Strange Set Job! Apply Hair to Hobbit Feet

by Jackie Willis 9:27 AM PDT, October 18, 2012
Photo: The Hollywood Reporter

The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey film cost an estimated $315 million to make, and with such a blockbuster undertaking comes lots of detail ... hairy details. Director Peter Jackson tells The Hollywood Reporter that there were crew members on set whose sole jobs were to glue hair on the hobbit's feet.

"More daunting was the multitude of characters in the book -- no fewer than 13 dwarves, who had to be distinguishable to audiences even at a distance -- as they join forces with Bilbo and the wizard Gandalf," Jackson, who directed the Lord of the Rings trilogy, says of bringing J.R.R. Tolkien's beloved book to the big screen. "A big part of the solution was not a new computer trick but hair -- lots of it. All the dwarves wear wigs made of human hair imported from Russia, which has the right texture for characters that have a Northern European look. For the dwarves alone, there were six wigs and eight beards each."

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Now times that by all the dwarf actors, stunt doubles and stand-ins on set. That's a lot of hair!

Makeup and hair designer Peter King tells THR, "I've never done such a hairy movie. Everywhere you look, there are tables and racks of wigs and beards." But once again -- the hair. There are people in the crew whose only job was to apply hair to hobbit feet.

The hairy Hobbit film hits theaters Dec. 14.