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Figwit

AKA as the Rhymenoscerous, The Video Kid, Figwit and is one gazillionth of The Wellington Ukulele Orchestra. Yuss him and maybe some invisible people also...

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Figwit

Postby indigo_jones » Thu Oct 06, 2005 4:21 pm

I've seen all the LotR films, but I'm not a huge fan, so I don't go all crazy about the stuff and didn't know about the whole Figwit fandom until now. (Anyway, I much prefer him with the curly hair.)

Still, I've heard about this documentary that some of his friends did and I'm curious if anything ever became of it. I'm a sucker for documentaries, and I'd probably get a kick out of this one, even though I understand he isn't interviewed directly about it.
"It was a hilarious, hilarious moment in a very bleak, bleak time of my life."

Happiness is Bret-Shaped.

"The forecast for Jemaine today is clean-shaven with a chance of stubble. Scattered stubble throughout the week, resulting in a 60% chance of beard early next week." - mohumbhai mania
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Postby djdeathskiss » Thu Oct 06, 2005 4:55 pm

I remember (back in the ol' days) on TORn when the whole 'Figwit' thing happened:

Frodo Is Great..Who Is That?!?

:lol:

Now whenever I see 'Return of the King' with a large group of friends, Bret always gets a little cheer and applause.
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Re: Figwit

Postby Sherry » Thu Oct 06, 2005 5:45 pm

indigo_jones wrote:I've seen all the LotR films, but I'm not a huge fan, so I don't go all crazy about the stuff and didn't know about the whole Figwit fandom until now. (Anyway, I much prefer him with the curly hair.)

Still, I've heard about this documentary that some of his friends did and I'm curious if anything ever became of it. I'm a sucker for documentaries, and I'd probably get a kick out of this one, even though I understand he isn't interviewed directly about it.


O dear :shock:

Actually all you want to know about Figwit and the docu is on Figwit Lives somewhere.

Ummmm *panics*

I can write about it now but have pretty much never spoken about it publicly on forums or anything. Only a few friends and my BF really know anything about it and some of them were right there through the Figwit thing with me. Not that I am embarrassed or anything, just I closed the door on it all ages back. And I find it very hard to want to go back. It had its time for me. It was a bizzare situation and one I don't know I really want to rehash often or re live. I made some good friends and had a great deal of fun. I'm happy I was there for it.

A docu was filmed. I know because I was one of those involved. It was also edited and released at a few film festivals in NZ. And maybe other festivals. Its not available to view otherwise though.

The guy who did most of the filming editing etc, Stan Alley, was great. It was a pleasure to meet him. Bret was very cool about it all also. Luckily for us, he happened to be a pretty talented guy. Kind of handy methinks. The power of the internet and creating the most insane fandom for an extra ever. I know Elijah Wood, Billy Boyd, Dominic Monaghan, Ian McKellen, Orlando Bloom and even Peter Jackson himself all had a say on film for it. Bret's friends and people around him were interviewed. He plays a part in it for sure. DUH and I were interviewed at length and also filmed meeting Bret etc. The end result I have always preferred to not see. I know I am hardly in it (at my own request :P)

If anyone here is wondering how I helped create Figwit and am not a 15 year old screaming fangirl, well, thats the beauty of it. Something that started between two friends in cyberspace was all. I kind of take pride in that we were as far removed from screaming fangirls as you could get. And no offense was intended to actual dung beetles, in my writing, ever :P

What was the joke again and who was it really on? 8)
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Postby indigo_jones » Sun Oct 09, 2005 12:18 am

FYI, LOTR is on tonight on Starz (I think) at 9 p.m. EST. It's the one with verbal elfin goodness.
"It was a hilarious, hilarious moment in a very bleak, bleak time of my life."

Happiness is Bret-Shaped.

"The forecast for Jemaine today is clean-shaven with a chance of stubble. Scattered stubble throughout the week, resulting in a 60% chance of beard early next week." - mohumbhai mania
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Re: Figwit

Postby Sherry » Wed Oct 12, 2005 7:25 pm

indigo_jones wrote:Still, I've heard about this documentary that some of his friends did and I'm curious if anything ever became of it. I'm a sucker for documentaries, and I'd probably get a kick out of this one, even though I understand he isn't interviewed directly about it.


Here is a write up I found on it. I've not read this since it was first put online. Hoping it might shed more light for you :)

"We Stuck Pointy Ears On and Hoped For The Best"
I'm catsitting for some friends who are off freezing in Christchurch for a week. They have a little silver Abysinnian who is so insanely affectionate he climbed on my shoulder and licked my head. They also have huge amounts of books, so I've borrowed Fat Wars, Lily Burana's Strip City, and Alain de Botton's Status Anxiety.

And today I saw the LOTR fan documentary, "Frodo is Great...Who Is That?"

This documentary was done with hip-indie flair. Loosely, it follows Brett McKenzie, the LOTR extra catapulted to fame as Figwit, as his fellow cast members, famous and not famous, observe his phenomenon, and what happens when he goes to the Edinburgh Festival to promote his comedy troupe "Flight of the Conchords" and meet up with some Figwit fans.

Brett himself remains a bit of a mystery, observed with both reserve and tongue in cheek, even as Ian McKellan notes remembering Brett with evident relish and his fellow elf extras shake their heads in amazement. The happy-to-mug-for-camera triumverate of Billy, Elijah, and Dom were commenting, Dom saying something along the lines of, "You work so hard to be an actor and then this sort of thing happens - to somebody else!" Barrie Osborne seemed happy at the extra ka-ching and buzz Figwit had generated and was interviewed at length. When Orlando Bloom was told some said Figwit was "the thinking woman's Legolas," he replied, laughing, "I hope the thinking women enjoy him!" Peter Jackson had the completely deadpan air of a British humorist blended with an introvert who's been asked to be a People Person one too many times. He accused Figwit of ringlust and villany and then said, "The elves didn't really do it for me. We stuck pointy ears on these guys and hoped for the best. The girls seem to like them." His bandmates agreed, noting that at one concert the women had voted Brett the sexiest of everyone on stage - seeing his rather appealing bandmates, this is startling! "They voted Brett the sexiest and we were like, what, this little pixie guy?"

The fans come across very well, too, with all the Figwit devotees having a sense of humor and being charming and balanced, even when the embarrasing subject of elf porn is brought up (illustrated by a demure piece of Earendil/some redheaded dame fan art, of all things.) Extensive shots from fan web sites and pieces of fan art were incorporated into the film without being dull. Is this the future of web site documentaries? We will see. The most awkward sequence was Brett's visit to the Scottish Fellowship; it was there that the fans had the dreamy nerdiness that makes some people itch. Perhaps it was because Brett's host had almost wallpapered her living room in LOTR movie materials and was wearing elf ears. Brett is shown handling these people gently and dealing graciously overall with his somewhat awkward fame, but I've heard through the local grapevine that he's very shy and antsy when he encounters this sort of thing in Wellington, where he lives.

Overall, it was very charming - another LOTR documentary that it's a pity isn't more widely available. (Also, it turned out that the Black Seeds were playing at the Wellington ROTK premiere and I was so sunbaked and tired at that point that I wasn't paying any attention.)

The directors were there, again (go New Zealand film festival!) and answered questions. They got their entree to meet all these people because they had worked on the techincal side of the movie. There aren't any plans to take the movie to DVD immediately; the film is going to other film festivals around the world, so stay tuned; and, most interesting of all, they're talking about showing the film on TV here in NZ.

Source of article
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Postby indigo_jones » Wed Oct 12, 2005 8:06 pm

Thank you, Sherry!
"It was a hilarious, hilarious moment in a very bleak, bleak time of my life."

Happiness is Bret-Shaped.

"The forecast for Jemaine today is clean-shaven with a chance of stubble. Scattered stubble throughout the week, resulting in a 60% chance of beard early next week." - mohumbhai mania
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Postby indigo_jones » Sat Oct 15, 2005 2:57 am

Sherry, out of curiosity, since I know little about the whole Figwit phenomenon, how on earth did you even find out it was Bret in the film?
"It was a hilarious, hilarious moment in a very bleak, bleak time of my life."

Happiness is Bret-Shaped.

"The forecast for Jemaine today is clean-shaven with a chance of stubble. Scattered stubble throughout the week, resulting in a 60% chance of beard early next week." - mohumbhai mania
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Postby Sherry » Sat Oct 15, 2005 11:25 am

indigo_jones wrote:Sherry, out of curiosity, since I know little about the whole Figwit phenomenon, how on earth did you even find out it was Bret in the film?


We didn't. Not a clue who he was. He was never listed in the credits or anything. The site was online a little while and we were blissfully unware as to *who* Figwit was. It was a running joke between us about it all. Then the site got a mention on the front page of TheOneRing.net (huge LOTR/Tolkien/movie fansite) and Figwit went from being a laugh between friends on a forum and so on to global internet celeb extra. Bigger than Boba Fett. And with no audible lines to his name :shock:

From there a paper or something in New Zealand tracked him down and named him for us IIRC. Ran an article on it all. As did many other news sites. And also IIRC Bret told us that he first heard about it when at a party and some mates of his told him he had to come see this website about him. That was the first he knew about it, poor bloke :shock:

Can you imagine what went through his head. DUH and I were somewhat stunned at all the interest to say the least. Then the world got in on Figwit and did the rest.
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Postby indigo_jones » Sat Oct 15, 2005 2:33 pm

And also IIRC Bret told us that he first heard about it when at a party and some mates of his told him he had to come see this website about him. That was the first he knew about it, poor bloke

I can imagine that must have been quite a surprise for him!

Thank you for the background. I was wondering if you had some super sleuthing abilities or what. It's amazing what can happen with the Internet now. I used to do a fan site for an Italian soccer player and it turns out my site was shown/mentioned on an Italian tv show about the player. I had no idea until an Italian friend happened to see it.
"It was a hilarious, hilarious moment in a very bleak, bleak time of my life."

Happiness is Bret-Shaped.

"The forecast for Jemaine today is clean-shaven with a chance of stubble. Scattered stubble throughout the week, resulting in a 60% chance of beard early next week." - mohumbhai mania
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Postby Sherry » Sat Oct 15, 2005 2:59 pm

indigo_jones wrote:
I can imagine that must have been quite a surprise for him!

Thank you for the background. I was wondering if you had some super sleuthing abilities or what. It's amazing what can happen with the Internet now. I used to do a fan site for an Italian soccer player and it turns out my site was shown/mentioned on an Italian tv show about the player. I had no idea until an Italian friend happened to see it.


The internet is an amazing thing. I've kind of gotten into it in a fairly big way, but the tech side baffles me. Its been a way to shrink the world for sure.
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Postby Amaria » Sun Oct 16, 2005 8:27 pm

The Figwit phenomenon really is quite an amazing thing, isn't it? Funny how one or two fans can give an extra superstardom.

But right. Fellow Figwit fan here, almost from day one. :D
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Postby indigo_jones » Mon Oct 17, 2005 9:40 pm

As if I didn't already have a huge crush on Bret, I was just listening to some old radio interview and at the end he says, "My name is Figwit the Elf. You killed my father. Prepare to die."

I just about died laughing. My friends and I used to say that line to each other all the time (well, without the Figwit bit, obviously, since this was back in 1988 or so). My crush is complete!
"It was a hilarious, hilarious moment in a very bleak, bleak time of my life."

Happiness is Bret-Shaped.

"The forecast for Jemaine today is clean-shaven with a chance of stubble. Scattered stubble throughout the week, resulting in a 60% chance of beard early next week." - mohumbhai mania
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Postby Sherry » Mon Oct 17, 2005 10:54 pm

indigo_jones wrote:As if I didn't already have a huge crush on Bret, I was just listening to some old radio interview and at the end he says, "My name is Figwit the Elf. You killed my father. Prepare to die."

I just about died laughing. My friends and I used to say that line to each other all the time (well, without the Figwit bit, obviously, since this was back in 1988 or so). My crush is complete!


Yeah, but you know the gag behind the gag there though right?

He (Bret) played an elf, (named Figwit by fans) and appeared in FOTR at the Council of Elrond. His father (yes his father IRL) Peter McKenzie played Elendil in the same film. There was a whole gag about Figwit being the true heir of Elendil etc and related to Aragorn. Mr McKenzie senior was very gracious and enjoyed the humour that people found with Figwit. Got behind it all and laughed with us.

Erm.

And, as an extra bit, Bret's brother also appeared in the Council of Elrond scene. As funnily enough, an elf.
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Postby indigo_jones » Mon Oct 17, 2005 10:57 pm

I've been learning more about the whole Figwit phenomenon and came across the info about the other family members the other week. So yes, I actually did get the joke behind the joke. Which made it all that much funnier.

But thank you for sharing and making sure I knew, o wise teacher! :prayer: Seriously, thanks for sharing your knowledge.
"It was a hilarious, hilarious moment in a very bleak, bleak time of my life."

Happiness is Bret-Shaped.

"The forecast for Jemaine today is clean-shaven with a chance of stubble. Scattered stubble throughout the week, resulting in a 60% chance of beard early next week." - mohumbhai mania
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Postby Sherry » Mon Oct 17, 2005 11:03 pm

indigo_jones wrote:But thank you for sharing and making sure I knew, o wise teacher! :prayer: Seriously, thanks for sharing your knowledge.


I excel in all things Figwit and Conchords. Now if only I could apply myself to subjects that would actually get me ahead in the world a little, as much as I can to those :P Mind you, saying that, being part of the whole Figwit thing actually got me bonus points during a job interview ages back :lol:
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