The Hobbit: the Desolation of
Smaug Chronicles: Art & Design is the latest instalment of
behind-the-scenes art books (for want of a better description) to accompany the release of
The Hobbit films.
For anyone with more than a passing interest in the designs and concepts
in the films, this is a book to get. As with the two preceding companion books (for The
Hobbit: an Unexpected Journey) the art and design concepts are broken out in
to chapters covering significant characters and/or scenes.
Daniel Falconer is doing an excellent job with this series; providing a
window into the little known world of cinematic actor-image dressing and stage scene
development that is needed to allow the viewing audience to believe the world of the film
is real. I am eagerly anticipating the next book in this beautifully illustrated and
assembled series. This is a coffee table book that needs to be shown off but should be
kept well clear of potential coffee spills.
This book details the meticulous lengths the production team and craftsmen
went to in order to tell the story of The Desolation of Smaug. The
creation of various environments, cultures, creatures, and artefacts, like Beorns
home, the Woodland Realms, and Azog and the Orcs, are explored, telling us why it was
envisioned like that and how the effects were achieved.
This is a wonderful coffee table book with comprehensive documentation of
the incredibly detailed process involved in making this movie. There are thousands of
stunning images of the conceptual art involved and photographs supplied by cast and crew.
An introduction by the concept art director Alan Lee and foreword by the films set
decorator Ra Vincent are included, along with a fold-out portrait of the Mater of
Lake-town. Played by Stephen Fry, this I exactly as he appears in the film and a feature
that is unique to the book.