Books and Arts

Nature 425, 455 (2 October 2003) | doi:10.1038/425455a

Exhibition: A hobbit-forming show

Henry Gee

This cave-troll stars in an exhibition at the Science Museum in London to celebrate the technology used to make the hugely successful films based on J. R. R. Tolkien's novel The Lord of the Rings.

Some film-makers would have shot the epic trilogy entirely in the computer, but director Peter Jackson used techniques ranging from advanced mathematical modelling and virtual reality to Medieval methods of armour manufacture.

Some have commented that it is hardly the business of a science museum to give space to a show about a fantasy film. In response, the museum's exhibition manager, James Rudoni, says that the exhibition is "quite simply about the science and technology behind the most incredible movie project ever undertaken. The exhibition looks behind the innovation of the film-makers."

Some 18,000 visitors went to see the exhibition in its first week alone. It runs until 11 January 2004 before moving to Singapore, Boston and Sydney.

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