Josh Gad, an American actor whom most people recognize as the voice behind the comic relief character Olaf from Disney’s Frozen, recently made the news for being the one who managed to reunite the cast from The Lord of the Rings during the coronavirus-induced quarantine. Not only have the people of Peter Jackson’s iconic film series rarely met since filming The Return of the King in the early 2000s, but the ‘de-breaking of the fellowship’ also comes as an uplifting bit of news amidst trying times.
The members who attended the reunion (seen above) included Elijah Wood (Frodo), Sean Astin (Sam), Billy Boyd (Pippin), Dominic Monaghan (Merry) and Orlando Bloom (Legolas). Jackson, as well as Phillipa Boyens, who co-wrote the screenplay for the original trilogy, were also invited to the Zoom session. Last but not least, the 81-year-old Sir Ian McKellen stole the show by reciting some lines of Gandalf the wizard, a role which the actor has not channeled since finishing up The Battle of the Five Armies back in 2014.
McKellen had some interesting and incredibly touching things to say about the production of the now-legendary film franchise as well. “I remember when we all said goodbye, 30 years ago,” the celebrated actor said, “that we were all going to have regular reunions. Have you been having these reunions without me?” Despite his age, McKellen was one of the liveliest guests of the event, frequently drawing laughs with his comments. At one point, he called Bloom “Easy Boy Recliner,” a pet-name which you’ll have to watch the video to understand.
Of course, The Lords of the Rings isn’t the only beloved media franchise to have held a reunion during the pandemic. A few weeks ago, the cast of Dan Harmon’s iconic NBC sitcom Community also came together to do some table reads of their most popular episodes. In their case, Chevy Chase, who played fan favorite bigoted old man Pierce Hawthorne, was not present, owing to a fallout he had with the production way back when. Fortunately for Jackson’s team, though, no bad blood has accumulated between them over the years. Let’s hope it stays that way.