Suosikki Magazine Interview with Elijah Wood
-Typed up by Pamela-
Elijah Wood, 21, plays the lead character Frodo Baggins in the Lord of the rings-movies. Trilogyís second part, the two towers hits the big screen on 18th of December. Elijahís big success started last year with the coming of the first LOTR movie, the fellowship of the ring. Elijah Wood has acted since he was little. He has played teenroles before, but with LOTR his characters have come more mature. Still back in autumn there were rumors of him dating Franka Potente, but now the relationship has been thought to end. The couple met on the set of Try 17.
How did you life change after the making of The Lord of the rings?
-My life hasnít changed much. I get recognized everywhere. Before making the trilogy I didnít understand, how huge fame can become. But I still can handle my fame, because my personal life is pretty much the same as it was before the LOTR.
What kind of positive influences has the LOTR had to you?
-The movie has been so popular and so loved that people in the showbusiness has started to take me more seriously then before. I get offered more challenging roles.
What do you think about tabloids?
-I donít like the way the tabloids write and tell about people. Everone should have the right to some kind of privacy. -At times Iím shocked when people sell their stories to the magazines, because then they just give their whole life to be judgeg by the magazines. After youíve given the little finger, theyíll take your whole hand. (I think thatís actually a Finnish saying, but I canít remember the english version for it..hope you understand it anyways..) -Luckily my lifestyle is peaceful enough so that they canít rip a huge headline out of it.
Do you get depressed by rumours?
-I donít like it when they make up weird stories about me. But actually the whole thing is quite silly and stupid. Itís strange how poeple are so interested of the lives of others. For example, when Brad Pitt and Gwyneth Paltrow broke up, they told about it in every magazine, even in the evening news. It was unbelievable, but thatís just the way this business is.
What is the most memorable thing that has to do with your fans?
-My fans have been very polite. On the street they call me Frodo and ask for an autograph. Part of them has seen the LOTR DVD several times and they tell me how much theyíve liked it. I was talking with my friend and he/she (itís hard to say which gender theyíre talking about because in Finnish thereís no difference in the word wheter it is a boy or girl.) thinks itís a big thing if you get recognized at the streets. -I donít think about it a lot, though. I still go shopping as I used to.
Has anybody said anything bad about the Fellowship of the ring?
-Weíve been very lucky. The people who have liked the books have liked the movie too. Even though the movie isnít identical with the book-some parts have been added and some parts have been cut off- fans have survived the worst shock.
You were on the Osbournes. How did you get to know them?
-My sister knows Jack and Kelly and so through her I met them.
Are they really as strange as they seem on TV ?
-Osbournes are a funny and crazy family. I admire Sharon, sheís an amazing mom. And Ozzy is a loving and a gentle man. Kelly and Jack are crazy, like the whole family, but in a nice way. They [the family] are really close and truly care about each other.
Could you make a similar show?
-No. I think itís funny and sad, how many people would want to make their own TV-show.
Have you seen Anna Nicole Smithís show?
-No, and I donít want to. The whole scene is absurd. Still, I wouldnít like to take the credit away from the Osbourne family for this idea, because it is their thing. Before them, nobody had documented a familyís life like that. -But people who imitate the Osbournes, do it just to get money and fame fast. Itís sad. People should live their own lives and you can not do it in front of tv-cameras. I think that the Osbourne-imitators will regret their doings after few years.
Has being a child actor helped you?
-Iíve been in the showbusiness for years and it had helped me to deal with all of this hassle. Iíve been an actor for so many years that the audience and the showbusiness people have gotten to know me little by little. -LOTR was my big breakthrough. If it had been my first movie, I wouldíve had more difficulties facing fame. Now I know who I am and the fame doesnít feel so wild.
How have you managed to keep a straight head?
-I started acting when I was 8. My mother raised me to be humane and realistic. She tried not to stress over the changes and schedules of the showbusiness and always think of my best. My family has always supported me. My upbringing has affected a lot to what Iím now.
Is it hard to stay humble, when they praise you all the time?
-Itís not hard at all. Growing up, you notice that the praising disappears fast. Today everybody loves you, but tomorrow nobody will remember you. More important then the praises is to appreciate your own work and the work of people close to you.
Are you afraid that everything might be different tomorrow?
-No. And if that happens, Iíd o something else. I think Iíd find myself doing something with music, because I love music.
What kind of music do you listen to?
-The latest album by Queens of Stone Age is propably the best rock album this year. But I listen to all kinds of music.
Have you been to a Queens of Stone Age concert?
-I saw the band 3 years ago, when it was the warm up for Smashing Pumpkins. The band was already good, when theyíre first album came out.
Youíve said that the hobbits came close and you hanged out a lot. Do you still see each other?
-Yes, I was just recently down in Mexico, where Billy Boyd is shooting the new Peter Weird movie. Russell Crowe is in it too. Actually I went to Mexico two times. First time I was there with my New zealander-friends and the second time I was there to Billyís birthday. We surfed a lot then. -Iím in close contact with the other hobbits. They are like brothers to me, because weíve experienced unique situations together both good and bad. Sean Astin is really close to me, because we worked together the most.
Was there any scramble around you when you were all out together?
-No. In Mexico almost no one recognized us. We didnít cause a riot.
So hobbits arenít the next Leonardo DiCaprio-group?
-No way. We spent the most of the time at somebodyís home and enjoy eachothers company.
What kind of things did you learn from Frodo?
-Hobbits have good values, like appreciating life and friends and also enjoying the simple things of life without constant stress about the outside world. At times people lose the fun of life by worrying too much. People should learn carefreeness from the hobbits.
What was it like to play Frodo?
-Challenging, because the character changes in every part of the trilogy. As an actor playing Frodo it was a wonderful chance to get into all the sides of the character, both physical and mental.
Was it lonely shooting the third part of the trilogy?
-Not entirely, because I spent a lot of time with Sean. It was great brotherly time. We had to trust eachother to be able to do difficult scenes. The third part was very physical, we had to climb on mountains and fall off them. -I havenít seen most of the second part, because I concentrated on Frodoís part. Even though I had read the whole script, I got into the adventures of Frodo so much that I asked the others later , what happens in the movie.
After the LOTR-trilogy, youíve done other movies too. Are you relieved that people donít identify you only as Frodo?
-Many people are wondering if Iíll get caught by the Frodo-character even after the LOTR, but I believe in the result of work. When I do different characters in different movies, people will let go of the Frodo-image.