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110 days 'til Oscar. More Lord of the Rings?

It's only eleventy days until Hollywood's High Holy Night. If you aren't familiar with "eleventy" think back to The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring (2001).

That whole Oscar winning trilogy kicks off with the celebration of Bilbo Baggins eleventy-firth birthday or 111th birthday in human years. Eleventy can refer to 110 or numbers much larger; one stops counting after awhile...

And speaking of the end of counting, Amazon has spent nearly $250 million for the rights to The Lord of the Rings as a TV series with a multi-season commitment up front. That's $250 before a single dime has been spent on coming up with a concept, writing a script, or hiring actors or anything. Are Amazon's coffers bottomless? Isn't this insanity with 6 lengthy movies already in the can.

Isn't it absolutely crazy that The Fellowship of the Ring and Moulin Rouge!, both of which you still hear people talk about regularly, lost the Oscar to A Beautiful Mind? What a travesty! (The other nominees were In the Bedroom and Gosford Park, both fine films though less frequently referenced). 

The first installment of Peter Jackson's game-changing trilogy won four Oscars: cinematography, score, makeup and visual effects. It basically split the tech category spoils with Baz Luhrmann's Moulin Rouge! and Ridley Scott's Black Hawk Down

What's your strongest memory of that Oscar year? How many statues do you think Middle Earth should have won that year?

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Reader Comments (27)

The idea of turning The Lord of the Rings into a TV series is absurd. "Leave things along, people!!"

As for 2001, Fellowship should have taken at least 2 more Oscars: Adapted Screenplay and Supporting Actor. I'd also argue it deserved Best Picture, although Moulin Rouge! and Gosford Park are fine choices. (Director needed to go to Lynch, hands down).

November 14, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterBVR

I also just realized as I was looking up the 2001 nominations on IMDB that Moulin Rouge! did not get nominated for Original Song. Is that like the biggest snub in that category....ever?

November 14, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterBVR

Memories of that Oscars - watching it in a hotel room with my mother in New Orleans; being very happy for a very emotional Halle Berry; being pleased a film I quite liked won foreign film (No Man's Land) and that Jim Broadbent finally won an Oscar for an excellent career and strong performance (although a Kingsley win would've worked too). My favorite nomination that year was Lynch for Mulholland Dr., but a win for him was never in the cards.

November 14, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterScottC

BVR -- i would say so especially since they declared it ineligible for such a dumb reason: it was originally written for Romeo + Juliet and Baz decided to save it for Moulin Rouge! instead so since it wasn't written for Moulin Rouge! even though it had been written for a Baz film and never been used, they said ineligible.

Scott C -- i have those same memories... well except for the hotel room in New Orleans with mom ;)

November 14, 2017 | Registered CommenterNATHANIEL R

I'm partial to both GOSFORD PARK and IN THE BEDROOM that year. Not sure I'd have even given the Visual Effects prize to FELLOWSHIP.

November 14, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterAndrew Carden

The worst nominee won best picture. How often does that happen? (The Braveheart year springs to mind.)

November 14, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterCash

I absolutely adore Fellowship of the Ring (it's easily the best of the LotR movies), but Gosford Park should have taken the gold in 2001: it was Altman at the top of his game. In the acting categories I'm partial to In the Bedroom, especially where Tom Wilkinson is concerned. Would have been such a better choice than the 'career Oscar' for Denzel. Marisa Tomei was quite brilliant in that film as well. Such an underrated gem!

November 14, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterDieter

Andrew - I too prefer both Gosford Park and In The Bedroom (in that order) to the other three.

Happy memories of Halle winning and Marisa receiving just REWARD for her talent (finally putting those nasty rumours to rest)

November 14, 2017 | Unregistered Commenterkermit_the_frog

2002 Oscars was the first entire Oscar cerimony that I've watched!!! *-*

My memories o that cerimony

Halle Berry wins.
Monsters Inc. lost;
Lynch and Altman Lost.
Cirque du Soleil.
Ian McKellen and Maggie Smith on stage.
Whoopi awesome opening!
Liza Minneli's joke.

"How many statues do you think Middle Earth should have won that year?"

Best Picture.
Best Director
Best Adapted Screenplay
Best Supporting Actor - Ian McKellen
Visual Efects
Make up
Original Song
Original Score
Best Editing

November 14, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterJon

I remember the sad shock of Naomi Watts not getting nominated for "Mulholland Drive" at the expense of Renee Zellweger, then happy shock at the inclusion of David Lynch as Best Director.

"A Beautiful Mind" really is the worst of the 5 films (and 2 lone Best Director nominees -- "Mulholland" and "Black Hawk Down").

November 14, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterParanoid Android

Will it make it to eleventy episodes?

November 14, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterT-Bone

2001 Oscar memories very actress orientated

Sissy slapping and smoking
Berry's Oscar dress
Kidman's double whammy
Connelly's terrible dress and speech
Dench,Mirren and Smith at the same award show all nominated
Tomei proving 1992 was no fluke
Zellweger before she craved an Oscar

November 14, 2017 | Unregistered Commentermarkgordonuk

Hey! I think best supporting actor Ian McKellen definitely should have won . Definitely best film has to being Won from Lord of the rings but not abest director. Because Black Hawk Down had to win the best director for Ridley Scott .

November 14, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterRiccardo Freschi

One of my favourite film years/Oscar years.

I really wanted THE OTHERS recognised. Would've nominated it far ahead of Moulin Rouge (and Kidman for Others). Fionnula Flanagan should have been nominated for supporting actress.

Gosford Park
THE Others

All are in my top films of all time list.

November 14, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterAdam Lewis

Oh why the hell not. It's a good trilogy of movies and all, but let's not act like Peter Jackson created an unimprovable version of the story. Considering it's a different medium I'm looking forward to seeing what happens.

November 14, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterSawyer

If nothing else, this ceremony gave us that wonderful moment of Lynch and Altman together after they lost Best Director. Definitely one of my favorite Oscar moments of recent times.

This was also the excellently produced post-9/11 Oscar ceremony that included Errol Morris's film of people speaking about their favorite movies. It puts to shame nearly every other video from every other Oscar telecast.

November 14, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterSuzanne

SHOULDA BEEN (given the nominees)

Picture: Moulin Rouge
Director: Robert Altman
Screenplay Original: Gosford Park
Screenplay Adapted: Lord of the Rings
Actor: Denzel Washington
Actress: Nicole Kidman
Supporting Actor: Ian McKellan
Supporting Actress: Helen Mirren*
Song: Monsters Inc**
Score: Lord of the Rings
Editing: Memento
Cinematography: Lord of the Rings
Art Direction: Moulin Rouge
Costume: Moulin Rouge
Sound: Lord of the Rings
Sound Editing: Monsters Inc
Visual Effects: Lord of the Rings
Makeup: Moulin Rouge
Animated Film: Monsters Inc

*I was actually OK with Jennifer Connelly winning (the only good thing about A Beautiful Mind) but Mirren winning here would allow Streep to win a few years later for The Devil Wears Prada

**Come What may SHOUD have been nominated and won here but given he awful nominees, Newman's first win was a memorable moment.

November 14, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterAkash

A year in which Maggie Smith chews the scenery is always a good year.

My awards (nominees/all)

Best Picture - Moulin Rouge/Moulin Rouge
Best Director - David Lynch/Baz Luhrmann
Best Actor - Denzel/Denzel
Best Actress - Kidman/Watts
BSActor - McKellen/Leguizamo
BSActress - Smith/McDormand (spectacular in The Man Who Wasn't There)

November 14, 2017 | Unregistered Commentercal roth


Mirren would still win for The Queen even if she had an Oscar for Gosford Park. The only way to beat such a juggernaut is having another juggernaut, like Theron in Monster or Streep in Sophie's Choice, or Blanchett in Blue Jasmine.

The Queen is the right mix of showy performance that looks like it's subtle, accessible but not light movie, and a instantly recognizable role. It would never lose to a comedy performance. Never.

And even without Mirren in that race, Streep wouldn't win. Maybe Winslet who was already very very overdue?

November 14, 2017 | Unregistered Commentercal roth

Ian McKellen’s date!! He brought some mysterious, smoldering arm candy. The two men held hands during the broadcast, which was a big deal in early 2002.

November 14, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterJames from Ames

4 superior films lost to a TV Movie with Movie Stars. And Connelly won for running around in a wet T shirt.

FOTF losing this year made it almost certain that ROTK was going to sweep 2 years later. Foreshadowing!

November 14, 2017 | Unregistered Commenterforever1267

This was my very first Oscar ceremony! I was only ten years old. I obviously wanted Lord of the Rings to win, haha. I remember being really concerned thinking that the best original song category was being judged based on the live performances. I was super stressed when Enya underwhelmed. Lost anyway! I was bummed for LOTR but was forever hooked on the Oscars!

November 14, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterMichael C



That was my first cerimony too! I was 13 years olf. k

Never miss an Oscar since.

November 14, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterJon

Best Picture: Not A Beautiful Mind
Best Director: Not Ron Howard or Ridley Scott
Best Adapted Screenplay: Not A Beautiful Mind or Shrek.

November 14, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterArkaan

Happy for Nicole Kidman, Halle Berry, Marisa Tomei but sad for Naomi Watts, Ewan McGregor, Ian Mckellen (should have won but Jim Broadbent had both Iris and Moulin Rouge!). Apart from The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring, Mulholland Dr., Moulin Rouge!, The Others, In the Bedroom, Gosford Park, I thought that was not a great year for movies over all and I still remember Glitter the most (How shock I was to see my favorite Mariah, with the cat, that bad but I loved the soundtrack).

November 14, 2017 | Unregistered Commenterjack

Do you wonder that, had Fellowship won more awards, that Return of the King wouldn't have swept the way it did in '03?

I remember Best Actress seeming like a 3-horse race and a genuinely exciting category. I also loved that Zellweger got in for Bridget Jones' Diary. I credit that nom for more lead actresses getting in for comedies (Keaton for Something's Gotta Give, Meryl for Prada).

November 14, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterJakey

If they had substituted ABM for any of the following: Mulholland Drive, Black Hawk Down, The Others, A.I., The Royal Tennenbaums, Amelie, Ali, hell even Legally Blonde, we might be considering this one of the strongest BP lineups of the modern era. Instead we have one of the more embarrassing choices for BP in the modern era. Barf.

November 15, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterSawyer

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