The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring
Quicklinks
Top Links
trailers and videosfull cast and crewtriviaofficial sitesmemorable quotes
Overview
main detailscombined detailsfull cast and crewcompany credits
Awards & Reviews
user reviewsexternal reviewsawardsuser ratingsparents guidemessage board
Plot & Quotes
plot summarysynopsisplot keywordsmemorable quotes
Did You Know?
triviagoofssoundtrack listingcrazy creditsalternate versionsmovie connectionsFAQ
Other Info
box office/businessrelease datesfilming locationstechnical specsliterature listingsNewsDesk
Promotional
taglines trailers and videos posters photo gallery
External Links
showtimesofficial sitesmiscellaneousphotographssound clipsvideo clips
The content of this page was created directly by users and has not been screened or verified by IMDb staff.
Visit our FAQ Help to learn more

FAQ Contents


A Note Regarding Spoilers

The following FAQ entries may contain spoilers. Only the biggest ones (if any) will be covered with spoiler tags. Spoiler tags are used sparingly in order to make the page more readable.

For detailed information about the amounts and types of (a) sex and nudity, (b) violence and gore, (c) profanity, (d) alcohol, drugs, and smoking, and (e) frightening and intense scenes in this movie, consult the IMDb Parents Guide for this movie. The Parents Guide for Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring can be found here.

Aided by wizard Gandalf the Grey (Ian McKellen) and a mysterious man named Strider, also known as Aragorn, (Viggo Mortensen), young Hobbit Frodo Baggins (Elijah Wood) and his three friends -- Samwise 'Sam' Gamgee (Sean Astin), Peregrin 'Pippin' Took (Billy Boyd), and Meriadoc 'Merry' Brandybuck (Dominic Monaghan) -- set out to carry an ancient evil ring to the Elven kingdom of Rivendell, where they are joined by Elf Legolas Greenleaf (Orlando Bloom), Dwarf Gimli (John Rhys-Davies), and human Boromir (Sean Bean), forming a fellowship pledged to destroy the ring by tossing it into the fires of Mount Doom to prevent it falling into the hands of its maker, Sauron, who would cover the world of Middle Earth in darkness and war.

Yes. The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring was based on the first book of The Lord of the Rings trilogy, written by the English academic and author J.R.R. Tolkien [1892-1973]. The other two books in the series (both movie and novel) are: (2) The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers and (3) The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King. The novels were adapted for the movie by New Zealand screenwriter Philippa Boyens, director Peter Jackson, and Jackson's wife, screenwriter Fran Walsh.

It is Galadriel (Cate Blanchett) who narrates the prologue. It was originally going to be Frodo, but it was felt that this would give too much of the story away (i.e. that Frodo makes it through his perilous journey with the ring). There was also one version with Gandalf, but that would have resulted in similar problems involving giving away later events. In the end, Galadriel was chosen due to her ageless quality and her all-knowing actions in the film.

Sauron (Sala Baker) directly made only one of the 20 rings, the famed "one ring to rule them all," although he assisted in the creation of the nine rings for mortal men and the seven rings for the dwarves. The three rings for the elven-kings were forged alone by Celebrimbor, with knowledge obtained from Sauron. "Three Rings for the Elven-kings under the sky, Seven for the Dwarf-lords in their halls of stone, Nine for Mortal Men doomed to die, One for the Dark Lord on his dark throne, In the land of Mordor where the shadows lie. One Ring to rule them all, One Ring to find them, One Ring to bring them all, and in the darkness bind them, In the land of Mordor where the shadows lie."

The nine kings who were given the Nine Rings of Mortal Men were gradually suborned by them, fading into the shadow world and becoming the Black Riders, or Nazgul (also called Ring Wraiths). They do not appear to wear the Rings any more; reference is made to them being in Sauron's possession and no attempt is made to retrieve the Witch-King's Ring after his death. Galadriel, Elrond (Hugo Weaving) and Gandalf each possess one of the Three Rings of the Elves. Gandalf got the Ring of Fire, Narya, from Crdan, an Elven lord who lives in the Grey Havens. Crdan in turn received it from Gil-galad. The Ring of Air, Vilya, was originally given to Gil-galad, who later gave it to Elrond. Galadriel possessed the Ring of Adamant, Nenya. They weren't enslaved by Sauron because he wasn't directly involved in their creation; in addition, they stopped using their Rings when they realized Sauron was evil and kept them hidden so he couldn't find them. Seven Rings were given to the Dwarves. They would have become corrupted by Sauron, but they ended up being too stubborn, and Sauron couldn't take control of them. He managed to acquire three of the Seven Dwarven Rings through war, trickery and theft, and the other four were consumed by dragonfire. It is said that, although Sauron couldn't bend the dwarves to his will, he was able to make them greedier and prone to bad decisions (such as trying to resettle Moria).

Sauron is a Maia, who were created as powerful servants for the Valar, the "gods" who live in Valinor, the famous West all the characters talk about. He used to be the sidekick of Melkor (Morgoth), the banished Vala, sort of a Middle-earth equivalent of Lucifer/Satan, the most powerful angel turned to evil. After Morgoth was defeated, Sauron assumed power as a lesser Dark Lord. Interesting to note that Gandalf, and the other Istari (wizards), are also Maiar and so were the Balrogs. See The Silmarillion (1977) for further information.

There are degrees of innate power among the Maiar. Some are inherently much more powerful than others. Gandalf's strength was primarily that of wisdom rather than of brute force. Also, Gandalf, Saruman, and the other wizards were bound to their mortal form to prevent them from using their full strength to intervene in the affairs of Middle Earth. Gandalf had to be sent back with more power after his body was destroyed in his fight with the balrog. Sauron took many centuries to acquire his power through corrupt influence.

Are hobbits human?

Not really. Tolkien described them as "relatives" of the race of Men. Elsewhere he describes them as a "variety" or separate "branch" of humans. The main differences are that hobbits are much shorter (typically a little over a metre / 3'6" in height); do not grow facial hair; live longer (they only "come of age" at 33 and have a life expectancy of around 100), and their feet are covered in fur and have hard leathery soles (so they do not need shoes).

He doesn't get his staff back. The staff he has after leaving Isengard is a different staff from the one he had at the beginning of the movie. The two staves are shown in the Fellowship of the Ring Appendices 1 Design Galleries section. It's also very possible that Gandalf had other staves hidden around Middle Earth in case any were lost or damaged beyond use. He reacquires the new staff around the time he meets the hobbits in Rivendell so it's quite likely that he'd stored one there.

In addition to Elrond, Gandalf, Frodo, Gimli, Legolas, Aragorn, and Boromir the film shows dwarves, elves, and men. The dwarves included Glin, Gimli's father. The elves were probably high-ranking elves who lived in Rivendell, Lorien, and the Grey Havens. And the men were supposed to be traders and merchants from Lake-town and Dale. The Council in the film differs from that of the book. By the Book: Aragorn, Bilbo Baggins, Boromir, Elrond Half-elven, Erestor and other counsellors of Elrond, Frodo Baggins, Galdor of the Havens, Gandalf, Gimli, Glin, Glorfindel, and Legolas. See here for information on Council members from the trading cards.

He realised how evil the Ring really was and how much Sauron wanted it. Then looking at the Council arguing he knew that he was the only person who could take the ring to Mount Doom and destroy it. The Council would never trust anyone else, and he was the only person who was not in a position to 'use' the Ring. He realized that he was fated to be Ring-bearer. Frodo was a virtuous individual and possessed an inner strength recognized by both Elrond and Gandalf, making him the perfect ring-bearer. Frodo knows, possibly before entering upon the quest, that it will mean his "doom", if not actual death, then the loss of the life he knows and loves. Galadriel, queen of the people of Lothlrien and keeper of one of the three Elven Rings, foresees this. Elrond (another ring-bearer) may also see it but is not as compassionate as Galadriel. He talks Gandalf into letting Frodo bear the One Ring to Mount Doom, since men cannot be trusted. It also makes for a great tale of tragedy in the span of LOTR because Frodo IS gradually affected by the Ring's power.

Frodo's journey was about 1800 miles (about 2990 kilometres).

In the novel, Boromir did receive a golden belt from Galadriel but, in both novel and film, he died soon after the company left Lothlorien. Peter Jackson apparently chose to focus the screen-time in this scene on the giving of those gifts that had a part to play later in the story (or, in Gimli's case, showed something about the character).

Yes. Galadriel is Arwen's grandmother. Arwen's father Elrond married Galadriel's daughter. Arwen seems to have split her time (thousands of years!) before meeting Aragorn, between her father's home in Rivendell and her grandmother's home in the forest of Lothlrien. Though she and Aragorn met in Rivendell, they "plight their troth" (get engaged) on a hill known as Cerin Amroth in Lothlrien. This is where Arwen goes after Aragorn's death, as predicted by her father, unwilling to face mortality yet. Finally, she lies down on the hill and dies and, presumably, enters the same afterlife as does Aragorn. This part is told in one of the Appendices.

Gimli didn't know the password to the door because that knowledge was lost. It was too long ago when dwarves had lived there. Elves built the door, back when they were friends with the Dwarves, thousands of years beforehand. But, nobody used the password much, because the doors were always open in friendlier times.

The Mines of Moria had been abandoned by the dwarves centuries before and were occupied by Orcs and other foul things. Balin and a contingent of dwarves tried to establish a colony there but were never heard from again (after a short period of correspondence with their home land). Nonetheless, Gimli assumed Balin would be there with a successful colony to "give them a royal welcome". Because dwarves in Tolkien's world live very long (as much as 250 years), visits to see their kin, which are common among humans in our age, weren't as frequent. It may have been dozens or hundreds of years since Gimli had last seen his cousin and, in the intervening time, Moria was attacked and abandoned.

It was likely independent of Sauron. The Balrog was a being of the same order as Gandalf, Saruman and Sauron. If Sauron were to go to Moria the Balrog would probably recognize him. Sauron in the First Age was the #1 Lieutenant of the first Dark Lord Morgoth and as such was of a higher rank than the Balrogs. Whether the Balrog would have followed orders from Sauron in the Third Age is debatable, since his allegiance was to the first Dark Lord Morgoth.

You cannot pass! I am a servant of the Secret Fire (In Tolkien's legendarium, the Secret Fire is the life-giving power imparted to the world by Eru / Ilvatar, the creator God), wielder of the Flame of Anor. (Anor is the Sindarin, an Elvish language, term for the Sun. The dark fire will not avail you, Flame of Udn! (Udn or Utumno is the fortress of Melkor/Morgoth, an evil deity in Tolkien's works.) Go back to the Shadow. (Sauron himself, and the power of darkness he commands, is often referred to as the Shadow.) You shall not pass! (Gandalf is telling the Balrog he is forbidden to cross the bridge.)

He says, "Fly, you fools!" Turning on the closed captions or subtitles reveals the line, which is also in the book. In older English, "fly" is an imperative version of the word "flee". During the original theatrical release, Gandalf's line was modernized to "Run, you fools!" However, when the DVD was released, the line was changed to more faithfully reflect the novel.

The Council of Elrond decided that secrecy and stealth were the only viable means of getting into Mordor. A large eagle in the skies would have been quickly spotted by Sauron and intercepted. In addition, the Eagles are an intelligent, independent race who cannot simply be summoned like beasts of burden, but who rather make their own decisions. Ultimately, they do decide to enter the war. There is also a matter of the eagles possibly being corrupted during the trip and that they would have simply delivered the ring to Sauron. Finally, there are certain areas of Middle Earth the eagles won't fly over, due to hunters' arrows.

Yes. Orcs breed in the manner of Elves and Men, according to The Silmarillion, so there must be female Orcs even though they are either not shown in the story or are indistinguishable from males.

The ring does prolong life but ringbearers do age. The rate of their aging appears to be dependent upon the amount of time they are in possession of the ring and the amount of "harm" they do when using it. Bilbo used the ring to hide and doesn't seem to have used it all that often in the comparatively short number of years that he had it. Frodo didn't use the ring at all until he started his journey. By comparison, Smagol/Gollum was in possession of the ring for some 500 years and used it to kill Orcs. Consequently, the ring had a greater effect on him than on Bilbo.

Bilbo does age much more rapidly after giving up the Ring, however. Though there is a time difference between the book and the film as to when he and Frodo meet again at Rivendell, it is clearly pointed out that Bilbo's advanced age has caught up with him, as is true in the book. At one point, (in both the book and film), when Frodo is visiting with Bilbo in his rooms, the latter asks to see the Ring again and Frodo refuses out of a sense of fear, or possibly even possessiveness. Bilbo suddenly snarls and reaches for the Ring, looking just like Gollum for a second. This pains Bilbo greatly and he apologizes for "everything", but also alerts Frodo visually to what might happen to him if he uses the Ring. Even though everyone keeps saying how "resilient" Hobbits are to the Ring's corrupting force, they are certainly not immune to it!

The War of the Ring was about 6000 years ago and, according to Tolkien's mythos, the geography of Europe was different than we know it today.

Hobbiton (home of Frodo Baggins): Oxford, England

Bree: Rotterdam, Netherlands

Weathertop: Eastern Netherlands

Rivendell (Elrond's realm): Berlin, Germany

Gollum's Cave: Western Poland

Erebor (Lonely Mountain, Smaug's ruin and the Battle of Five Armies): Lithuania

Dol Guldur (The Necromancer's fortress in southern Mirkwood): Budapest, Hungary

Gladden Fields (Where Isildur lost the Ring and Deagol found it again): Wroclaw, Poland area

Lorien (Galadriel's realm): Northern Austria

Fangorn (Treebeard and the Ents): SW Austria, NE Italy, Slovenia

Moria Gate: Just West of Prague, Czech Republic

Isengard (Saruman's fortress): Just East of Milan, Italy

Helms Deep: Pesaro, Italy (coastal town on Adriatic Sea)

Edoras (capital of Rohan): submerged under Adriatic Sea

Minas Tirith (capital of Gondor): Sofia, Bulgaria

Mount Doom: Eastern Bulgaria

Barad-dur (Sauron's fortress): NorthEastern Bulgaria/SouthEastern Romania

No. "Gollum" was meant to mimic the nasty gagging-swallowing sound Smeagol began making after he got the ring.

In the Foreword to later editions of the book, Tolkien was clear that pipeweed was "some form of nicotiana" (tobacco). This was in reaction to the speculation among fans in the 1960s that it might be marijuana.

Yes, there is a 17 year timeline difference between the dates given in the film and the book. In the film, Bilbo's birthday party is one year before it happens in the book (TA 3000 instead of 3001). And Frodo leaves on his quest one year after Bilbo's party in the film, whereas it is 17 years later when he does so in the book. Thus, Frodo's age is considerably younger in the film version.

The following timeline lists events as calculated for the film (vs. the book).

Years are given as Third Age (TA).

87 Birth of Legolas (Tolkien never specified the age of Legolas).

2889 Birth of Bilbo Baggins.

2913 Birth of Denethor II in Minas Tirith.

2914 Aragorn son of Arathorn II and Gilraen is born on March 1st.

2916 Arathorn II slain. Gilraen takes Aragorn to Imladris (Rivendell). Elrond raises him as foster-son and gives him the name Estel (Hope). Aragorn's ancestry is concealed.

2931 Theodin son of Thengel, King of Rohan, is born.

2934 Aragorn turns twenty. He mets Arwen for the first time in the woods outside Rivendell. Elrond reveals to him his lineage. Aragorn goes off into the Wild.

2937 Mount Doom bursts into flame again.

2939 Aragorn meets Gandalf the Grey and their friendship begins.

2940 Thorin Oakenshield and Gandalf visit Bilbo in the Shire. Bilbo finds the One Ring. The White Council meets; Saruman agrees to an attack on Dol Guldur in Southern Mirkwood. The Necromancer abandons Dol Guldur for Mordor. Aragorn begins the period of his great journeys and errantries.

2941 Bilbo returns to the Shire with the One Ring.

2948 Gandalf and Balin visit Bilbo in the Shire.

2950 Sauron declares himself openly in Mordor.

2952 Last meeting of the White Council. Saruman claims that the One Ring has passed down the Anduin to the Sea.

2959 Denethor weds Finduilas of Dol Amroth.

2961 Birth of Boromir son of Denethor II.

2962 or 2963 Samwise Gamgee is born on April 6th.

2963 Aragorn enters Lothlorien and is reunited with Arwen. Theoden becomes King of Rohan.

2964 or 2965 Meriadoc Brandybuck is born.

2966 Birth of Faramir son of Denethor.

2967 Frodo Baggins is born to Drogo and Primula Baggins on September 22nd. Death of Ecthelion II. Denethor II becomes Steward of Gondor.

2972 or 2973 Peregrin Took is born.

2974 Eomer Eomund's son born in Rohan.

2978 Eowyn sister of Eomer born.

2979 Frodo is orphaned by the deaths of his parents and is invited to live in Bag End by Bilbo.

2988 Balin leaves Erebor and enters Moria.

2993 Balin perishes and the Dwarf-colony is destroyed.

2999 Saruman uses the palantir of Orthanc and is ensnared by Sauron who has the Ithil Stone.

3000 Bilbo celebrates his 111th birthday on September 22nd. Gandalf begins researching Bilbo's Ring.

3001 Bilbo becomes a guest of Elrond and settles in Rivendell. Gandalf returns to Hobbiton. Frodo takes the Ring from the Shire in late summer or early fall accompanied by Samwise, Merry and Pippin. The Fellowship sets out from Rivendell near year's end.

The Dead Marshes is the ancient battlefield of the Battle of Dagorlad between the Last Alliance and the forces of Mordor, where many of the fallen were laid to rest. Over time, the battlefield became marshes, which swallowed up the dead, though their bodies could still be seen floating in the water.

Not according to the book. There was a third Wizard (or Istari) called Radagast the Brown,who was also--theoretically--a member of the White Council, as well as two other "Blue Wizards" (the Ithryn Luin) who went into the East and never returned. According to Tolkien's Unfinished Tales, the names of the two "Blue Wizards" were Alatar and Pallando. According to the essay "The Peoples of Middle-earth" in The History of Middle-earth, Tolkien later changed the names of the Blue Wizards to Morinehtar and Romestamo; the essay also provides a different perspective on their mission in Middle-earth.

Where is Elrond's wife?

After she was brutally attacked by Orcs, Elrond's wife Celebrian, sailed over the Sea five centuries before the events in this movie.

No, that is not in the book. At one time, however, Tolkien wrote that the Orcs came from the earth (as seen in the movie)...but he later disliked this idea and did not include it in his final published works. In the books, the true Uruk-hai were actually bred by Sauron, to act as elite troops and commanders of the lesser Orcs. Saruman's hybrids of Orcs and Men were referred to as half-orcs; they are described as "sallow-faced and squint-eyed." In the movie, Saruman explains to the Uruk-hai how orcs came to be, that they were ruined Elves, captured and tortured by Sauron. In the Silmarillion, however, it is stated that it was Morgoth, the first Dark Lord who did this. Jackson & his co-writers, Fran Walsh (his wife) and Philippa Boyens, simply took a bit of literary license & created the scene for dramatic effect.

Gandalf and Elrond, and others, come from a different place and, in a sense, a different time. They're meant to speak differently. As for some of the other characters, in the days before mass communication, regional accents varied more. The film glosses over class differences which would be readily understood, e.g., Bilbo and Frodo are of a different social class than Sam. In many places today, your "gardener" (or landscaper) would speak as you do and probably send his kids to the same school. In Tolkien's world this would not have been the case. Merry and Pippin are actually in Frodo's social class but they either picked up or affected more "countryish" accents.

Yes and no: it was in the theatrical version of the movie (when Frodo and Sam (Sean Astin) are walking through the corn fields) but it was deleted in the DVD and VHS editions. While Sam and Frodo are walking in the cornfields right before they meet Merry and Pippin there is a long shot with dust coming from a back road behind them. This is the scene of controversy and, in his commentary, Peter Jackson points out several flaws, but still claims he cannot see this one. The dust plume can be seen in the National Geographic special about the movies. Although it has been suggested the dust rising is merely smoke coming from the chimney of a hobbit-hole in the background, the source end of the dust plume moves across the landscape, suggesting that the source of the dust plume is also moving across the landscape.

Jackson has said that he purposefully left Tom Bombadil out of the film because he felt that Tom's meeting with the travelling hobbits did not advance the story, but rather held it up. It is possible to remove Bombadil from the story completely without affecting any later events. Another factor is that after trying very hard to convince the audience that the Ring corrupts everyone and is dangerous, Tom is seen to be apparently immune, reducing the threat of the Ring. However, in a small nod to Tom Bombadil, Treebeard uses Bombadil's incantation to save Merry and Pippin when they become trapped by the roots of an old tree in Fangorn Forest.

It is worth noting, however, that after the Hobbits leave Bombadil's home, they must cross a land of "downs" (grasslands with hills) that are dotted with "Barrows" or underground graves from a much earlier kingdom. Tom warns them away from these structures but they get lost in the fog. He has given them a rhyme to summon them, as if knowing they will get in trouble. A "Barrow-wight", a sort of zombie--neither living nor dead--inside the mound, captures them and is about to kill them when Sam wakes up and attacks it. They recite the rhyme and wake up later (after passing out) on the grass, naked. Tom tells them to "run about" and clear their heads while he searches for things in the barrow, To show how old he really is, he finds a woman's brooch and reminisces, "Fair was she who long ago wore this on her shoulder!", indicating some romantic relationship in the distant past.

But much more important are the Elvish blades he finds and gives to the Hobbits as swords. Merry's proves a lifesaver and a sword that turns the tide of the Battle of the Pelennor, when he attacks the Witch King of Angmar, who has disabled Eowyn. It turns out that his blade has the power to sever the "undead sinews" of the King and banish him from the world of the Living. In the film, it seems to be owyn who does this, since she is "no man", but in the book, it is Merry's blade. Both he and the shieldmaiden are sickened by their contact with the Ringwraith, not as badly as Frodo, but in the book, they are taken to the Houses of Healing inside Minas Tirith and healed by Aragorn. In the movie, they seem to have "double-teamed" him into becoming really dead, instead of just "undead".

Tolkien's Lord of the Rings is an "expansion" of works which later would be published by his son, Christopher Tolkien, under the title The Silmarillion. There is information within The Silmarillion which is not given in LOTR, thus creating some viewer confusion. Examples: where Elves come from, the age of Arwen, the difference between Elves and humans and dwarves, what type of being Sauron, the wizards and the Balrog are, etc.

For its DVD and blu-ray release, extended versions of all three Lord of the Rings movies have been released. or The Fellowship of the Ring, the extended version takes more time for exposition and characterization, especially considering the character of Aragorn. The Fellowship's stopover at Lothlorien is virtually doubled in length, and includes the entire gift-giving scene. Also, there are some scenes in the extended version which resonate with events from film two, The Two Towers: for example, the scene where Gandalf mentions Gollum's real name. Last but not least, Peter Jackson reinstated some violent scenes. A detailed comparison, divided into two parts and with pictures, can be found here (Part One) and here (Part Two).

Page last updated by bj_kuehl, 2 weeks ago
Top 5 Contributors: Dunharrow, kingwalker, bj_kuehl, Benjamoose, magpie930

r73731


Related Links

Plot summary Plot synopsis Parents Guide
Trivia Quotes Goofs
Soundtrack listing Crazy credits Alternate versions
Movie connections User reviews Main details