit of Disney’s The Hobbit adventureland at some point.

Re Thorin – the audience was remarkably silent when he was onscreen. Legolas was clearly the favorite of the NY Comic Con audience. Everyone was like <sigh> Legolas… They just loved him. Thorin, not so much.

One last thing – I met RA Central NYC !! Julie and I connected! So fun to meet another RAddict!! 😀




From New York City. Anglophile, theater-goer, love books, music and LIFE.
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27 Responses to New York Comic Con 2013 – The TORn Panel

  1. Perry says:

    Sorry you were disappointed. I wonder why PJ and Warner Bros. thought it wan’t worth it to put much effort into either of the US ComicCons? Maybe everyone is out doing other promotions? Orlando Bloom would have had shows for R & J all nights and Sunday afternoon – so it would have been a push for him to show and sit there for a number of hours.

  2. kelbel75 says:

    I figured this movie was going to focus heavily on Legolas as the heartthrob, blah. no offense to Orlando, but he just doesn’t do it for me. and now I am apprehensive concerning Tauriel. I know Evangeline is a cutie in real life, but being a “Lost” fan I do not want to see another Kate 😉 thanks for this info though, it is new and interesting to me! 🙂

  3. Servetus says:

    This was interesting to read. Thanks for writing it all down. I also read something this week somewhere (maybe Atlantic Wire?) about the differences between NY and SD — the article said the studios are only really interested in SD. Don’t know how true that is.

    I guess I get annoyed when I hear fans telling fellow fans what they should think before any of them have even seen something. Not that it will have an ounce of effect, IMO.

    But why is it okay to tell the audience not to hate on Evangeline Lilly, but then say Stephen Fry was the wrong choice for the Master of Laketown? Or is just that they can’t say, go ahead and hate on Jackson, because he’s the one who created this extra character, because Ringers have the rep of being generally Jackson-friendly? I honestly have no associations with either character, so I’m not in the target audience for the problem, but Lilly will have known when she took the role that this problem might be on her radar.

    • Marie Astra says:

      Yes, I’m sure EL was aware of the potential for fan backlash at her character. The panelists were being very candid in expressing opinions – making it clear that they are FANS not anyone official. Green Dragon did say that it was her personal feeling about Fry and that she hoped she was wrong. Their opinions of EL seemed just heartfelt based on the fact that she had been at the SD Con and they were concerned about her. The whole panel was “Unofficial” – TORn is a fan website. To us they seem so authoritative, but they made it very clear that they are not..

      • Servetus says:

        well, I don’t think we’re the only people who experience their opinions as somewhat domineering, but we are one group.

      • Marie Astra says:

        Indeed. Interesting tidbit – TORn is $80,000 in debt due to their party for the Academy Awards that they gave this year. Yikes.

      • Servetus says:

        yes, I found that somewhat surprising / sobering myself.

      • Marie Astra says:

        They mentioned it, but didn’t seem too concerned about it. They had an exhibit on the floor, but were not selling too much – a few t-shirts and buttons. Then they were accepting contributions.

      • Servetus says:

        it sounds from their FB page like they are losing their tolerance from Sol Zaentz Co re: licensing of Hobbit-themed products. I wonder whether that’s significant at all.

      • Marie Astra says:

        Huh. Interesting. They did feature the cartoon Bilbo from the old Hobbit cartoon movie in their presentation. Was that Zaentz? Interesting. I was thinking what would happen to them after the Hobbit movies.

  4. KatharineD says:

    Marie, I’m sorry Comic Con wasn’t all you hoped it would be- you had good reason to expect a bit more, especially when dwarf actors have been popping up all over the place, including Boston. I saw photos of the crowds, and wondered how you got on. Do you plan how to navigate the weekend in advance, or wing it when you get there? I can’t personally imagine going to that type of event on multiple days.
    Thanks for the mention and link to my article.

    • Marie Astra says:

      It is SO crowded that you really have to plan out what you will do. You can’t do more than a couple of things in a day. Having been to both San Diego and New York Comic Cons, I have to say I much preferred San Diego. I saw multiple panels of casts of different tv shows in San Diego. I didn’t see the movie panels there because the lines were so daunting. In NY you couldn’t even see the tv panels unless that is all you wanted to do. Most of the con was not interesting to me – lots about anime and I’m not into that at all.

      • KatharineD says:

        Did you end up seeing John Barrowman and Gareth David-Lloyd?

      • Marie Astra says:

        I saw John Barrowman signing autographs. Didn’t see Gareth David-Lloyd. They changed the set-up so the lines stretch so far and it’s so crowded you can’t see the people signing. You used to be able to see them much closer.

  5. Faboamanto says:

    I’m sorry it wasn’t what you expected. I was surprised that none of The Hobbit actors showed up at all also, maybe the organizers weren’t into TH so didn’t invite them since most of the dwarf cast seem pretty interested in going to these events. I’m so surprised that TORn is that much in debt, maybe PJ should make a big donation to them. Very interesting report.

    • Servetus says:

      Indeed, the ones on Twitter have repeatedly said, I don’t decide, if you want me to come, make your wishes known to people who do.

    • Marie Astra says:

      Yes, I was pretty shocked to hear about the debt! They are not going to do another party like that next year! Although they did say they would do another party in 2015 for the last movie. New York Comic Con is weird, in my opinion. Being the hub for publicity in the US I’m amazed they don’t feature more movie content. Seems like they restrict it to comics, anime and television. Oh well.

      • micra1 says:

        If they didn’t pretend absurd postal expenses I’d bought some t-shirt from their site, but I felt cheated and bought nothing. Sorry NYCC wasn’t as you expected 😦 and sorry about indifference towards Thorin 😦 I always said (since last March) that DoS was being focused on Elves (too much for my likes and for movie’s original book cohesion), and now I’m sure about it. I don’t care about Tauriel (also don’t like EL at all) and fear the “love story” very much. Did we need it? Nevertheless I keep my faith on JP and hope Tauriel will be meaningful.
        I suppose PJ chose not to do NYCC because it’s too early and they will flood us since mid-November with information and press videos & interviews. I think they fear the “Curse of the Middle Episode” and will spare no efforts to sell it. Not going to NYCC could end as being a big mistake, though.
        Regarding Stephen Fry: I adore the man, so I can’t actually think how could it be a mistake to have him in ANY project 😛 but I actually have no way to rebut or support Green Dragon’s opinion. He’s one of the thing I expect more on DoS.
        Thanks for your report 🙂

      • Marie Astra says:

        I think the love story will not be central, just giving more story to Tauriel. I agree with your faith in PJ. He knows what he’s doing. The New York CC is not a big venue for movies. No big movies showcased there. Lots of television. Even the celebrities were television oriented – X-Files, William Shatner, Torchwood. Thanks for commenting! 😀

  6. Pingback: No Hobbit actors at NYC ComicCon, but: Would you buy something from this dwarf? | Me + Richard Armitage

  7. AgzyM says:

    I’m so sorry that things weren’t different. I remember how people who wrote and asked about The Hobbit panel were teased that there’s some sort of surprise coming. I guess the surprise was that it’d be crapaloo 😦

  8. Pingback: Pondering Peter Jackson, The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug, and vision realized in the presence of one’s audience | Me + Richard Armitage

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