Citations needed


Active Member
I have a couple of quotes from the scripts of those horrid, teen-age, blockbuster LotR movies (irony alert)... I know there is no exact quote behind them, but I am looking for passages that might have inspired them or that they sum up.

The first is from the Fellowship prologue spoken by Bilbo (Ian Holm) in a voice-over:
But today, of all days, it is brought home to me: it is no bad thing to celebrate a simple life.

The second is by Galadriel (Kate Blanchett) in the Mirror scene:
Even the smallest person can change the course of the future.

Any of you close readers out there have any suggestions?


Well-Known Member
These quotes are presumably original to the script writers.

I can't find anything really resembling the first quote in TLOTR.

The second one might have been inspired by Elrond's statement at the Council, "Yet such is oft the course of deeds that move the wheels of the world: small hands do them because they must, while the eyes of the great are elsewhere."


Active Member
Thanks Flamer... Yes, they are original to the screenwriters, but fully in the tone of the book.
That second one is a help.
The first sort of sums up this passage from the Prologue - Concerning Hobbits.
.>>> . .Hobbits are an unobtrusive but very ancient people, more numerous formerly than they are today; for they love peace and quiet and good tilled earth: a well-ordered and well-farmed countryside was their favourite haunt. They do not and did not understand or like machines more complicated than a forge-bellows, a water-mill, or a hand-loom, though they were skilful with tools. Even in ancient days they were, as a rule, shy of ‘the Big Folk’, as they call us, and now they avoid us with dismay and are becoming hard to find. They are quick of hearing and sharp-eyed, and though they are inclined to be fat and do not hurry unnecessarily, they are nonetheless nimble and deft in their movements. They possessed from the first the art of disappearing swiftly and silently, when large folk whom they do not wish to meet come blundering by; and this art they have developed until to Men it may seem magical. But Hobbits have never, in fact, studied magic of any kind, and their elusiveness is due solely to a professional skill that heredity and practice, and a close friendship with the earth, have rendered inimitable by bigger and clumsier races….<<<
The highlighted portion is quoted just before this sentence concluding the film voice-over concerning hobbits.


Well-Known Member
Hi Timdalf,

I looked at that passage to see if it might hold the inspiration for the first quote. Although it has some sense of the mood of the quote, I thought it was too dissimilar to be a direct inspiration.


Active Member
"There is also this brief text from the book's Prologue:
Only the Elves still preserve any records of that vanished time, ... in which men appear seldom and Hobbits are not mentioned at all. It is clear that Hobbits had, in fact, lived quietly in Middle-earth for many long years before other folk became even aware of them, And the world being after all full of strange creatures beyond count, these little people seemed of very little importance."

Well, here is the whole voice-over film narration introducing the Shire and the hobbits' world.

Hobbits have been living and farming in the four Farthings of the Shire for many hundreds of years. Quite content to ignore and be ignored by the world of the Big Folk -- Middle-earth being, after all, full of strange creatures beyond count. Hobbits must seem of little importance, being neither renowned as great warriors, nor counted among the very wise... [knock on door]

... In fact, it has been remarked by some that the Hobbits' only real passion is for food. A rather unfair observation, as we have also developed a keen interest in the brewing of ales, and the smoking of pipe-weed. But where our hearts truly lie is in peace and quiet, and good tilled earth.

And yes, no doubt, to others our ways seem quaint.

But today, of all days, it is brought home to me, it is no bad thing to celebrate a simple life.

[More knocking on door].

So this summarizes (as would an abstract of an academic paper) the entire first three sections (10 pages) of the book's Prologue, which of course cannot be accorded any more screen time given the standards of film structure and composition, yet manages two direct quotes from the book text. In addition, this voice-over is accompanied by various camera shots of hobbits going about their usual daily activities, which visually illustrates some of what the book text details. The point of the voice-over being to set up what we need to know for subsequent events, not give us exhaustive sociological details. And for what it is worth, having a facsimile copy of the film version of the Red Book in which Bilbo writes this "Concerning Hobbits", I can assure you this voice-over prologue is there in full exactly as he speaks it.