‘The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies’ to End With a 45-Minute Battle, and Here’s the Diagram to Prove It
Warner Bros. continues to tout 'The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies' as the defining chapter of the middle earth saga, and the most epic installment yet. How epic? Well, it apparently culminates with a 45-minute battle sequence featuring dwarves and orcs and elves and all their various weapons and such. It's a big ol' middle earth war party, and Peter Jackson has the diagram to prove it.
In an interview with Entertainment Weekly, Peter Jackson discussed his detailed plans for the final chapter of 'The Hobbit,' which features a 45-minute battle scene during the climax of the film. It was very complicated stuff:
"There’s a lot of logistics that have to be thought through," says Jackson. "We have dwarves and men and elves and orcs, all with different cultures, with different weapons, and different shields and patterns and tactics."
The mega-melee takes place at the foot of the Lonely Mountain as various armies vie for the newly reacquired dwarven treasure of Erebor. Like so much in Jackson’s Middle-earth, it represents filmmaking on the largest possible scale. "Before we could loose the first arrow, we had to design the landscape itself and figure out, 'Okay, if we have 10,000 orcs, how much room are they going to take up?'" Jackson says. "'Are they going to fill up the valley or look like a speck?' Then we could start drawing the arrows on the schematics."
But Jackson also realizes that all those shots of swarms of fictional creatures who aren't, like famous underneath the make-up and elf ears and beards might be kind of boring after a while:
We have a rule that we’re not allowed to go more than two or three shots of anonymous people fighting without cutting back to our principal characters,' he says. 'Otherwise the audience just ends up with battle fatigue.'
Jackson also revealed his diagram for the climactic battle sequence to EW, and it looks like something you might have drawn in high school:
At any rate, you can see how that diagram translated to film when the movie hits theaters on December 17. (Honestly, we hope the pink arrows made it in.)