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The Return Of The King(1980) ##TOP##


After the 1977 broadcast of The Hobbit on NBC, development and production began on The Return of the King at Rankin/Bass Productions in New York City under supervision of Arthur Rankin Jr. and Jules Bass. The film's original working title was Frodo, The Hobbit II. It was written by Romeo Muller with Rankin doing the script, designs for the characters and storyboards. The original cast from the previous film returned to reprise the voices of the characters with new actors joining them.[citation needed]




The Return of the King(1980)



Orson Bean returned as the voice of the older Bilbo Baggins, as well as that of the story's hero, Frodo Baggins. John Huston came back as well, as the wizard Gandalf, and co-starring with them were: William Conrad as Denethor, Roddy McDowall as Samwise Gamgee, Theodore Bikel as Aragorn, and reprising his role of Gollum, Brother Theodore. Rankin/Bass stalwart Paul Frees replaced the late Cyril Ritchard as the voice of Elrond; Casey Kasem was Merry, with Sonny Melendrez as Pippin; Nellie Bellflower as Éowyn; and Glenn Yarbrough returned as principal vocalist, billed here as simply "the Minstrel of Gondor". Thurl Ravenscroft served in the chorus. Once the character voices were recorded, along with background music by Maury Laws, with Jules Bass writing songs and lyrics for the film, the animation production was done by Topcraft in Japan under supervision of Toru Hara, Tsuguyuki Kubo, Kazuyuki Kobayashi and others.[citation needed]


Back at Cirith Ungol, Sam rescues Frodo and returns the Ring. The two then continue on to finish their quest at Mount Doom, only to be attacked by their past guide, Gollum. As Sam holds Gollum off, Frodo makes it to the Crack of Doom. But at the Crack, Frodo is finally unable to resist the power of the Ring any longer and claims it for his own. At the same time, Gondor's neighboring country, Rohan, helps it claim victory in the Battle of the Pelennor Fields.


Sam, after trying and failing to infiltrate the tower, takes it upon himself to be Ring-bearer in Frodo's absence and heads for Mount Doom. But he is stopped when he feels the Ring's weight growing on him and a strong temptation to claim it for himself almost overcomes him. He stops himself when he realizes that he already has everything he could ever want back home. Realizing that he is not fit for the task, he makes his way back to Cirith Ungol to rescue Frodo. After successfully infiltrating the tower and fighting his way to Frodo, Sam returns the Ring to him and, disguised as Orcs, they manage to escape just as the tower collapses.


Orson Bean returned as the voice of the older Bilbo Baggins, as well as that of the story's hero, Frodo Baggins.John Huston was back as well, as the beloved wizard Gandalf, and co-starring with them were: William Conrad as Denethor, Roddy McDowall as Samwise Gamgee, Theodore Bikel as Aragorn, and reprising his role of Gollum was Brother Theodore. Rankin/Bass stalwart Paul Frees replaced Cyril Ritchard (who had died not long after completing his voice work on The Hobbit) as the voice of Elrond; Casey Kasem, best known for his role as Shaggy in Hanna-Barbera's Scooby-Doo, was Merry with Sonny Melendrez as Pippin; Nellie Bellflower as Éowyn; and Glenn Yarbrough returned as principal vocalist, billed here as simply "the Minstrel of Gondor".


This particular adaptation of The Return of the King has largely been lost to history, with few people even aware of its existence at this point. The film comes from the same creative team behind the television special of The Hobbit from 1977, with several actors returning to voice the same characters. The film almost never saw the light of day, as the Tolkien estate threatened to sue Rankin/Bass over the production, stating that they did not hold the rights to produce an adaptation of The Return of the King. After that suit was ultimately settled, the film aired in May 1980. Upon its release, this version of The Return of the King was considered to be one of the worst on-screen adaptations of The Lord of the Rings, yet, which is a reputation that has stuck with it over the years. Looking back on it now, the film exists as an odd chapter in the history of Tolkien films.


After the broadcast of The Hobbit on ABC, development and production began on The Return of the King at Rankin/Bass Productions in New York City under supervision of Arthur Rankin, Jr. and Jules Bass. The film's original working title was Frodo, The Hobbit II. It was written by Romeo Muller with Rankin doing the script, designs for the characters and storyboards. The original cast from the previous film returned to reprise the voices of the characters with new actors joining them.


Jackson followed up with The Two Towers and The Return of the King, and the entire trilogy was met with loud cheers, bundles of cash, and award ceremony recognition. Slightly more than decade later, the director returned to Middle-earth for The Hobbit, which was also turned into a trilogy (not without controversy). As the Lord of the Rings movie franchise reaches the ripe age of 20, how does every adaptation rank against the others?


The trio dive deep into this 1980 musical television film version of The Return of the King and decry the ugliness of all the characters (except Éowyn, who is super hot), note the ableism against Frodo masked under an awful folk tune, and ponder what it is about this franchise that keeps fans returning to these films time and time again. Okay, maybe not returning to this one specifically, but, yeah... Also, it finally happened, Lauren tells us how she recently dropped her first Lord of the Rings reference in real life! Are you happy now? She's very upset about this. 041b061a72


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