June 19, 2001

To One Devastated By Casting
Louie V.

Leonides covered quite a bit in the response to RingGirl, but there are a couple things I’d like to add to this little soiree…

The hobbits were called “halflings” for a reason. Pippin was mistaken for a youth in Minas Tirith, for example. I thought the frame in the trailer was dead on; they looked like a bunch of kids standing there until you took a good look at them. And the subtleties from the first trailer as they are all passing the rock; beautiful! I am glad to see how fluidly everything is fitting together. I really don’t have much more to say in response to this paragraph because I simply didn’t get the point.

It seems that some may have very short memories if they consider Viggo Mortensen as “young”. I’ll have to take that as an oblique compliment, though, being six months older than he is (I’m 43). But reach back into your memory when Stuart Townsend was originally cast. He’s not even going to be 30 until “The Two Towers” comes out!!! Talk about an audible groan when I heard that bit of casting! When RingGirl says he doesn’t look like he’s had “a hard life and a long”; I’d have to disagree? He looks like he’s been “rode hard and put up wet”. If anything, maybe a bit too grungy. Yes, Aragorn was in his sixties during the War, but he lived to be, what? Two hundred and something? He’s not going to look “old” so much as worn. I think Mortensen’s great for the role (although I’d always thought of Aragorn with a bit more beard).

RingGirl; Madeline Stowe is 42 years old! Great actress, but good grief! She’d look older than Blanchett as Galadriel! No way there… And who says that Éowyn was “the impressionable maiden who has a girlish crush on Aragorn”? Certainly not Tolkien! She was a mature warrior maiden. Éowyn was born in 2995, so she’d be right at 23 during the War. And re-read their parting before Aragorn leaves for the Paths of the Dead; he was affected by her care and concern and didn’t consider her “girlish”. Nor was she treated as an “impressionable maiden” by the other warriors. They knew she was a capable shieldmaiden and concealed her presence from the king.

I certainly agree that Liam Neeson would have fit the bill for Aragorn (being one of my favorite actors), but I can’t speak to his being a “pretty face” … I’ll leave that to you. But you should know that he’s only six years older than Viggo Mortensen, and that’s just a drop in the bucket for us old farts.