The countdown is ON and Hobbit fans around the world are anxiously awaiting Peter Jackson‘s final installment in his epic Tolkien saga, which began nearly two decades ago with his monumentally successful Lord of the Rings trilogy, and now culminates with his final offering, The Hobbit: The Battle of The Five Armies which promises to be ‘THE Defining Chapter’!
Almost as exciting as seeing the film itself, is watching the lavishly glamorous red carpet premiere’s that have been staged around the world…multiple premiere’s for each film’s opening. How they actually pick the locations for each premiere is anybody’s guess, but fans have already begun placing bets on where the final celebrations will take place for what is sure to be the A-list party of the decade!
The Hobbit International Red Carpets
The obvious locations are New Zealand, where all the films were shot, and conveniently located just down the street from Peter Jackson’s pad…so everyone will have a place to crash after the parties have ended. (Can you say Hobbit sleepover?) London, LA and NYC are the usual ‘whistle stops’ along most film premiere routes. Last year Spain, Switzerland, and even Berlin each got to host The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug‘s glitterati… with Berlin, surprisingly, putting on the most off-the-hook, impressive premiere ever!
So, the burning question on MANY a Hobbit fan’s lips is which cities/countries will be lucky enough to be chosen to host the likes of Sir Ian McKellen, Cate Blanchett, Richard Armitage and Benedict Cumberbatch? Well, I know one country who has a group of devoted fans that are clamoring for the opportunity to host a Hobbit premiere in their neck of the wood and that would be: ITALY!
Viva Italia! Are you listening Warner Bros? I think it’s a splendid idea! Andiamo! Andiamo!
Like bidding the IOC for the next Olympic Games…this amazingly dedicated group of Hobbit fans, led by fearless leader Alessia Catto of Turin, Italy have raised a campaign that is starting to generate some attention. Let’s just hope it’s not too late! Strike that…let’s MAKE it not too late!
The Hobbit In Italy group has launched a campaign which includes a Change.org petition that makes a plea not only to Peter Jackson and Warner Bros (US and Italy!) but the Mayor of Rome Iganzio Marino himself! Also addressed in the petition are: Weta Digital and the Minister of Heritage and Cultural Activities and Tourism Dario Franceschini! Oh Mio Dio! That’s a pretty impressive target list. Hmm, I wonder if The Pope is a Hobbit fan?
Their Change.Org pitch states that there has never been a premiere in Italy for either the Lord of The Rings films nor any of The Hobbit films despite there being an abundance of Italian Tolkien and Peter Jackson fans, ALL of whom would love the opportunity to host the cast of the Hobbit in one of their lovely cities. (And by “host”, you know that means being invited to every single Italian home in the country and being stuffed with the best homemade pasta and wine known to man. Seems like a no-brainer to me.)
Additionally Hobbit In Italy have taken out a Facebook page and Twitter account using the hashtag #HobbitInItaly in all their posts and manning each social media account around the clock. They’re nothing if not persistent.
I must admit it has been quite infectious and the more I think about it the more I believe Italy would be a PERFECT location for at least ONE of the final Hobbit premieres…and not just because I want to jump on a plane to Venezia or Napoli, which I do…but, here are my “Top Ten Reasons Why” I think this is a great idea!
Top Ten Reasons Why There Should Be A Hobbit Premiere In Italy
1. OK, Let’s just get this one out of the way right off the bat: I’d pay anything to see Thorin aka Richard Armitage manning a gondola in Venice. We already know he drives a mean barrel. And yeah, I know there’s the “water thing”…but he’s already proven that he can rise above it. And, between you and I…I actually think he actually likes it.
2. J.R. Tolkien was actually mesmerized by Italy after a trip he took there, describing Venice in particular as “the ancient Pelargir at the time of Numenor, full of ships from the countenance Shadow Elvish because it had not yet fallen on the Men of Westernesse. Assisi , the place in Italy which caused more commotion in the Professor, had become Lossarnach , the “district of flowers”, the hilly region and the south of Florida fruit Minas Tirith and the White Mountains, kissed by the sea wind. After this trip Tolkien became accustomed to speak of Italy by the name of Gondor.” (Translated from Tolkien Italian Network)
Como e’ bella ce’ la luna brille e’ strette / Strette como e’ tutta bella a passeggiare / Sotto il cielo di Roma….
3. Ahh, Roma! The Colosseum, Trevi Fountain, The Vatican and more! What’s not to love about Rome. The cast can arrive on Vespas just like Gregory Peck and Audrey Hepburn in “Roman Holiday”. Plus, maybe the Pope’s blessing will lead the film to Oscar gold!
4. The cast party can be held in the Sistine Chapel thanks to Pope Francis‘s recent decision to rent out the room where Michelangelo spent four years of his life, on his back painting one of the greatest masterpieces known to man…for an unprecedented private corporate event! To be fair…it was for charity. It’s not like the Alpha Chi sorority can book the room for their pledge party. But still…food for thought, Warner Bros? I’ve been in that room many times…I know exactly where to place the bar and photo booth.
5. Milan is considered one of the fashion capitals of the world…and a perfect place for our fabulous stars, Cate Blanchett and Evangeline Lilly to order their red carpet gowns. Somebody ring Valentino! Both actresses have worn the Italian designer’s creations to much success on the red carpet, and in Cate’s case it even brought her luck at the Oscars!
6. The capitol city of the Italian region of Tuscany…which means wine flows like water from the river there! Florence is known for its history and is the birthplace of the Renaissance. The Accademia di Belle Arti di Firenze is home to some of the world’s most beautiful sculptures, including the David by Michelangelo. Art students still try to recreate the masterpiece using live subjects today…so, if any of the Dwarves of Erebor are game. Personally, I’d nominate Aidan Turner since he’s familiar with the genre (and level of undress needed) having starred as artist Dante Gabriel Rossetti, in “Desperate Romantics”, so he’ll feel right at home.
And Pisa is just an hour away so the cast can take turns taking the typical touristy shot of holding up the Leaning Tower of Pisa! Maybe a dwarf group shot?
7. OK, now I’m just dreaming as I just love this part of Southern Italy and I KNOW not only the Hobbit cast will love it, but so will all the Warner Bros execs that get to jet-set around the world to these events. From Naples and their amazing cuisine and world class opera houses, to the ruins of Pompeii and the boat ride to Sorrento. The possibilities are endless.
8. Italians are known for their hospitality and being the friendliest people ever! In all my travels I’ve never met people more welcoming and willing to help with directions….and wanting to cook for you! Mangia! The Hobbit cast will never go hungry in Italy! And, with plenty of Michelin-star rated restaurants to choose from…the cast will be in ‘foodie’ heaven!
They’re Gonna Make You An Offer You Can’t Refuse….
(Cue Godfather music…)
9. Ok, I’m gonna go to the mattresses on this one. I love Sicily, especially Taormina which, at one time, was a haven for British expat artists, writers and intellectuals, with the likes of D.H. Lawrence and Evelyn Waugh finding the atmosphere conducive to creativity. Imagine the final Hobbit premiere being staged at the Teatro Greco built in the 7th century. The perfect theatrical backdrop for Peter Jackson to address his audience.
10. It’s Italy…They’re going to make you an offer you can’t refuse. ’nuff said! Take a look:
I applaud their dedication and tireless efforts as I know it’s coming from their hearts. I truly hope the Hobbit In Italy group will have their dreams realized and Warner Bros will catch wind of this amazing campaign and think about sending our merry band of Hobbits, Elves and Dwarves to Italia! And if it happens, The Anglophile Channel will be right behind covering this amazing event! I wouldn’t miss it for the world.
Buona Fortuna Hobbit In Italy and Alessia Catto!
Check out #HobbitInItaly’s campaign on Change.Org at: http://www.change.org/p/peter-jackson-we-want-a-premiere-of-the-hobbit-the-battle-of-the-five-armies-in-italy
“Like” them on Facebook at: https://www.facebook.com/PremiereBOFAItaly?fref=ts
And FOLLOW them on Twitter: https://twitter.com/HobbitInItaly
Lady Anglophile…passport at the ready for The #HobbitInItaly! Andiamo! Andiamo!