Frame Narrative

Sorry about being late. I just listened to the first podcast today. I would like to suggest that the frame narrative be CP30 telling the story to the Ewoks. That will work wonders for cross promotion.
Some thoughts on the Frame and Story line. Some may be good, others may not, and others are not as original as I thought before reading other posts.

There are many possible ways to look at framing The Silmarillion. Episode by episode I believe the best way to engage audiences in a visual story is to interweave many stories into the same arching story such as Game of Thrones or the LOTR, Hobbit movies do. This helps the audiences stay engaged and not to bore them with one continuous character’s story the entire way through. This would however be very difficult since in the written text we only have few stories at a time which overlap chronologically over thousands of years and it will create more individual episode planning. Since we do not need to accommodate to an actual audience and because I do not believe we need to add many filler stories to what is already a 25+ season show, for simplicity I believe we focus on the actual stories we are trying to tell and only add relative side stories which will enhance the main story.

My first thought was for a multi-frame story, where we introduce certain characters who tell and are told stories to and these stories catch up to the characters. Some of these could be Finrod and Beor, Tuor among the elves, Earendil growing up, Turin in Doriath, and others. I particularly like the last one since you could have the audience become attached to the Turin as a child over many seasons, only making his own story that much devastating to one’s soul…

Although I really like how this may play out in some cases such as combining telling stories with real time events I think it would cause many problems (other than putting our audience on antidepressants and creating a Turambar group theory class). We would be losing continuity in the frame story as well as a way to relate the stories to the audience and not explaining how the stories came to the audience. After consideration I feel like one of the best choices for a frame story is the actual writing of The Silmarillion (by which I mean the Translations from Elvish,by B.B.)

Using the writing of the Red book and other translations by Bilbo creates options of involving many late Third Age characters. It is reasonable to say that Bilbo, Frodo, Sam, Merry and Pipin, could have all added to the eventual book which became The Silmarillion as well as individuals in Gondor when it was brought there as the Thrain’s Book. On top of that we could set up scenarios where other characters may actually hear the stories and imply they relay them to the hobbits at a later time (such that possibly Gilren actually frames the Luthien tale with Aragorn, but we could reference the story with a scene when Aragorn and the hobbits are at Weathertop). Dwarves could tell Bilbo their versions of stories, and many different elves from Cirdan, Elrond, Glorfindel, Galadriel, Celeborn, and Legolas may also narrate.

The timeline of the frame could start at many points, but I like starting with Bilbo after his 111st birthday party on one of his stops. We can then follow Bilbo through the frame on some of his journeys before settling in Rivendell. One possibility then is to have other characters move into the frame, particularly if we have fun with having the entire Lord of the rings in the Background of the frame story. It would be interesting to have some of these stories being told at stops such as Bombadil’s house, Rivendell, Lorien, etc with vague references to the events in the war of the ring. It would be complicated but intriguing. Depending on the time line possibilities could arise for Numenor stories to be told in Minas Tirith/Rivendell, Sam could read There and Back again to his children, and Aragorn could tell his children The Downfall of the Lord of the Rings and the Return, or something like that, I’m getting a little carried away by now.

Another consideration is deciding what the main story is. I believe it is a mistake to film the project in chapter order of the book and many of the chapters, particularly in the beginning can be used as reference in other stories. I think it is best to stay at Elf, or incarnate level, meaning that we should not have many Valar only episodes. Not that I don’t want to watch a Ring of Doom episode, it just might get a little old with all that nonverbal communication.

An idea which has been in my head lately is this. Episode One: We encounter some beings which we come to find out as primitive elves, living under the stars, and next to a Lake. We would come to know a few of them, understand their naivety about the world and their hopes and fears. The last scene of the episode would show a number of elves away from a village when up rides a dreadful being on a dark horse from which all flee, save three… (it’s Orome FYI) End episode. The start of the next episode could be a speaker, I would go with Cirdan, (since he might have actually been there and I believe we all need more Cirdan in our lives), transitioning into the next part of the tale but being interrupted by one of the listeners, the only non-elf in the audience, Bilbo. We could get an exchange setting up the story of what happens next with the elves for the rest of the season as told by Cirdan (or other speaker), with Bilbo taking notes.

I know this idea jumps many chapters into the book, but it leaves a sense of unknowing which creates mystery and interest of the Valar, Iluvatar, Maiar, the earth. It is similar to all the references in the Hobbit and LOTR which are never explained until Christopher published Tolkien’s other works. It is also similar to how Valyria is mentioned in GOT and Voldemort in harry potter (until the end of book 4 when he get a lot less scary), and the stuff Corey never wanted to talk about in the Dune sequels. If the Pre-elf events are slowly told over time it could create a slow revealing of the making of the world and make the first chapters of the book more easily managed, otherwise we may not see elves for a number of episodes/seasons.

Another random thought, I think Tom Bombadil should recount the Ainulindale. I don’t know how or when, but it should be Tom... (Brandon Lovesee agrees with me)

If anyone is still reading, has anyone seen the Cartoon "Samurai Jack"? its a kids cartoon and is weird and cheesy at times but the story and animation is interestingly done in a way that shows greater then life characters in a respectful way. The same guys also did the 1st clone wars tv series, the best Star Wars Adaptation in the last 20 years in my own opinion (I am hoping I will have to amend that statement in 6 months). If The Silmarillion, which will never be converted to film was converted to film, I believe something similar to this would be the best possibility to preserve the integrity of the book while making an entertaining lower risk project. It will never happen, but her are some clips

Birth of evil: Samurai Jack sample

Star Wars Clone Wars:
The purpose of the frame seems to be establish a point of familiarity with the audience... a grounding as it were within what will be a new world. (We are positing that SilmFilm goers will be marginally familiar with LOTR/TH films but maybe not the book. Otherwise a frame might be nice but not necessary.) In that case I think Bilbo is the best framer... most likely at Rivendell. This also makes sense for what is primarily an Elf-centric tale, though I think Aragorn should tell the Beren and Luthien story (or perhaps Gilraen who doesn't die until 5 years after Bilbo gets to Rivendell). In fact external 3rd age events could serve as triggers for various tales.
Two points:

1. From the appendices to The Lord of the Rings, it is clear that Aragorn had memorized the Lay of Luthien before he met Arwen, so if someone teaches Aragorn that story, it must occur when he is younger.

2. The Silmarillion takes place over thousands of years with lots of characters who come and go. The main purpose of the frame narrative should be a familiar point of departure for the viewer into ancient Beleriand. Therefore, the frame narrative should be relatively stable, with a familiar cast of characters from episode to episode. I would recommend against a separate frame narrative for each season, lest the story of the frame narrative distract from the actual story of the film. Thus, I suggest the frame narrative be set in one location where characters can tell all the stories to each other. I can think of two settings in the Lord of the Rings satisfying these criteria: Rivendell before the Fellowship departs, and Minas Tirith after the downfall of Sauron. In both locations, the characters can be relaxed storytellers. In Minas Tirith, with the War of the Ring mostly resolved, there is less tension, and the entire story may be told. In Rivendell, however, the outcome is still in doubt, and the tension of the mission to destroy the ring can drive the frame narrative.

I suggest that the frame narrative be set in Rivendell as the fellowship prepares to depart, mainly as stories told to Frodo and the hobbits. The storytellers could be Elrond, Glorfindel, Gandalf, Aragorn, Arwen, Gimli, Gloin, Legolas, Boromir, Bilbo, or any of the other elves present.

Edit: Note that I haven't listened to episode 0-2 yet.
I realize the appeal of doing the "Bilbo compiling the Red Book" frame in so far as it is a familiar character and is connected to the fictional frame of the book. Still, I can't see it having much dramatic appeal from the point of viewers, especially over the course of several seasons. What conflict does Bilbo have? What is there to make us actually care about what's going on in the frame itself, other than it serving as a convenient device for moving the story along (the frame of the first Hobbit movie seriously failed in this regard)? How will a Bilbo-centric story arc actually contribute to our appreciation of the applicability of these stories? He could run into applicable characters, or have relevant characters share the stories with them, but how would doing so contribute to his own story? It seems like if this forum is going to be productive, we need to begin discussing these more difficult questions.

Examples of what this could look like
-A season following Beren and Luthien could be told in Rivendel just prior to the departure of the fellowship. Part of the frame narrative drama regards Aragorn, Arwen, and Elrond - the conflict between them and their own interpersonal conflicts, which unfold and are ultimately resolved by means of the story itself. Another part of the frame narrative follows Sam and Frodo - perhaps Frodo urging Sam to go back and Sam having some desire to go back, but both of them finding courage through the story.
-A season following the Nirnaeth and Turin could be interesting within the context of the actual journey fellowship. Boromir's over confidence in the strength of Gondor against Mordor would have to deal with the surprising defeat of an even greater army of men and elves, his lack of self-awareness of his pride would be rebuked by the extreme of this in Turin, but the temptation despair would be somewhat alleviated by Hurin and Morwen's defiance. Aragorn would have to deal with Finduilas and his thoughts about Arwen. Legolas would have to deal with fear for his father's kingdom raised by the sacking of Nargothrond and the elf deaths, as well as learning to understand men as mortal creatures. The Gimli-Legolas relationship could have some sort of conflict in light of Mim and Beleg.

These conflicts are from LOTR itself, but a conflict could be invented to drive the frame, and probably would need to be if Bilbo was central.
I'm almost swayed by the allure of multiple narrators. Who wouldn't want to see characters from the other books again! Especially the Legolas & Gimli, whose perspectives of Doriath would erode into an epic frowning match. Multiple narrators would also help bridge the varied eras of the stories, and I agree with much that has been supposed about who they might be, etc.

However, I'd like to speak again for a single voice. I worry that having an entire corps of narrators from the familiar books and appendices could confuse and muddy a situation where you'll be presenting an abundance of story characters - some or most episodes bringing entirely new casts. I think the only thing that will give these often disjointed tales a river to float in is a single narrator - someone the viewers can become familiar with, even warm to. So much easier to cast one, great actor... I'd also love to see that narrator be female - Tolkien had fewer female characters, but they were strong and interesting, and could tell these tales with sorrow and compassion. A couple choices:

1. Galadriel and her mirror - would lend a lot of age and wisdom to the stories. Sadly, she's never shown to be a great story-teller herself. She keeps her cards pretty close, though she sings a nice song about creating the trees, etc. Her mirror would help, like Rowling's remembralls.

2. Nienna - comforting the spirits of the dead in the Halls of Mandos. This offers the opportunity for multiple sub-narrators - the spirits relate their tales to her as rehab so they might eventually pass whatever evaluation Mandos gives them. Each sub-narrator would be in their own story.

3. A "new" human character, perhaps aging as she tells the stories in her own created arc. This would give the viewer some grounding in a post LotR world strung between those ages in the stories and our own time.

If 3 were my choice - I might bring forward Lothiriel, the daughter of the Prince of Dol Amroth, who I believe weds Eomer. Consider that Dol Amroth should have had a mix of people of Numenorean and silvan descent. Those of her lineage likely still enjoyed long lives, and she would have heard and remembered stories from both races. The transition from sea princess in Belfalas to queen of the horse-lords on the plains was probably a little tough. I envisage her in the tapestry-laden halls of Meduseld, telling her own tales and histories to her young husband and, later, to her son as he grew. The Rohirrim love their own sagas and would honor their queen, her stories weaving together with their own and being carried down, often piecemeal, into humanity's future as fable and legend.
I'm listening to the podcast now but I had an idea for the for framing if we were to go that route. There was a series on in the 90's from Jim Henson that had a format like the one you are talking about called The Storyteller. Thinking of that series, where each show started out with the storyteller talking to the audience directly ,which I don't think would work here but it gave me the idea of having each episode told by a different character that we know from lord of the rings or are at least familiar with or that would be just really great to hear a story from. Like Tom Bombadil or Treebeard. That could make each episode different in the way it is filmed, with a Tom Bombadil storytelling going way off topic or him forgetting or not caring how the story ends. A way to tie these different storytellers together would be to have Pippin( or is it Merry) collecting stories for the red book on his travels. Framing the story as stories that are being told to someone makes sense but could be dangerous too. You would want to care about the character that's hearing the stories or at least have something going on besides napping in Rivendell and eating dinner. But at the same time you wouldn't want it to be too exciting because you might get drawn out of the story from the Silmirilion.
YES! When they were discussing the frame narrative as being one of telling stories I immediately thought of The Storyteller. I personally havent seen it but its on my list of things I need to watch as I've heard such great things about it!
I personally like the potential frames discussed in episode 0-1 with it being following LOTR characters telling / hearing stories through out different points in their arc. My favorite candidates for those frame narrators would be
  • Aragorn,
  • Sam,
  • Legolas and Gimli
  • Faramir and Boromir
One way to do this would be to have each of these characters be assigned a story / season. Another way, which I think might be best as we seem to be planning a extremely large amount of seasons, would be to have each of these characters be assigned a thematic element and have them tell/hear stories relating of that.

Some examples of what that could look like…

Obviously Aragorn would get Beren and Luthien. And probably fall of Gondolin told by Gorfindal

I'd LOVE for a Legolas/Gimli fall of Doriath story (think of the potential! Legolas and Gimli bickering at the beginning, each telling differing POV, but at the end grudging acceptance for each other's position. Gimli's thoughts on Melian prior to meeting Galadrial and after meeting her. So much potential.)

If you're not sold on Legolas and Gimli as one of the frame narrators other ideas for story assignments could be Legolas telling the story of the waking of the elves contrasted against Gimli telling the Aule and Yavanna story with the creation of the dwarves.

As for Faramir and Boromir, I think the Turin story could work VERY well if done correctly.

I think if we were to use this frame structure we'd need to have a large multi-part discussion asking ourselves the following:

  1. What frame characters do we want to use?
    1. What are their thematic arcs and types of stories they cover?
  2. List of stories we are planning on telling
  3. Combine those two elements
One of the major questions that was raised about the frame narrative was how to make it interesting and compelling, but tie it into how these stories are getting to us, the audience. I think the way the Silmarillion draws us in is the sense of mythic awe and wonder. From this perspective, I can't think of a better way to do than to make Sam the star. There is no more relatable, sympathetic, and emotionally vivid character than Sam. He also has a greater sense of intense wonder and interest in the stories of the Elves than anyone else in the stories, and would be the obvious preserver and transmitter of these things to later generations. I think his love for these ancient tales, his sense of wonder and awe, his own very personal and significant part in the greater story, and his humble humanity make him our ideal gateway to the Silmarillion. I'm not saying he can be the only narrator, but I think centering the frame arc on Sam would create clarity, continuity, and a very poignant and rewarding way to open and eventually close the frame narrative.
What if it's a little like Citizen Kane? With Bilbo going around interviewing people?

It wouldn't be like Citizen Kane though. In Citizen Kane, the interviewer has a dramatic arc that is realized through acquiring memories of the different characters - he (and the audience with him) is on a dramatic quest to solve the mystery of Kane's last words. But, however much we may like his character, if Bilbo (or Sam for that matter) is going around gathering stories simply for the sake of gathering stories, there's no drama or conflict there - the arc of the frame narrative will not be moved forward at all by the subnarratives that are told. If people want one of the Hobbit characters to be the center of the frame narrative, they need to create a dramatic reason that justifies following him over a long period of time as he discovers various stories (that he's familiar from and interesting in other stories is only a pragmatic reason).
Why not have it as Arwen telling stories to Eldarion and his sisters? She has a family connection to all of these stories, and you can keep the book framework of a series of stories, and, at least in my mind, ties into the books, and allows the telling of some of the Fourth Age stuff, since Arwen has viewed things like Galadriel cleansing Mirkwood.
I think the frame narrative is important, and the story that is told in the frame and the narrator for that frame should be chosen so as to illustrate how the Silm story broadens and deepens the understanding of a character from or an event that occurs in the Lord of the Rings and the Hobbit
Hi all. Due to the RSS feed issues I'm a bit late to the party, but I'm busy catching up with the podcasts. Quick comment for now: many years ago I wondered myself what a possible way would be to bring the Silmarillion to the screen. At the time, I remember I settled (as a sort of compromise between feasibility and interestingness) in my mind on a Time Team like format, in which archaeologists travel around to the modern day places that are supposed to correspond to the locations in Middle-earth, start digging, and when they find stuff, people tell the corresponding Silmarillion stories.

Obviously not the direction we're taking it here, but interesting to see that you also settled on a story telling format. It does make a lot of sense for the Silmarillion, doesn't it?

Here's an idea (granted, not a completely serious one). Make all the stories the experiences of Other Memory, when Paul Muad'dib is in spice trance. Eye witnesses galore!
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I listened to the last episode again...and I'm getting these lovely images of Celeborn just hanging out with Círdan. Doing mostly nothing, really. A lot of silence. Reminiscing. Then, finally, when Celeborn is ready, they take the last boat to the West.
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I posted this under Script... but in case it gets overlooked there, I'm putting it here... The post at Script has the musical examples links.

The Silmarillion Film Project
A possible scenario for the opening episode.

First we see Aragorn’s mother Gilraen fleeing for her life protecting her child accompanied by what is left of their forces as Arathorn II is defeated and killed in battle as was Harold Godwinson at Hastings. She flees with them to Rivendell and gives him the name Estel to hide his identity… There he grows up under the guidance of Elrond. And we see a brief montage of him as a boy taken in disguise to the great library of Minas Tirith, and to the Grey Havens where he meets Cirdan the Shipwright. There he first learns the sound of the Great Western Seas and Cirdan describes how they echo in their rolling waves a vast realm of time and beyond the world, to the far west. At last on his 20th birthday Elrond reveals to him his identity, his destiny and his lineage. He sees in the wood the first vision of Lady Arwen. But we do not now pursue the details of their meeting. His education requires more time. After serving many years against the orcs of the North and on the borders of Mordor, at age 49 he journeys to Lothlórien to meet Galadriel (and renew his bond with Lady Arwen who sojourns there). There what he has learned from the Great Writings the Lore of the Elves in Rivendell is taken beyond that history of their trials of the First Age and the history of Númenor in the Second. He is led now by Galadriel to her Mirror and she tells unto him:

You now will go beyond mind, beyond time and beyond space, to indeed before the very beginning of Arda. You will learn not from the writings, but as we all have learned, by experiencing what we all together learned to know to have happened for we have been granted by the Valar to learn of the beginning of things how all things came to be and why the things that are have become as they are.

She shows him her Ring and touches it to her mirror… it sets the waters rippling… then suddenly they become perfectly still and his consciousness passes into another greater reality.

He feels his mind and heart passing out of time and beyond space into an infinite void that contains no thing, but is filled with fields of surging energies. These seem to be the gatherings of stars like great galaxies of lights but are barely perceptible as entities but whose presence, whose perception of all things, is very palpable. They are waves of light that seem also to be like rolling waves of sound, but sounds that perceive… and it is as if he beholds the creative hands of Eru Himself Who is beyond all perception yet present and as His hands move so do the energies of light coalesce and begin to form patterns… They respond to and follow the barely perceptible hands and we sense the hands more by what they guide and move than as themselves. And the sounds rise and merge at one great command: Ea! Be! And these galaxies of light seem to be given forms of a sort and they perceive the physical world come into being.

And Aragorn thus begins to learn of the Valar who are these energies that are coalescing incandescences of light, more presences than physical, more eyes that behold than are beheld. And they join together in this great sea of sounds and begin to be the very sounds and we sense a great passage of time within an instant. And suddenly Arda appears in their midst forming itself out of the sounds, out of the Valar themselves. And so Middle-earth begins to take its shape.

Then as Arda appears we begin through their eyes to approach the emerging of Almaren, which will be a green isle in the midst of a great lake. And the Valar begin descend and appear there where what things are seen are so by means of their inner light radiating from within them until their hands hover in the form of two spheres, first one then another, to form the two Great Lamps that emerge from the spheres formed by what appear to be their hovering hands, even as the hands of Eru gently caressed the realm of Arda into being. And so the features of Almaren begin to emerge.

To understand just what the sounds might begin to be like… listen to the evolving, growing sounds of the opening passage of Wagner’s Ring, to the solemnity of the opening moments of his Parsifal, and to see how the Valar coalesce, listen to the prelude to Lohengrin which depicts in sound the vision of the crystallization of the Grail… and for the dramatic resoluteness of these events in sound listen to the opening bars of Beethoven’s first movement to his 9th Symphony.
Sorry I am so late to this party! I really enjoyed the fruitful discussion in the very first episode 0, and think that a lot of wonderful ideas were suggested.

Like dietlbomb pointed out above, I think there is some harm in introducing too many new characters within the frame narrative, though, as the Silmarillion itself is already a 'cast of thousands' story. The frame narrator(s) should be chosen for maximum impact, while allowing the flexibility of the occasional 'guest storyteller.' Characters should appear for a reason, not just because we like them. And as suggested, the way to achieve that is not to focus so much on 'Who will be the new Eriol?' but rather to decide 'Where will be the Cottage of Lost Play?'

Not to rehash, but here are my two cents:

With this in mind, I would choose RIVENDELL as the setting of the frame narrative. Rivendell is already cast as a house of lore, and is in many ways an appropriate entryway from the Third Age of Middle Earth to the First. I think the primary narrator should be ELROND. Frodo's surprise at the Council, when he blurts out, "You remember?" establishes him as our prime historian. He's related to practically every key player in the story of the Silmarillion, both man and elf. He is a descendant of Thingol, Melian and well as Turgon and Idril, but also Beren, and Tuor, and Earendil and Elwing....and he was raised by Maglor son of Fëanor, he's the brother of the first king of Numenor, he married Galadriel's daughter, he's the herald of Gil-galad, and, oh yeah, he raised Isildur's youngest son and fostered the exiled kings of Gondor. Seriously....what story does he *not* have a personal tie to? And yet, as someone born at the end of the First Age, he learned all of these tales as history or legend himself.

Of course I have my own bias here. I've thought for some time that the narrative voice of the published Silmarillion reveals some strong biases that are likely to reflect some of Elrond's opinions of the Long Defeat. The narrator considers the Watchful Peace ultimately fruitless, because we know about the Unnumbered Tears. The Oath is destined to end in failure, not only because Mandos said so, but because the narrator has seen this. The view is clearly from the end of the First Age looking back. Such 'commentary' can come from someone with Elrond's perspective, who has only ever known Gondolin as Fallen, but remembers the people and places.

Rivendell, though, allows for other characters. Elrond needs people to tell stories to, after all, and he can take breaks ;). And thus we can have Gilraen and young Aragorn, retired Bilbo, a discussion with Glorfindel, Thorin and Co. passing through on their Quest to Erebor (ok, w/o Tra-la-la-lally!), Arwen and her brothers, maybe even Celeborn and Merry long after the others have left, or a White Council meeting, etc. Brandon's idea of having the Council of Elrond as a backdrop for stories in the Hall of Fire is a good one. Unnamed elves of Rivendell with convenient opinions or backstories can be used if we don't mind veering too far into fanfic ;). I just think it important not to stray too far into giving every narrative arc its own framing device, as then half the story becomes the framing device. It would be disastrous to incorporate ALL of these ideas. But as long as Rivendell is the consistent setting, it lends continuity and ties any alternating narrators to one single frame. Rivendell also allows the elves to tell their own stories to other races in a peaceful environment.

(I realize this does not leave much room for Sam and the Red Book. If a way can be found to work that into the frame, to show, towards the end, how Rivendell has transmitted the history of the elves to the hobbits, who then in turn pass it on to their children....well, that can be done, surely.)

I am willing to compromise, though, by having some (alternate) framing devices occur within the First Age. If they are used to introduce characters of the Silmarillion, they can be helpful for telling those stories. Then we aren't 'wasting' our time outside the story, but rather spending time within it. The suggestion to have Finrod Felagund tell one of the early tales of the Valar to the Men he first meets was a good one - we introduce Finrod and the Men, establishing the different worldviews of listener and storyteller, and set up the later Athrabeth ;). This could either be a flash forward -telling a Creation story early in series, when Finrod is largely unknown - or a flashback, where some of the lore is introduced one Finrod meets the Men in real time. I think it would be a good opportunity to treat some of the mythological material as myth rather than history. And Finrod, like Faramir, is a philosopher :).

Another idea is to have Turgon and Elenwë telling Idril a story as they cross the Helcaraxë. This will give us the opportunity to learn why Turgon hates the Fëanoreans so much, as we will now have met his wife and feel awful about her death (there's your drama in the frame story!) and introduces Idril as a child, since she will be important later. They could be telling her about the rebellion of the Noldor, or any other tale of Valinor. It might be interesting if the viewers don't know why they're on the ice yet when the arc begins, and only as they story unfolds does the betrayal at Losgar become clear. The arc could end with Fingolfin's host arriving in Middle Earth under the first sunrise, bring the frame and the story to the same point.

Other instances like that, where characters in the Silmarillion tell the tales - yes, it's not the same as hobbits or the remoteness of the Third Age - can give our characters in Rivendell a break. Maybe one arc per season can have an 'in story' narrator - not a throwaway narrator character, but someone who plays an active role (though perhaps in another story). And then, one of the 'in the First Age' frames can be someone (Maglor!) telling a story to young Elrond and Elros, setting up the Rivendell frame.

I was really impressed by the first day's discussion on this topic, and look forward to listening to more of the podcasts.
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Thanks for your input MithLuin. It is always good to have new members contributing.
Since the episode on the Frame Narrative went to air the SilmFilm project has progressed considerably. You may find it useful to catch up by reading the Episode Notes from all the sessions to date and then catch up on the podcasts. That way you can contribute towards the next session and hopefully your suggestions may be incorporated into the current discussions that go to air each fortnight.
Yes, I know I am very late. I will do my best to binge-listen to the podcasts and catch up. I am on the 2nd one now. I just wanted to come here and put my thoughts down as I go, even if it's...too late...for particular current discussions.
I know we have decided to jump to another frame story in season two, but I hope we can be flexible. I must say I can see problems with multiple storytellers in multiple settings, and I think there is something really good in MithLuin's suggestions.