The beauty of Rivendell shimmered in the background.
The noble elf looked over the ragtaggle group set to accompany Frodo on his epic quest to deliver the One Ring to the fires of Mount Doom.
“Nine companions,” he says, smiling a little.
“So be it. You shall be the Super Fighty Men on Skateboards.”
“Great,” says one of the comedy hobbits, hilariously, “where are we going, homeboys?”
Director Peter Jackson leapt from his chair and shouted ‘cut.’
He couldn’t be happier, Lord of the Rings: The Super Fighty Men on Skateboards was going to defy all expectations and be a smash.
“I still maintain Super Fighty Men on Skateboards is a better name than Fellowship of the Ring,” said Jackson in a 2006 Wogan interview.
“It was the first thing that just leapt out at [writing partner] Fran and I as not really working.
“Don’t forget, we started writing the script in 1997, it was a world of PlayStations, Spice Girls, and Tamagotichis.
“It was the future, and we needed our Lord of the Rings to reflect that.”
In an attempt to marry the high fantasy of Lord of the Rings with more modern sensibilities Jackson made the bold decision to put the famed Fellowship of the Ring on skateboards, change their name to the Super Fighty Men and make one of the comedy hobbits a rapper.
“It was great, we made Lord of the Rings relevant to the kids again.”
There was a skateboard park in Hobbiton, the Orcs all listened to rock/rap bands, and Gandalf wore a global hypercolour t-shirt.
“We had a load of merchandise in place, there were Super Fighty Men on Skateboards baseball caps, Super Fighty Men on Skateboards action figures, Super Fighty Men on Skateboards skateboards.
“It would have been incredible.”
Sadly though, at the last minute, he was forced to change everything.
“The Tolkien Estate. Man, I hate those guys. They didn’t understand what we could have had with the Super Fighty Men.”
JRR Tolkien’s estate were fiercely protective of his legacy and so they insisted that Frodo and his friends were named Fellowship of the Ring, as specified in the book.
The merchandising was scrapped and Jackson was forced to reshoot.
“The film still came out really well, but to cut the Super Fighty Men skateboarding into battle against the orc army broke my heart.”
However, Jackson recently revealed that there is still a reference to the Super Fighty Men in the film.
“The titles go on for twenty minutes,” he explained.
“I knew the Tolkien Estate would never watch all of the them, so go watch it. 16 minutes in, I put in the original shot of Gandalf falling into the abyss to battle the Balrog.
“Close up on Ian and he says ‘Skate, you Super Fighty Men fools.’