(NB. not everything referred to in the past tense is completed; I’m just used to writing that way.)
Overture of themes, courtesy youtube user saysnobody.
Custom designed & animated OT.com vanity plate by me. I’ll make this available to anyone else who wants it, of course, in full 1080p. Original 1950s Warner Bros. fanfare and MGM lion roar with current animated logos.
Replaced with a short (<1min) montage of the Shire and Bag End, with a few lines of narration taken from the audiobook by Rob Inglis. Segues into:
Trimmed slightly. Cropped picture to remove “60 years earlier” caption.
An Unexpected Party:
Trimmed a little to remove pettiness, but “Blunt the Knives” stays. I may incorporate a few shots from the first film’s prologue into “Far Over the Misty Mountains Cold” as flashbacks, and possibly an extra verse or two from Clamavi De Profundis’ cover, which meshes very well with the version in the film.
To follow the dwarves’ song. A full suite of opening titles, over an animated backdrop of original maps from both The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings books. Music by Parademics.
Toilet humour toned down as much as possible. Action scene completely removed and replaced with a quick gag: the dwarves all charge in, followed by an immediate smash cut to them tied up and about to be roasted. I will try to remove Gandalf breaking the stone, but no promises in this regard.
Radagast and Azog:
Completely removed. Cut from the troll-hoard to arriving at Rivendell.
A Short Rest:
Rivendell and Elrond introduced with narration from the audiobook. White Council removed, but some scenes from the Extended Edition retained in whole or part, including Bofur’s song.
Over Hill and Under Hill:
Stone giants completely gone and not missed. Arrival in Goblin-town trimmed to remove references to Azog. Escape from Goblin-town cut down to a couple of beginning shots once Gandalf shows up.
Riddles in the Dark:
Gollum’s introduction altered so it doesn’t seem like we’re supposed to know him already. He doesn’t drop the Ring on-screen. Otherwise pretty much left as is.
Out of the Frying-pan, Into the Fire:
Cut down as much as possible. I considered cutting straight from the escape from the goblin tunnels to the arrival at Beorn’s (Mamman cuts all the way from the the tunnels to Mirkwood, which involves the significant continuity error of the dwarves randomly acquiring ponies only to have to leave them behind immediately), but I want to keep the Eagles in the battle at the end, and so I ought to introduce them here.
Gandalf’s narration over footage of the Eagles in flight (idea stolen in its entirety from eldusto84) to bridge between films 1 and 2. Arrival at Beorn’s taken from the Extended Edition. Beorn scenes trimmed to remove references to Azog and the Dol Guldur subplot.
Probably trimmed a little, but need to be mindful of pacing in this area; Mirkwood should feel like a bit of a slog. Spider sequence cut down to remove the drawn-out action and the nonsense with the Ring.
Legolas reduced to his first line. Thorin’s parley with Thranduil trimmed. Tauriel’s scene talking about the Feast of Starlight kept, but she’s otherwise excised.
Barrels Out of Bond:
Severely cut once they’re in the river. No Orc chase, no arrow wound, no Legolas.
A Warm Welcome:
The Master and Alfrid trimmed down considerably, but not removed entirely. References to the Black Arrow and the windlance cut. If I can, I plan to incorporate “The King Beneath The Mountain” as sung by Clamavi De Profundis. Kili’s injury, the involvement of the Elves and Orcs, and so on all cut.
On the Doorstep:
Used FX shots from eldusto84’s edit to reinstate all 13 dwarves going to the Mountain at once. A few lines from the audiobook used for narration. The actual climb to the doorstep and the drawn-out attempts to find the door are trimmed down for silliness and to avoid the glaring continuity error with the moon-runes (“the setting sun…will shine upon the keyhole”). I’ll have to see what colour-grading can achieve in this area.
Cut slightly to remove the Eye of Sauron, but Bilbo’s conversation with Smaug mostly kept intact.
Smaug the Magnificent:
The dwarves never fight or see Smaug inside the mountain; the entire action sequence is removed. Will probably use eldusto84’s FX shot removing Smaug’s golden coating, or potentially remove it some other way.
Act One ends at the same point as The Desolation of Smaug. It’s by far the best point at which to do so. Entr’acte planned to include part of Clamavi De Profundis’ “Far Over the Misty Mountains Cold”, probably the part sung in the book in Beorn’s house.
Fire and Water:
Smaug’s attack on Lake-town kept mostly intact, minus the windlance and Bard using his son as a bow (borrowing Mamman’s cropped shots to achieve this).
The Gathering of the Clouds:
Kept as much politicking between the three races as possible, but continued the complete excision of the Dol Guldur subplot except for Gandalf coming with news of Orcs on the march. Thorin’s “dragon-sickness” will be downplayed but not eliminated. The battle itself will be cut very short; I want to focus on the build-up. Two more verses of “Far Over the Misty Mountains Cold” may show up here, but only if there’s a natural place for them.
The Clouds Burst:
Battle trimmed down severely to maybe five minutes. Azog, giant worms, trolls, Radagast and other nonsense removed. (Azog will probably show up in a couple of shots, but he won’t be named or shown to be important, and he won’t kill Thorin.) Bilbo’s concussion followed by a smash cut to black, followed by him waking up and finding Thorin already wounded and dying.
King Under the Mountain:
I’d like to try incorporating “The End of the Beginning”, an organ and choral piece by Pink Floyd, over the scenes of Bilbo’s grief and Thorin’s funeral. I’ll have to make sure it works in terms of timing, and I’m not 100% wedded to it, but it ought to work thematically — it was written to depict the aftermath of a great battle in the first place.
The Return Journey:
Short flashback montage to a few scenes from the battle, set to narration from the book, to make up for the fact that most of the battle itself will have been cut. Bilbo’s return home trimmed to remove references to the Ring, but the auction is kept.
Montage set to narration from the book (potentially including shots from LOTR), for symmetry with the prologue and to make up for an over-rushed ending to the movie (presumably done in the first place to avoid a repeat of the complaints about the over-long ending of The Return of the King).
Remade by me to incorporate credits for all three films and avoid duplicating new opening credits. Set to “Bilbo’s Song” from The Lord of the Rings (the one that begins “I sit beside the fire and think…”), with music written by me and planned to be recorded by David Slattery, possibly followed by a third Clamavi De Profundis recording, “Song of Durin” (also a song from LOTR, beginning “The world was young, the mountains green/No stain upon the moon was seen…”), or else one of the credit suites from the original movies.