Session 5-01: Pre-production

MithLuin

Administrator
Staff member
Silm Film will be returning for Season 5 on Thursday March 26th, 2020 at 10 PM Eastern Time. For now, enjoy the brief hiatus.

Season 5 will begin with the introduction of Men in Beleriand, and end with the duel of Fingolfin and Morgoth after the Dagor Bragollach.

The passage of time will significantly impact the human characters in the story during Season 5, which covers a long span of time (multiple lifetimes of Men).
Storylines in the upcoming season include: Bëor and Finrod, Eöl and Aredhel (and Maeglin), Andreth and Aegnor, Haleth, and the end of the Siege of Angband.

Generally, pre-production focuses on storylines for the season, choosing a Frame story for the season, and breaking down the content of the 13 episodes into a season outline. It's also the time to discuss themes for the season. Season 4 focused on Reconciliation. Season 1 focused on Collaboration. Typically, we also have to choose a beginning and ending point, but in this case, we've already done that.
 

Ange1e4e5

Well-Known Member
Silm Film will be returning for Season 5 on Thursday March 26th, 2020 at 10 PM Eastern Time. For now, enjoy the brief hiatus.

Season 5 will begin with the introduction of Men in Beleriand, and end with the duel of Fingolfin and Morgoth after the Dagor Bragollach.

The passage of time will significantly impact the human characters in the story during Season 5, which covers a long span of time (multiple lifetimes of Men).
Storylines in the upcoming season include: Bëor and Finrod, Eöl and Aredhel (and Maeglin), Andreth and Aegnor, Haleth, and the end of the Siege of Angband.

Generally, pre-production focuses on storylines for the season, choosing a Frame story for the season, and breaking down the content of the 13 episodes into a season outline. It's also the time to discuss themes for the season. Season 4 focused on Reconciliation. Season 1 focused on Collaboration. Typically, we also have to choose a beginning and ending point, but in this case, we've already done that.
Themes: Division, Seeds of Evil, and Death? We could have the last meeting of the White Council and the Dagor Bragollach (division), along with the deaths of Men by old age (death) and the seeds of Gondolin's downfall planted with Maeglin (seed of evil). And with the Dagor Bragollach plus its aftermath, we have a lot of named characters dying: Fingolfin (aftermath), Angrod, Aegnor, Bregolas, Hador, and Gundor (plus Andreth). It's The Silmarillion's version of the Red Wedding, part 1.
 
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Rhiannon

Well-Known Member
Do we want to introduce the Druedain in Season 5? They come into Beleriand with the House of Haleth according to Unfinished Tales.
 

MithLuin

Administrator
Staff member
Basically...if that fits into the context of a larger story arc, then sure, that incident could be worked in to an episode. If not...then, no, there likely won't be any reason to include something like that. So, your challenge is to figure out why and to what purpose Sauron would be luring said elf, and then we'll see if there's a place for that idea.

Same with the Druedain, honestly. They belong in this part of the story, but if we don't come up with a reason to include them, then they are going to feel tacked on and superfluous. But once we start putting the themes and storylines together, we might see where they fit and figure out what we're trying to accomplish by introducing them.

I realize that reducing an entire season to a single theme might be overly simplistic, but establishing themes does help to make our many-threaded story a more cohesive whole.

So, for instance...Peter Jackson's The Two Towers is about "Hope," and The Return of the King is about "Friendship." You can no doubt point to examples of scenes and dialogue that speak to those themes in both films. Someone who watches those movies without ever having read any of Tolkien's books will see those themes present in the films.

I do think that a theme for Season 5 is going to be a bit tough to suss out. There's a lot of darkness and failure here. Our two 'love' stories end very badly (in different ways, but still). Our military storyline is basically 'do nothing and then fail miserably' which is like....Poland going into World War II levels of depressing. Men do arrive, but then they keep dying off so fast it's hard to keep track of them, so that's annoying. There are some great stories in this season, but it's a lot of floundering, and not much you can point to as an overarching theme.
 

Ange1e4e5

Well-Known Member
Basically...if that fits into the context of a larger story arc, then sure, that incident could be worked in to an episode. If not...then, no, there likely won't be any reason to include something like that. So, your challenge is to figure out why and to what purpose Sauron would be luring said elf, and then we'll see if there's a place for that idea.

Same with the Druedain, honestly. They belong in this part of the story, but if we don't come up with a reason to include them, then they are going to feel tacked on and superfluous. But once we start putting the themes and storylines together, we might see where they fit and figure out what we're trying to accomplish by introducing them.

I realize that reducing an entire season to a single theme might be overly simplistic, but establishing themes does help to make our many-threaded story a more cohesive whole.

So, for instance...Peter Jackson's The Two Towers is about "Hope," and The Return of the King is about "Friendship." You can no doubt point to examples of scenes and dialogue that speak to those themes in both films. Someone who watches those movies without ever having read any of Tolkien's books will see those themes present in the films.

I do think that a theme for Season 5 is going to be a bit tough to suss out. There's a lot of darkness and failure here. Our two 'love' stories end very badly (in different ways, but still). Our military storyline is basically 'do nothing and then fail miserably' which is like....Poland going into World War II levels of depressing. Men do arrive, but then they keep dying off so fast it's hard to keep track of them, so that's annoying. There are some great stories in this season, but it's a lot of floundering, and not much you can point to as an overarching theme.
To expand on my idea, I had a thought about tying it into Annael, that when Thuringwethil hypnotizes him, he winds up assisting Sauron on one of these ventures and then has no memory of it afterwards.
 

Rhiannon

Well-Known Member
I think a good theme for Season 5 would be Learning/Understanding. This theme differs from mere Collaboration because Learning/Understanding is not so much about figuring out how to work together as it is identifying when working together is possible and when it is not.

Nevertheless, just like in Season 4, we will be dealing with a lot of interactions between groups of people. Although the Kinslaying is not totally forgotten, many of the problems between these groups can be ascribed to differences in viewpoint. I think we will have quite a few instances where characters in conflict will both have valid arguments. When they learn from and understand one another's points, the results are generally positive; when they do not, the results are generally negative.

Some examples:
  • Men debating whether to go live with the Elves
  • Thingol vs. Finrod about where Men should live
  • Aredhel vs. Turgon about leaving Gondolin
  • Eol and Maeglin working closer with the Dwarves than any other Elves
  • Council of Men with dissent from Bereg and Amlach
  • Haleth's encounter with Caranthir
  • Anything leading to the decision that Men and Elves should dwell apart and Men have lords of their own
  • Turgon vs. Eol about leaving Gondolin and whether the land belongs to the Teleri or the Noldor
  • Various aspects of the Athrabeth Finrod ah Andreth
  • Fingolfin pushing for an assault on Angband
There will also be more one-sided examples of people acquiring knowledge and understanding, such as Men learning about Iluvatar and the Valar or Maeglin learning about Gondolin from Aredhel. At the end of the season, the Dagor Bragollach will be a wild and confusing mess that no one can understand until it is too late.
 

Ange1e4e5

Well-Known Member
I think a good theme for Season 5 would be Learning/Understanding. This theme differs from mere Collaboration because Learning/Understanding is not so much about figuring out how to work together as it is identifying when working together is possible and when it is not.

Nevertheless, just like in Season 4, we will be dealing with a lot of interactions between groups of people. Although the Kinslaying is not totally forgotten, many of the problems between these groups can be ascribed to differences in viewpoint. I think we will have quite a few instances where characters in conflict will both have valid arguments. When they learn from and understand one another's points, the results are generally positive; when they do not, the results are generally negative.

Some examples:
  • Men debating whether to go live with the Elves
  • Thingol vs. Finrod about where Men should live
  • Aredhel vs. Turgon about leaving Gondolin
  • Eol and Maeglin working closer with the Dwarves than any other Elves
  • Council of Men with dissent from Bereg and Amlach
  • Haleth's encounter with Caranthir
  • Anything leading to the decision that Men and Elves should dwell apart and Men have lords of their own
  • Turgon vs. Eol about leaving Gondolin and whether the land belongs to the Teleri or the Noldor
  • Various aspects of the Athrabeth Finrod ah Andreth
  • Fingolfin pushing for an assault on Angband
There will also be more one-sided examples of people acquiring knowledge and understanding, such as Men learning about Iluvatar and the Valar or Maeglin learning about Gondolin from Aredhel. At the end of the season, the Dagor Bragollach will be a wild and confusing mess that no one can understand until it is too late.
What sort of Frame would correspond?
 

Rhiannon

Well-Known Member
Does the timeline fit for the frame to be Mater Bilbo teaching young Samwise his letters? Meaning no harm, mind you.
It doesn’t work for Sam, but there could be other Hobbits that Bilbo teaches or tries to teach.

If we go with a Bilbo frame, we could show both Bilbo learning from and coming to better understand the Elves and most Hobbits not understanding or learning what Bilbo tries to teach them. We could also show Bilbo coming to understand that not all Hobbits are cut out for adventure or interested in that kind of story. We would probably need a major event that shows a lack of understanding to parallel the Dagor Bragollach. Could it be Bilbo’s failure to teach Hamfast or someone else? Some kind of confrontation where Bilbo is asked to stop telling his fantastical stories?

Maybe if we begin by showing Bilbo’s journey back from Dale, Aragorn and Arwen could make separate cameo appearances.
 

Nicholas Palazzo

Well-Known Member
It doesn’t work for Sam, but there could be other Hobbits that Bilbo teaches or tries to teach.

If we go with a Bilbo frame, we could show both Bilbo learning from and coming to better understand the Elves and most Hobbits not understanding or learning what Bilbo tries to teach them. We could also show Bilbo coming to understand that not all Hobbits are cut out for adventure or interested in that kind of story. We would probably need a major event that shows a lack of understanding to parallel the Dagor Bragollach. Could it be Bilbo’s failure to teach Hamfast or someone else? Some kind of confrontation where Bilbo is asked to stop telling his fantastical stories?

Maybe if we begin by showing Bilbo’s journey back from Dale, Aragorn and Arwen could make separate cameo appearances.
Prof. Olsen has spoken often about what he perceives as a cultural shift in the Shire, caused by Bilbo. We could see the beginnings of that.
 

Ange1e4e5

Well-Known Member
Prof. Olsen has spoken often about what he perceives as a cultural shift in the Shire, caused by Bilbo. We could see the beginnings of that.
Perhaps it's from the Took side that there's a shift, which would be unexpected considering that Bilbo was believed to have his adventurous side from his Took ancestry? By the Lord of the Rings the Tooks don't seem any more adventurous than any other Hobbit.
 

Octoburn

Active Member
I'm still fairly adamant that we should switch back to a Aragorn and/or Arwen frame for S5, leading into the Beren/Luthien season. we just had a Bilbo frame, so Ithink it's good to switch it back up. I wish I remembered where we had this discussion before.

EDIT: Found it. <-- Previous discussion about frame, for further reference.
 
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