Remediating fantasy narratives for participatory fandom: Tolkien’s stories and their translations in films, video games, music and other products of the culture industries
Keywords:Lord of the Rings (LOTR), Tolkien, translation, transmediality, francize, media texts
The phenomenon of fantasy transmediality (Rebora 2016) has been discussed by many researchers and scholars during the last decade. The need for the creation of alluring cultural products in the highly competitive new media environment has led to synergies between many cultural industries and/or cultural producers, such as film, music, literature and videogame industries, etc. Many well-known and fan-developing narratives have been remediated – repackaged and redistributed – through the various media, answering to the contemporary nostalgia of pastness (Williams 2016), the cherishing of the familiar and intimate, as well as the need to further popularize “a pre-conceived merchandising industry” (Ball 2002), create new side-products for a fan community or even offer escapelands, which fantasy narratives succeed in creating. This paper will examine the translation and adaptation of Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings (LOTR) to different media and cultural industries, such as:- Peter Jackson’s films, - role-playing games (RPGs), - the music industry – with reference to well-known songs and bands.Through comparative analysis of certain segments of the LOTR industry market and comments made by fans on digital platforms, the paper underlines the basic story elements of the Tolkien universe, as adapted to each above-mentioned variant and examines the role of fans in the digital semiosphere.
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