A map of Middle-earth discovered in a used copy of The Lord of the Rings that belonged to illustrator Pauline Baynes. The map includes hand-written annotations by J.R.R. Tolkien, which indicates that Hobbiton was at the same location as Oxford, where Tolkien was a don, and Minas Tirith may have been based on Ravenna, Italy. The map is only one of the items from Baynes’ personal collection now on sale (asking price £60,000). Other items include original art from The Chronicles of Narnia.
New Line Cinema and Peter Jackson have announced preliminary casting for their two-film adaptation of J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Hobbit. The title role of Bilbo Baggins will be played by Martin Freeman and the leader of the Dwarves, Thorin Oakenshield will be portrayed by Richard Armitage. The rest of the announced company of Dwarves include Aidan Turner (Kili), Rob Kazinsky (Fili), Graham McTavish (Dwalin), John Callen (Oin), Peter Hambleton (Gloin), Stephen Hunter (Bombur), and Mark Hadlow (Dori). Ian McKellan is expected to reprise his role as Gandalf and Andy Serkis is planning to do the motion capture for Gollum again.
The winners for the Premoetheus Award, which recognizes libertarian science fiction, have been announced. The awards will be presented at Anticipation, this year’s Worldcon, in Montreal.
- Novel: Little Brother, by Cory Doctorow
- Hall of Fame: The Lord of the Rings, by J.R.R. Tolkien