Lord of the Rings 2: “What does a tree voice sound like?”

Lord of the Rings 2: “What does a tree voice sound like?”

In addition to playing Gimli, John Rhys-Davies doubles Treebeard in The Two Towers. In 2002, he recounted this adventure in Première.

On this December 18, The Lord of the Rings – The Two Towers celebrates its 21st birthday! That’s good, the film returns this evening on TMC. Following The Fellowship of the Ring was released on this day, in 2002, and First had met some of the team at the time.

In the December issue, with Leonardo DiCaprio on the cover (for the release of Gangs of New York, by Martin Scorsese), Peter Jackson returned to the specifics of this second episode of the saga. Ian McKellen spoke about his friendship with Christopher Lee, the interpreter of Saruman, and Andy Serkis spoke of his transformation into Gollum, spectacular thanks to new digital technologies. John Rhys-Davies, the interpreter of the Dwarf Gimli in the saga, detailed how he lent his voice to the Treebeard Ent, the giant tree which crosses the path of Merry and Pippin. Here is what he told Christelle Laffin at the time.

“What does a tree voice sound like?” When Peter Jackson suggested to John Rhys-Davies (already playing the dwarf Gimli in the film) to lend his baritone range to Treebeard the Ent, the most respectable and oldest of the inhabitants of Middle-earth, the actor British man certainly asked himself one of the most incongruous questions of his life. Not discouraged however, Rhys-Davies worked to “produce a sound that rises from the roots and represents the rustling of leaves, the sound of branches clashing”. The actor still had a lot of fun trying different approaches: speaking on inspiration instead of exhalation, slowing down his delivery like a tape recorder running out of batteries, reproducing whale cries, elephant trumpets. .. The whole thing was mixed by WETA Digital to give voice to one of the most anticipated heroes of the trilogy. “We absolutely wanted to avoid the cliché of the humanoid adorned with a tuft of branches for hair which was popularized by Tolkien’s illustrators, warns Richard Taylor, the boss of WETA. At first glance, our Treebeard is a tree. It is by looking closer that we discover the face of this old man imbued with infinite intelligence and wisdom. » The five-meter animatronic doll meant to “play” with the actors on set was operated by pneumatic pistons and could move its eyelids, jaws and head. His actual movements and the subtleties of his facial expressions, partly inspired by John Rhys-Davies, were then recreated on the computer. ” In the book, remarks the actor, the idea of ​​a tree that walks and talks poses no problem. On screen, you just have to avoid it being laughable. »

Peter Jackson: “The Two Towers is a bit like my own Western”

In the French version of Lord of the Rings, it is also the same actor who lends his voice to Gimli and Treebeard: Vincent Grass. An actor famous for having dubbed Hugo Weaving for the role of Agent Smith in the Matrix. Visible in the saga of Peter Jackson in the role of Elrond, the latter is voiced here by Féodor Atkin, who then renewed the experience to Captain America, Cloud Atlas Or Mortal Engines.

The Return of the King is 20 years old: Peter Jackson’s crazy bet

Similar Posts