The Hobbit:DOS Promotion – So Far, So Good for Thorin Oakenshield

First Publicized Photo of TH:AUJ cast. Source: NZ Dominion:Stuff

First Publicized Photo of TH:AUJ cast.
Source: NZ Dominion:Stuff

Will Richard Armitage move to the back during DOS promotion?

As British TV detectives say once in every episode, “[i]t’s early says yet,” and so it is for the latest Hobbit film promotion. Despite voiced concern that fans may see less of Richard Armitage than some other cast members during the promotion period, the early signs don’t read that way to Perry.

Granted, I’m a  fan and blogger who probably knows the least about The Hobbit than most others, and that includes the doings surrounding the first promotion for AUJ, more of which was learned about from Katharine D’s detailed chronology and analysis in Promoting Thorin   on Me and Richard, but so far, it appears to me that if Thorin isn’t front and center,  he’s side by side with other characters.

First, there’s the newest trailer in theaters and TV.  In the two and a half minute length, Richard Armitage as Thorin is seen and heard just about one minute in total, possibly more – and more frequently than any other character.  He’s seen speaking with Thranduil, Dwalin, Balin, Bilbo and Bard, all in separate snippets. There are a number of additional action shots, including the spectacular leap out of the mountain and away from Smaug’s flames.  Then there’s the beauty shot,

Source: RANet.com

Source: RANet.com

So, the trailer, which is what millions will be seeing in their local theaters and on TV between now and opening, places Thorin at the center of the story -OK- along with Bilbo.

Richard Armitage has been interviewed for 5 publications that we know of so far. We don’t know what representatives of other publications were at at the same interviews if these were part of a press junket, and this doesn’t include interviews that haven’t been publicized. Some of the same interviewers spoke to Orlando Bloom, Lee Pace and Evie Lilly. (These included the interviews by @LeenaNZ).

In London, we know Richard was interviewed by Clickonline and probably other outlets during a press junket. Stephen Fry and Lee Pace were interviewed around the same time.  No doubt, interviews are continuing of all cast- but what we know is that Richard Armitage is in the mix.

In addition, promos for the trailer were filmed by all major cast members ( I haven’t found one for Evie Lilly). Lee Pace and Luke Evans filmed together, as did Orlando Bloom and Ian McKellen.  Armitage, Freeman and Fry filmed solo.

There’s also some indication from a vague tweet over the summer that Richard Armitage might have an Esquire UK fashion shoot or interview spread coming out.  It probably won’t be in the November issue, which will feature Idris Elba on the cover.  But December or January makes even more sense if it’s to be tied to  The Hobbit promotion.

The New York Moves Magazine interview is scheduled for the mag’s Power Issue,This is billed as as MM -Lifestyle for City Men, and previous issues featured Christoph Waltz and Ethan Hawke on the covers. ( On the down side,  the feature on Richard Armitage may not  highlight The Hobbit, on the upside, it tags him as a New Yorker at least for now, and may be timely for announcing what was hinted at – a new project or two.) I’ll take that over saturated DOS promotion any day.

Therefore, as promotion ramps up slowly for the release of the film, so far it looks as though Thorin is getting  at least equal exposure to other characters.

Will things change in the days ahead? I can’t know, but I think in the same way that Gandalf and Legolas have their  fans who want to hear from them again and again, Thorin does also. And I think Peter Jackson knows it, which is why he was so prominently featured in the most widely viewed trailer.

And, of course, once the film opens, a lot may depend on how well his performance was received by fans and critics alike.

Anyway, what fan, after reading what Katharine D. recounted about the brutal schedule Richard Armitage endured last year, wouldn’t want it to go a little easier for him this year?

15 thoughts on “The Hobbit:DOS Promotion – So Far, So Good for Thorin Oakenshield

  1. I really hope you are right and we will be flooded with interview by RA. I’m ready 🙂 And I sincerely hope his performance will be great and well received, that’s the main thing. I fear the moment when Thorin will start losing his mind but I’m also eager to see how well RA was able to portray these changes in Thorin behavior.

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  2. I think we’ll have a little bit of RAin, but I think this time around the focus will be on the elves, which doesn’t mean they won’t rely on the interest in dwarves from the last one. Either way, we should all prepare for a promotional whirlwind, Richard included 😉

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    • I don’t know completely how these things work. I imagine that who will be interviewed most by which publication or news outlet will depend on who producers of shows or editors ask film PR people to produce,and then some negotiation goes on. But yes, I agree, for us there’ll be plenty of RA.

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  3. There are some seriously great snips of Thorin in the trailers, I agree. There’s so much going on in DoS that doesn’t involve Thorin, though, that I think they will have to feature the other actors. There’s the elves, Bard in Laketown with his family, to say nothing of Bilbo and Smaug! Then Gandalf and the Necromancer. I also must say I was quite surprised at the TORn panel at NYCC at all the Legolas love. It was overwhelming. Hardly any attention paid to anyone else. Luke Evans drummed up some excitement. Nothing for Thorin. Not that that’s a particularly great indicator of anything other than the crowd in that room at that moment! Also, Orlando is doing a lot of publicity for Romeo right now in NYC. Looks like Legolas and Tauriel show up to help with the spiders, so they look to be a big part of the movie. Any RA is good to me and I’m grateful for anything we get!

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    • I’m not surprised that the TORn panel was gaga over Legolas since he played a big role in LOtR. It sounds like the panel did a disservice to the film by focusing on Legolas. They also went over their frame by frame hypothesis of what they gleaned from the trailers, which also appears on their website.
      I fully expect Thranduil/Lee Pace will generate a lot of interest and interviews – but there are two good ways for that to happen: one is to group him with Legolas and Tauriel – the elves, and the other is to interview him in counterpoint to Thorin. Also, if I were promoting the film I would be interested in making sure that the spokespeople will do a good job. I saw an interview Orlando Bloom did for Romeo and Juliet that was abysmal.

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      • LOL! I am no Orlando Bloom fan!! I never saw the excitement. I like actors who can actually..um…act. There really are good actors who can do publicity for DoS – Lee Pace, Evangeline Lilly, Stephen Fry, Ian McKellan, Luke Evans, Benedict Cumberbatch! And of course, Martin Freeman. I hope Martin and Richard do more interviews together! They are such a great team!

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  4. I definitely don’t think Richard will be left out, but I’d be surprised if he got the same attention as last time around- interviewers would really have to do their homework on the plot of DOS to come up with a different set of questions to last time.

    I’d like to see him get due respect and focus as a major member of the cast, without the grind of 56 video interviews! How about, all the major premieres and press conferences, with a few one on one interviews for major outlets like Empire.

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    • That’s right, we don’t’ want our man to burn out. I notice no one has raised the possibility of the Cumberbatch joining the interview circuit? Or is he not important enough as he only contributed his voice for Smaug?

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      • I’m sure he’s considered important enough in terms of his value as a promoter for the movie, but he’s pretty busy- IMDB has him listed as having 3 projects filming at present. It’ll be interesting to see if he does get roped in at some point. All the Sherlock fans will be looking for Martin+Benedict photo opportunities I’m sure, in London, if nothing else.

        BTW- thanks for the article mention, Perry.

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  5. For quite some time I’ve been following your site with great interest and pleasure. Kudos to you, Perry, and all the other regular posters. Very interesting and great fun.

    Re promotion: I’m absolutely sure that Cumberbatch will play a major role in the upcoming promotion. I mean, WB would be really stupid to miss out on such an opportunity.

    Apologies for my rather poor English. Yet I’m convinced you’ll be able to figure out what I’m trying to say….

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    • Welcome Giulietta,so glad you enjoy my blog. This is only guess work about Cumberbatch – I think the fans,and therefore the media outlets, will want to see as much of him as possible – so WB would want to get him out there – on the other hand, he has a rigorous work schedule. But for the time just before and just after the opening, I would guess he’ll be seen. And the world premiere is in LA , so it’s a little easier than getting to NZ.
      Your English – you’re kidding, right. It’s flawless so far.

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  6. Someone raised a question in the strand on KatharineD’s post on my blog that I’ve been pondering myself, which was whether the intensive / heavy participation that Armitage did on AUJ was written into his contract — I’m specifically phrasing that question to myself as, “was it written into his contract that the publicity machine would guarantee to get him especially heavy media exposure”? Yes, the film needed to sell him as one of the leads, but at the same time, a smart agent would probably have tried to negotiate an obligation ot make sure he was seen a lot. Publicity exposure for the film is something the studio wants, but I imagine that publicity exposure for Richard Armitage is something his agent wants — makes him more salable?

    As usual, asked with the caveat that this is an industry I know nothing about.

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    • A good question and one I can’t answer. Something was written into the contract to be sure. How the clause was phrased and which side made more demands, I can’t say – except that Richard Armitage had less bargaining power than the studio. I’m seeing very detailed complicated clauses with lots of contingencies since, at the time of signing, the details could not have been known – and it’s still going on and will continue for yet another film. The studio would have had some experience with LOtR.

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  7. A typical studio movie contract such as what RA signed would have contained legalese that goes: “Artist shall render a reasonable amount of publicity/promotional services for the Picture, and if requested by the Picture’s distributors, including, without limitation, in connection with press junkets and early morning and late night network talk shows in the US or elsewhere if required. All publicity will be subject to Artist’s professional availability in connection with a bona fide prior commitment.”

    It is to the studio’s best interest that the actor willingly do his duties to publicize the film – more exposure, more goodwill, more revenue – on both sides, for the studio and the actor himself.

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  8. Pingback: Richard Armitage Legenda 101: Stuff worth reading | Me + Richard Armitage

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