Silmarillion Film Project, Season 1
Session 1-1: Plot Overview
We will begin by discussing the overall plot of the first season and the major events that we want to occur during the season, including the Music of the Ainur, creation of Arda, the making of the Two Lamps, and the arrival of the Valar.
Session 1-2: Narrative Overview
We continue our discussion about the overall narrative of Season 1, as well as focus on the elements of the frame story that will encompass the show.
Session 1-3: The Ainulindalë (Pilot Episode)
It’s time to discuss the Music of the Ainur, one of the most thought-provoking and beautiful stories Tolkien wrote. This is a central core concept that, while it’s detached from the “main” story of The Silmarillion, it’s always there in the background.
Session 1-4: Episode 2 – From Chaos to Harmony
Today we are figuring out the content of the frame story and the Silmarillion story for episode 2 and how to tie it all together.
Session 1-5: Episode 3 – He Who Shall Not Be Named Morgoth
We continue to discuss central themes of the season, in particular focusing on Melkor – including what the heck to call him (as well as others who experience name changes in The Silmarillion, like Sauron).
Session 1-6: Episode 4 – Yay Melkor!!
In the fourth episode of Season 1, we determine how Melkor meets the other Valar and focus on the end of the Ainulindalë and Iluvatar’s conversation with Ulmo.
Session 1-7: Episode 5 – Creating the Lamps, Distressing the Damsel
In Episode 5, we discuss the decision to create the lamps and the introduction of Tulkas
Session 1-8: Episode 6 – Murder of the Lamps
After wrapping up some loose ends from the previous session, we shape episode 6 into something of a “whodunit” murder mystery, with the victims being the Lamps of the Valar.
Session 1-9: Episode 7 – Finally, Something For The Fëanturi To Do!
In today’s session, we come up with a new tagline for the SilmFilm Project: “It’s better than Jackson could have come up with.” Also, we talk about the establishment of Valinor and provide a view of the Valar settling into their new homes.
Session 1-10: Episode 8 – The Two Trees (Aftermath)
In the eighth episode of Season 1, we focus on the Two Trees, showing how they help to beautify Valinor – and instill jealousy and devious plans in Melkor.
Session 1-11: Episode 9 – The Fall of the House of Ainur (sort of), Part the First
In Episode 9, we begin to look at the downfall of various Ainur, setting the stage for the three rebellions that happen over the rest of the season: Aulë’s rebellion, Mairon’s (Sauron’s) rebellion, and Ossë’s rebellion.
Session 1-12: Episode 10 – Fall of the House of Ainur (Part the Second)
Subtitle: If you have a Balrog, you don’t need a cat. In which we start to link together all of the subplots and develop the first multi-episode story arc.
Session 1-13: Episode 11 – Aulë and the Dwarves
In this episode, we explore why Aulë does what he does, showing parallels with Melkor and planting the seeds of impatience for the Coming of the Children of Iluvatar amongst the Valar.
Session 1-14: Episode 12 – Can’t Kick the Orc-Can Anymore
We’ve gone too long without discussing the Mûmakil in the room: those darn orcs. In this session, we stop kicking that tin ration packaging down the road and deal with the inevitable.
Session 1-15: Episode 13 – The War to Begin All Wars
In the 2-hour season finale, the culmination of the strife amongst the Valar comes to a head with three councils, two summonings, and an epic battle that will establish the Platonic ideal for all future battles.
Session 1-16: Casting
Now that we’ve mapped out the characters, plot and action of the 13-episode first season, we get to decide who we’d like to see play the parts! This casting call includes a discussion forum component, so be sure to join in the fun!
Session 1-17: Envisioning Arda – Sets/Locations
Following up on our casting conversation, this time we’re talking about how we want things to look. What type of forests should fill Valinor? What architecture styles should we use for the Valar (and the elves who copy them)? What other visual considerations do we need to make?
Session 1-18: Casting Poll Results and Costuming
We review the results of our casting poll from Session 16 and discuss what we’d like to see our newly cast … uh, cast … wear.
Session 1-19: Music
Joining us for a discussion of the musical score is John DiBartolo of the Lonely Mountain Band. We also will listen to clips of proposed character themes from composer Philip Menzies.
Session 1-20: Script Outlines
We bring on some additional panelists this week to discuss script outlines and fill in the holes left in our episodic discussions. Guest panelists include Karita Alexander, Brian Fattorini, Nick Palazzo, and Marie Prosser.
Image: The Light of Valinor on the Western Sea (2004), by Ted Nasmith (used with permission)