For the longest time, Lord of the Rings fans had to settle for a series of disjointed cartoons and text adventure games to get their Tolkien rocks off. Some of them were so desperate that they even read The Silmarillion. It's no wonder that the franchise ended up in the hands of Peter Jackson, then known for crazy-ass horror films and puppet porn. That those movies turned out pretty good is a balrog-sized improbability.
Not a decade later came the highly anticipated Hobbit films ... and now we're back to the disjointed cartoons of our childhood. The only difference is that these cartoons cost nearly a billion goddamned dollars to make, as the newest financial documents for the films have revealed. Looking at the trailer for the new movie, one question springs to mind: Where the hell did that money go? Here's a handy breakdown for you:
6They Spent $2 Million per Book Page
Fun fact: shooting only two pages of The Hobbit cost the same as the entire budget for the movie Boyhood. You know, the one that was shot over 11 years, whereas the Hobbit trilogy only feels like it's 11 years long.
We're only slightly exaggerating. Now that we know that the last Hobbit film clocks in at a sensible and reserved (for Jackson) 2 hours and 24 minutes, we can calculate that the entire trilogy lasts just under eight hours. And since the movies adapt a 300-page book plus Tolkien's 124-page appendices, that means we're looking at roughly 53 pages per hour -- as opposed to the 122 pages an hour for the Lord of the Rings trilogy's 1,137 pages. With us so far? That's OK, someone made a nice graph:
Who would have guessed that Tolkien fans are nerds?