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A quick Q&A with Evangeline Lilly about the final Hobbit film!

2014-12-11 06:00

Cape Town – Evangelina Lilly, who plays Tauriel in the Hobbit films, sat down for a quick Q&A about the final installment of the trilogy.

Even though the character of Tauriel wasn’t in the original story, she has a huge impact in the movies.

I think that, in a way, she is in the original story too, because the Silvan Elves are; Tauriel is just not named.  Actually, my favorite part of the book—which is not in the movie—is when the Silvan Elves lure the Dwarves off the path through the forest of Mirkwood with their partying.  

How do you feel now that the journey is coming to an end with final film in The Hobbit trilogy is coming out?

I am so excited to see this film! And I know it’s going to be my favorite of the three, because it’s the one that bridges The Hobbit Trilogy with The Lord of the Rings Trilogy.  I just feel so lucky and fortunate to have played this character.

What will we see Tauriel go through in The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies?

Tauriel, who rebelled against her King in the second movie, will be even more relentless here in her fight against injustice.  In that sense, she will not succumb to his demands, but will continue to fly in the face of everything he stands for and even expects of her.  So, she is risking her life for what she believes to be right and for the greater good.

How do you think The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies will compare to the first two films in the Trilogy?

This movie is more about high stakes and a massive battle for peace in Middle-earth.  In the case of my character, we will see how her feelings drive her climatic action in The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies, which gave me some rich dramatic material to play with.
What was it like working with Aidan Turner, who plays Kili?

Aidan has a great sense of humour, which I love.  And have you heard him speak?  He has the most beautiful voice that I could fall asleep to every night!  He is a charming guy and a very good actor.  Luckily, even though there is a lot of moving around in these films, our characters also have the opportunity to sit down and have conversations. 

How was it to work with Orlando Bloom as Legolas?

Orlando is also a lot of fun!  He came from the tradition of The Lord of the Rings films of having a young group of British actors that were constantly joking around, and he brought that levity to this set.

What do you like the most about Tauriel?

I love Tauriel! In my mind, she is the quintessential strong female character because she represents strength and capability as much as she does vulnerability and compassion.  Tauriel is tough and can take an Orc’s head off with a sneeze, but, at the same time, she is graceful, caring, kind and generous, and, in a lot of ways, even naïve.  She is a great character!

Sometimes when men try to write good, strong female characters, what they end up writing is a woman that acts like a man, but that’s not the case of Tauriel.  She was really the creation of three different women— co-writers Philippa Boyens, Fran Walsh and myself—and director/co-writer Peter Jackson.  

What would you say you have in common with your character?

Well, I can certainly be very impulsive, and I also have a very fiery passion for injustice.  Nothing boils my blood and gets me out of bed like injustice.  And sometimes, in both our cases, that righteous anger can overpower our wisdom and sensibility and make us do rash things.

Are you involved in a lot of action in The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies?

Oh, yes, though I don’t get to see as much action as Legolas.  I can’t take that crown away from him!  Still, I think that for Tauriel, the focus is more on her emotions.  And I don’t have a problem with that because women have a stronger relation with their emotions.  But I also have my share of killing Orcs.  I vindicate myself in the Battle of the Five Armies.

How many of those stunts did you actually do yourself?

What would happen is that I would pretty much do all of it and so would my stunt double, and then they would keep the juiciest and best stuff.  So I was trained to do it all and actually did it, with the exception of the odd wire rig they wouldn’t let me attempt because they were scared I would get hurt.

The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit trilogies have been shot in New Zealand.  What can you say of your experience of living and working in that magical country?

I get emotional thinking about the takeaway of living and working in New Zealand.  It’s a place that has managed to hang on to a bygone time in regards to family, morals and nature.  It really has its priorities straight as a culture, and I feel like a lot of other places in the world could learn from how Kiwis live.  They are not caught up in the rat race of Western materialistic modern culture, and I was lucky to live the first year of my family being together—next to my partner and my brand new baby—in that bubble.  It’s incredibly symbiotic how that country has embraced these movies and vice-versa.

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