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Last night, I dreamed I was sleeping. Thankfully, just before I woke up, I hit the ground.

—Ryan Peterson
(Twitter)

Synopsis: After having split up the fellowship, Aragorn, Gimli and Legolas attempt to rescue Merry and Pippin while Sam and Frodo head for Mordor.


Reaction: The attack at Helm's Deep is an instant classic. This may be the best of the series.


Personal Rating: 9/10

Select Cast and Crew
Peter Jackson => Director / Writer / Rohirrim Warrior
Fran Walsh => Writer
Philippa Boyens => Writer
Howard Shore => Composer
J.R.R. Tolkien => Novel
Alan Lee => Man of Rohan
Andy Serkis => Gollum
Bernard Hill => Théoden - King of Rohan
Billy Boyd => Peregrin 'Pippin' Took
Brad Dourif => Grima Wormtongue
Bruce Hopkins => Gamling
Cate Blanchett => Galadriel - Lady of Lórien
Christopher Lee => Saruman the White
Craig Parker => Haldir of Lórien
David Wenham => Faramir - Prince of Ithilien
Dominic Monaghan => Meriadoc 'Merry' Brandybuck
Elijah Wood => Frodo Baggins
Hugo Weaving => Elrond Half-elven
Ian McKellen => Gandalf the Grey
John Bach => Madril
John Rhys-Davies => Gimli, son of Glóin / Voice of Treebeard
Karl Urban => Éomer - Third Marshal of the Riddermark
Liv Tyler => Arwen Undómiel
Miranda Otto => Éowyn - the White Lady of Rohan
Orlando Bloom => Legolas Greenleaf
Paris Howe Strewe => Théodred - Prince of Rohan
Sean Astin => Samwise 'Sam' Gamgee
Viggo Mortensen => Aragorn II, son of Arathorn - the Dúnadan

Random Trivia For This Title:

  • The role of Eowyn, the White Lady of Rohan, was first offered to Irish actress Alison Doody in December 1999, who had to decline the part because she had just given birth to her second daughter. Miranda Otto then auditioned for the same role.
  • The first sequel to be nominated for an Academy Award for Best Picture when the original film did not win the award itself, and the third sequel to be nominated for Best Picture.
  • Andy Serkis said that he based Gollum's voice on the sound of a cat coughing up a hairball.
  • The Lembas Bread that Sam and Frodo eat in the beginning of the film was actually shortbread cookies made by the art department
  • Gollum's pupils signal his frame of mind. "Treacherous Gollum" has narrow pupils; "friendly Gollum" has slightly wider pupils. This is most obvious in the scene when the two sides of his personality struggle with each other.
  • The Battle of Helms Deep features hundreds of spears made of cardboard tubes so that none of the charging horses would be injured.
  • Elijah Wood's sister is one of the refugees in Helms Deep, as is [?] Henry Mortensen, Viggo Mortensen's son. Philippa Boyens' son [?] Callum Boyens is the boy who gives Aragorn his sword, but that isn't his voice in the final cut. Callum's voice had changed by the time it came to do the looping, so a different voice was cast.
  • The design for Gollum took over 100 maquette sculptures and over 1000 drawings to get right.
  • New Line wanted Peter Jackson to start the film with a prologue done by Cate Blanchett, something that Jackson didn't want to do. Ironically, a year earlier New Line had been opposed to opening The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring with a prologue narrated by Blanchett, something Jackson was in favor of.
  • The Gollum that is briefly glimpsed in The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring is an entirely different creation than the one that appears in this film. It was during the filming of the second movie that Peter Jackson realized that Andy Serkis' physical performance would have to be employed in the digital creation of Gollum. So Weta Digital had to alter the design of one of the lead characters in the film, scanning Serkis' face so that they would be able to incorporate some of his facial characteristics (the fact that Jackson had also filmed a flashback to be included in The Return of the King with Serkis playing the original Smeagal only cemented this decision). This ultimately meant, however, that Weta Digital had only 2-1/2 months to redo two years' work. Serkis himself thought that the final result looked like a combination of his father and his newborn baby.