On a recent episode of Dax Shepard’s Armchair Expert (now that’s how you start a sentence), Lord Of The Rings star Elijah Wood revealed that one of the film’s orcs was based on a real-life one: Harvey Weinstein. Wood told Shepard that the move was a “sort of fuck you” to the convicted sex criminal.
Director Peter Jackson, who helmed the Lord Of The Rings and The Hobbit trilogy, was no fan of Weinstein. As Wood explained, Jackson initially set up Lord Of The Rings at Miramax, with Weinstein wanting one film comprised of the entirety of Tolkien’s epic. All the while, he threatened to replace Jackson with Quentin Tarantino before agreeing to make a two-part, $75-million movie that definitely would’ve sucked. Eventually, Jackson made his way over to Bob Shaye at New Line Cinema, and the rest is history.
“I think the lore is that they were coming with two, and it was Bob Shaye who said, ‘We have to do three,’ which is insane,” Wood said. “An incredible risk. Miramax thought there was no chance in hell.”
Given what we know about Weinstein, he does sound like a good candidate for orc model. Wood explained that on a recent episode of another podcast—Frodo’s making the rounds—Sean Astin said he had seen the Weinstein orc.
“It’s funny, this was recently spoken about because [Dominic Monaghan] and [Billy Boyd] have a podcast, The Friendship Onion,” Wood said. “They were talking to Sean Astin about his first memory of getting to New Zealand. He had seen these Orc masks. And one of the Orc masks — and I remember this vividly — was designed to look like Harvey Weinstein as a sort of a fuck you.”
“I think that is okay to talk about now, the guy is fucking incarcerated. Fuck him.”
The ring bearer speaks the truth.