Cast & Crew
John Rhys-Davies

September 4, 1999

John Rhys-Davies is Gimli
Darren Bradnick

Darren Bradnick of Cambridge has sent in a very interesting story that quite possibly reveals the identity of the actor who will be taking on the role of Gimli. While traveling to Birmingham Darren ran across actor John Rhys-Davies who informed him he was on his way to New Zealand to play Gimli in New Line Cinema's Lord of the Rings Trilogy. Below are the details of Darren's adventure:

My name is Darren and I have story to tell. The text below is an honestly true account of an event which happened today.

I found your site after learning about The Lord Of The Rings movie at about 08:00 (GMT) on 3 September 1999.

I have personally spoken the actor who is playing the part of Gimli in the movie. This is my story...

Me and two other colleagues were flying to Birmingham UK on the 3rd September 1999 on the 07:00 flight. In the departure lounge, we spotted a well known British actor who has been in many blockbuster movies and also stars in a Science Fiction TV series. When we boarded the aircraft, he sat about 7 seats behind me, right at the back of the aircraft.

Arriving at Birmingham Airport we proceeded to the luggage collection point, where the said actor was also waiting for luggage. I stood about 2 feet away from him, and when he caught me watching him, he gave me a wink, as if to acknowledge that he knew what I knew. I suppose celebrities can and do go places without ever being properly noticed, but this was not the time nor place for this actor, he had been recognized. So, I decided to chance polite conversation:

Me: Good morning

John: Good morning sir

Me: Did you enjoy the flight?

John (Laughing): You can only enjoy a flight when you are doing the flying. But it does not stop here, tomorrow I am leaving for New Zealand.

Me: Oh, business or pleasure?

John: We will be there shooting for the Lord Of The Rings movie over a period of 15 months.

Me: Lord Of The Rings? Wow, that is one of my favourite novels! Are you in the cast?

John (Laughing): Yes, I am playing Gimli the Dwarf. Should be interesting.

At this point our luggage came round, and John collected his cases, one of which was a very large and a very bright yellow Samsonite.

Me: Well, have a good trip tomorrow, it was a pleasure meeting you.

John: Thank you. Take care.

We proceeded away from the luggage collection point. I was behind John as he pushed his large trolley and his big yellow case. On entering the main area of the building, John immediately recognized a female friend, around the age of 50, who was obviously there waiting for him, they exchanged greetings, and kissed warmly, and then they were gone.

John Rhys-Davies is best known to film audiences for his roles in such blockbusters hits as Raiders of the Lost Ark and Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade. He has also had leading roles in Victor, Victoria, The Living Daylights and King Solomon's Mines. His television credits include such well-received mini-series as James Clavell's Shogun and Noble House, Great Expectations, War and Remembrance and Archaeology.

Thanks to Darren for sending this in and for the filmography info above!