Robert Aramyo, the actor behind The Rings Of Power‘s resident well-coiffed elf hottie Elrond has given some behind-the-hobbit-hole tea about how they film the height differences between dwarves and elves. Movie magic or real magic, that is the question.
Every time I’ve watched The Lord of the Rings flicks — and now every time I tune into an ep of The Rings of Power — I am overcome by this very question.
Well, in an interview with Vulture, Aramayo gave a sneaky hint into what goes on behind the scenes.
Vulture asked him about the experience of acting in a set that is “specifically designed to make you feel too large to fit in”.
Elrond has spent a fair chunk of time hanging out in the Dwarven kingdom Khazad-dûm, a place I’d love to live if it weren’t for the constant fear of hitting my head.
We see a number of scenes between Elrond and dwarf Prince Durin (Owain Arthur).
“[Arthur] would work with background actors who were around to make him look the same size as the dwarves around him,” Aramayo explained.
“I would work with background actors who were around to make me look bigger than the dwarves around me.”
Interesting, very interesting.
According to Screen Rant, this is pretty similar to the vibe Peter Jackson went for in Lord of the Rings trilogy, which relied on a ton of forced perspective: cleverly positioning different actors to emphasise height differences, or using props in a range of sizes.
The films also had moving sets that worked with the specific camera angles needed to capture those perspectives.
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Aramayo also touched on a specific scene between Elrond and Durin which saw them in a rock-breaking competition.
“In that rock-breaking sequence for example, Owain is an enigmatic and incredible man to be around so when he’s breaking rocks, everyone was really onboard with him doing it and cheering him on like they were in a beer hall,” he said.
“Then the energy was very different with a whole bunch of new people who came in for my coverage and didn’t like me as much.
“So sometimes it was really useful for the acting.”
I just got a heinous flashback to my Year 9 drama teacher screaming, “LAYERS, GIRLS!” at us during a game of Space Jump. I’m glad to know it’s the same on professional sets too.
You simply have to love the good old fashioned movie magic.