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Forging of The Fellowship

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Alan Perry, Michael Perry & Dave Thomas

Alan and Michael Perry have been heavily involved in every The Lord of The Rings project that Games Workshop has undertaken, and The Fellowship of The Ring is no exception. Between them, they have sculpted the Dúnedain Rangers, new Ringwraiths, Gildor, and Gandalf the Grey on horseback. They have also worked on the plastic Cave Troll and the Fellowship that comes with the Mines of Moria boxed set.

Gildor Inglorion - click to enlarge
Gildor Inglorion
Click to enlarge
"Gildor (shown right) is really the first Elf I have worked on for The Lord of The Rings," Alan points out. "At least, the first that isn't Legolas."Gildor Inglorion is one of the Elves that the Hobbits meet as they are fleeing the Black Riders on their way to Bree. He's a character that doesn't appear in the movie, and thus, his appearance needs to be distinct from that of the Elves of the film but still retain the distinctive feel of Middle-earth. "He's got dagging on the bottom of his tunic," Alan explains. "It's a very traditional fantasy image, borrowed from a 14th century historical archetype, and very appropriate for an Elf like Gildor. He has firm, pleasant facial features and a hairstyle that is typically Elven."

A Dúnedain Ranger - click to enlarge
A Dúnedain Ranger
Click to enlarge
Ringwraith - click to enlarge
Click to enlarge
The Dúnedain Rangers (shown left) are another thing familiar to readers of the novels. Although their actions are only alluded to in the text, their influence is clear. "These Men are the thin green line around the Shire," Michael tells us. "Each one looks like an individual, with a very 'woodland' theme – Men meet Elves! They have the same quivers as the Rangers of the North (sculpted by Gary Morley), which helps with the continuity, and each one has an action-packed pose. We wanted to make them look like 'hit-and-run' troops."

When it came to adding four more Nazgûl to the existing Ringwraiths (shown above left), the Perrys turned to one of the pivotal scenes from The Fellowship film. "There was lots of watching the attack at Weathertop, looking at the poses on the Ringwraiths. Quite a few hours, just on that one scene" – sounds like great work if you can get it. "They had to look great, be different from the existing five Ringwraith models, and still work in the mould."

Dave Thomas’s greens and the finished models for some of the Fellowship - click to enlarge
Dave Thomas's greens and
the finished models for some of the Fellowship.
Click to enlarge.
Dave Thomas is best known for his work on miniatures for Warhammer 40,000 including Marneus Calgar and the Space Marine Command squad. He was drafted with Juan Diaz to sculpt a new boxed set featuring the Fellowship. "The brief we were given was 'Sculpt the Fellowship in all-action poses.' They needed to be in positions and carrying weapon options that didn't already exist as models," Dave recalls. "Juan and I made the choice as to who sculpted what. He wanted to do Legolas and Gimli, so I let him have those along with Merry and Pippin. That meant I got Gandalf, Boromir, Aragorn, Frodo, and Sam."

"Each of the models, with the exception of Gandalf, is decked out how they were at Amon Hen. We both used the Amon Hen scene from the film as our cue and looked for distinctive images. Frodo is running away from Boromir and looks over his shoulder as he flees. He's running scared. Sam is also running, chasing after 'Mister Frodo' toward the boat. He's looking very serious, just stomping along! Boromir is running to rescue Merry and Pippin, just like he does in the film, where he takes out the Uruk-hai with the two-handed axe. Aragorn? He's the odd one out really, since he's wearing Boromir's bracers. So it's obviously after Boromir has died, when they're getting ready to chase after the Uruk-hai."

Frodo, Legolas & Gimli - click to enlarge
Merry, Pippin & Sam - click to enlarge
"The theme of the set is the breaking of the Fellowship, which really takes place at Amon Hen, but we really had to include Gandalf," Dave adds. "Gandalf is modelled to represent him as he was when he left the Fellowship at Khazad-dûm."

The other models in the set are sculpted by Juan Diaz and all continue the theme of motion and action that Dave mentioned. Legolas really looks like he is hacking his way through the Uruks with his knives, while Gimli is about to deliver a throwing axe to an unfortunate victim. Merry and Pippin look set to pounce one of the Uruks attacking Boromir."

It certainly wasn't easy for us," Dave points out. "With Warhammer 40,000 and Warhammer, we have a different set of restrictions. Models for The Lord of The Rings need to be made to a smaller, more realistic scale than other Citadel miniatures, and they need to meet external approval too. It's a very different process, and it gives us very different challenges."

Looking at the pictures of the finished miniatures, I'm sure you'll agree those challenges have been well met.

Next: Telling The Story
Previous: Introduction

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Aragorn Painted - click to enlarge Aragorn Green - click to enlarge Boromir Green - click to enlarge Boromir Painted - click to enlarge Gandalf Green - click to enlarge Gandalf Painted - click to enlarge Frodo - click to enlarge Legolas - click to enlarge Gimli - click to enlarge Merry - click to enlarge Pippin - click to enlarge Sam - click to enlarge

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