"TheOneRing.net has a long tradition
of convincing and slightly irritating April Fool pranks."

Celeborn, TORn Staffer, April 1, 2010 1


Prank News Article : Jackson to Direct The Jumping Bean Surprise
"Peter Jackson has agreed to direct the upcoming film, The Jumping Bean Surprise [...] the story is set in the 1870s and involves four teenagers using a time machine to journey back three hours to scare their past selves by dressing up as clowns. When one of them falls in love with his past self, however, a love triangle develops that challenges the boundaries of time and space."

Jackson was also identified as the author of The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings.

Message Board Scheduled Prank: All registered message board users given "Forum Admin" status

The ruse was put forward that, due to some glitch initiated by a forum database updates:

  • The regular Message Board Forum Admins had been demoted to the status of "Registered User" (users having made 9 or fewer posts) and were now (supposedly) locked out of certain forum areas and functions.
  • The posting levels of all non-Admin members were replaced by the title "Forum Admin."
  • The normally non-public board available only to the Forum Admins was now visible to all registered and signed-in forum members (who now had "Forum Admin" status). This board was full of joke threads and any member could post in these threads and/or create new threads.

Beyond carrying a "Forum Admin" label and having access to the prank Forum Admin board, no standard member had actual admin privileges and the actual Forum Admins retained all their admin privileges. And the actual non-public board where the admins discuss administrative issues was not actually visible to non-administrative people.


Prank News Article #1 : TheOneRing.net will shut down
"An official press release is scheduled for tomorrow, but we, the TORn founders and staff, want to notify all those who have supported us for the past 15 years that TheOneRing.net is shutting down."
Prank News Article #2 : TORn being sued by World Wrestling Entertainment over use the term 'one ring'
""Clearly the 'one ring' refers to our wrestling ring," said WWE Majority Owner and CEO Vince McMahon in a prepared statement, "and we are confident that any jury will recognize that. When someone is searching online for the 'one ring,' they want to find out more about WWE.""
Message Board Scheduled Prank: Posting levels changed to a pirate theme

The names for posting levels on the Message Boards were changed from ones referencing LOTR (and general Middle-earth terms) to various crewmember positions on a sailing ship. The names for each forum were also changed to sailing/pirate terms.


Prank News Article #1 : The Hobbit: There and Back Again release date pushed back to premiere at Comic-Con in July 2015
"In shocking news, Warner Bros. today announced that the release of The Hobbit: There And Back Again will be pushed back so the final film of Bilbo Baggins’ adventure can premiere at Comic-Con in July 2015. The new worldwide release date is July 29, 2015."
Prank News Article #2 : Leonard Nimoy confirmed to perform end credits song for The Hobbit: There and Back Again
"It’s confirmed. [...] Leonard Nimoy, the world-famous actor who is perhaps best-known for his portrayal of Mr. Spock in Star Trek, will perform the end credits song for The Hobbit: There and Back Again."

The article included a video of the "rough edit of the End Credits Sequence with the newly recorded song mixed in" and some mock Tweets purportedly from Doug Adams.

Message Board Scheduled Prank: Posting levels changed to a Star Trek: The Original Series theme

The names for posting levels on the Message Boards were changed from ones referencing LOTR (and general Middle-earth terms) to names from Star Trek: The Original Series.

Message Board Spontaneous Prank: The creation of a prank "The Silmarillion Movie" forum.

Message Board member DanielLB played a personal April Fools' Day prank on the Message Boards by claiming he had seen a forum dedicated an upcoming movie based on the Silmarillion. He posted (mocked up) screenshots of the board, threads, and posts as well as descriptions of some of the discussions and posts. In response, the Admins for the message boards created an actual prank Silmarillion Forum where people could post threads. The board was deleted at the end of the day.


Prank News Article #1 : Peter Jackson to begin wearing glasses again
"In response to the lukewarm critical reception of “The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey”, Peter Jackson has announced that he will begin wearing his eyeglasses again." adding: "Plans are also underway to add glasses back on to all of the behind-the-scenes footage of Peter that has been shot for the Extended Edition DVDs." "Weta Limited Edition replicas of the glasses will be available as a Comic Con Exclusive in July 2013."
Prank News Article #1 : Press Release: Disney to Acquire Middle-earth Enterprises

Coming off the news that the Star Wars franchise had been sold to Disney, TORn pranked:

"Global leader in high-quality family entertainment agrees to acquire world-renowned Middle-earth Enterprises, including THE LORD OF THE RINGS and THE HOBBIT franchises." The president of Pixar was reported as saying, "Pixar is especially excited about combining the genius of JRR Tolkien and our animators. We’ve wanted to get our hands on Tom Bombadil’s yellow boots and bright blue jacket for ages."
It was also reported that, "Continuing this strategy, Disney has also acquired the popular Tolkien community, TheOneRing.net (The One Ring, Inc. ) for $65 million. “We can all finally take a long vacation. It has always been our intent to profit from this community, and now we can’t wait to pass the torch over to such a well run corporate entity like Disney,” co-owner and founder Charwen Moonbeam says from his new estate on the private island of Charwenia. “We just know installments of ‘Bilbo Baggins Clubhouse’ will be a real winner with fans!”"
Message Board : Posting levels and Admin Names changed to a Disney theme

The posting levels for members of TORn's message board members were changed from Middle-earth locations to locations found in Disney movies and each Message Board administrator was assigned a Disney character name.


Prank News Article #1 : Twins, James and Oliver Phelps from the Harry Potter film series, to fill the roles of Elladan and Elrohir in The Hobbit
"Word now comes to us that not only are Elladan and Elrohir in the films, but they are being played by James and Oliver Phelps, famous for portraying the Weasley Twins"
Prank News Article #2 : English pub, "The Hobbit", to be purchased by the Saul Zaentz Company, dismantled, and reassembled in Los Angeles

In March 2012, it was reported that a pub in Southampton, England that had used the name "The Hobbit" for more than 20 years was being sued by the Saul Zaentz Company (SZC) for copyright infringement. 2
After widespread disapproval from fans and personages, 3 The Saul Zanetz Company came to an 'amicable resolution'. 4

TORn's April Fools Prank played on this story by reporting:

"SZC have put in an offer to buy the pub and take over management. 'We just fell in love with the place,' a representative told us. 'As we own the rights to the name, it seems right that we should own the pub itself. It would certainly be a solution to the current copyright infringement. Our intention is to use it in our advertising campaign for the movies. We plan to ship the pub and all interior fittings to LA … We hope to have it up and running there in time for the opening of the first Hobbit movie at the end of the year.'"
Message Board : Posting levels and Forum Names changed to a Hobbit film production crew theme

The names for posting levels on the message boards were changed from ones referencing LOTR (and general Middle-earth terms) to various film crew positions.


Prank News Article : Press Release announcing Stuart Townsend and Saiorse Ronan cast for The Hobbit
"News Article : Joining the all-star cast is actor Stuart Townsend as [...] Bard. [...] Stuart is no stranger to Middle-earth as he was originally cast as Aragorn in the Oscar-winning “The Lord of the Rings” Trilogy but left the production for personal reasons. [...] Saiorse Ronan also joins the cast in the role of Itaril, a quick and lithe Silvan elf who is dedicated to protecting the Elf King of Mirkwood."
Prank Press Release picked up by other websites

Less than 24 hours after TheOneRing.net posted its Prank Press Release, the same article was found on numerous other sites as well as evidence it had been posted on a few others and then removed. The website moviegno.me wrote their own article (directly quoting the Prank Press Release only minimally) but credited TORn as the source and provided a link back to the original article. New Release Movie (screencap) copied the entire Prank Press Release but changed words here and there. "TheOneRing.net" appeared in the title of the article but no link back to TORn was provided. Monsters and Critics published a mix of their own writing and chunks of text quoted directly from the Prank Press Release (not put in quotations). TheOneRing.net was not credited or mentioned in their article. Movies.ie wrote a completely original article (drawing information from the Prank Press Release) that included a direct (prank) quote from the ‘casting director’. Even though the site admitted that another article they wrote about The Hobbit was a prank, their rewrite of TORn’s article started with, "This one isn’t an April Fools joke... we promise!" TORn was not mentioned or credited.

A Google News search (conducted about 12 hours after TORn published the Prank Press Release on it’s website) using search words Hobbit Stuart Townsend resulted in 7 hits. Six had been published after the Prank Press Release. Two of those were dead links, and the title of one clearly indicated it was a reprint or rewrite of TORn's Prank Press Release. Additionally, the trackbacks shown at the bottom of TORn’s Prank Press Release page contained an additional dead link with a title drawn from the Prank Press Release.

Message Board : Posting levels changed to a Hobbit theme

The names for posting levels on the message boards were changed from ones referencing LOTR (and general Middle-earth terms) to ones drawing from The Hobbit.


Prank News Article : Leaked Press Release Draft: Hobbit Filming to begin October 10
"News Article : According to a source very close to the production, this draft of the official press release is supposed to be released with the launch of the LOTR Blu-Ray set on April 6th. But as always, TheOneRing.net has it exclusively for you first! [...] The Hobbit films will begin principal photography in Wellington, New Zealand, on October 11, 2010. [...] General release for the public will be on Friday, December 31, 2012."
Message Board : Posting levels changed to a Harry Potter theme


Prank News Article : The Hobbit...TRILOGY?!
"For a few months now, we’ve all been wondering why there’s been such a cloud of secrecy from Guillermo and PJ regarding progress on The Hobbit. Well, today we got wind of what could be the biggest story so far about this much anticipated film: a report that negotiations are under way for a third film!"
Message Board : Posting levels changed to a Harry Potter theme and posting levels reversed
Altaira "reversed the levels so people in Valinor were registered users and vice versa." 5. The Harry Potter theme "was a temporary joke to further confuse people" 6


Prank News Article : TORn to be Acquired by Time Warner
"In one of its gutsiest moves yet toward expansion and diversification, it was leaked today that Time-Warner is in the final stages of talks to acquire TheOneRing.net."


Prank News Article : Jackson to direct Live Action ‘Powerpuff Girls’ Movie?
"Sources inside Peter Jackson’s ‘3foot6′ and WETA have sent along word that Peter Jackson is working on a live action version of the popular ‘Powerpuff Girls’ cartoon."
Prank story picked up by other websites


Prank News Article : "The Hobbit" To Begin Principal Photography In New Zealand In 2005
"At the helm of the project is well-known science fiction and fantasy Director Paul Andersson, the young director whose portfolio includes smash successes such as Resident Evil, Event Horizon and Mortal Kombat. After earning critical and commercial acclaim for Event Horizon, Andersson relishes picking up after the success of The Lord of the Rings films and staking a claim in the Tolkien landscape, bringing to life the earliest of J.R.R. Tolkien's novels, The Hobbit."
Hobbit Press Release - The press release was housed at website promoting "Let the Hobbit Happen" which is associated with TORn (need citation on this)
TORn Prank News Article - (reported later that day to have been confirmed as a hoax by NewLine Cinema)


Prank News Article : The Return Of The King Domestic Release Date Moved To May 12, 2004
"New Line Cinema’s The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King, will be held for domestic release until Wednesday, May 12, 2004. [...] Jackson added, The May release schedule is typically the biggest of the year, including the kings of the summer box office. The lineup for 2004 is a bit empty at the moment, and we feel that placing Return of the King in May will give the fans something out of the common run of action films to appreciate all summer as well as establish New Line at the top of the order for the summer rush."
TORn Prank News Article - At the end of the News Article, there was a link to 'Reactions from TheOneRing.net's Staff' which lead to a page declaring "April Fool!"


Prank News Article : Andrew Lesnie Loses Oscar
This prank article was apparently taken down less than four hours after posting. "Well it seems a few folks were less that happy at our little 'Andrew Lesnie Loses Oscar' joke, so we're taking that puppy down and giving everyone a big hug and saying 'it's all ok now'. Seriously though I do apologize for that faux pas, sometimes we don't realize just who reads us, including the folks we talk about."
"The Frodo Franchise: The Lord of the Rings and Modern Hollywood" by Kristin Thompson. Published in 2007 by University of California Press. ISBN 978 05202 4774 1 Pages 159-160


Prank News Article : New Line Acquires TheOneRing.net
"New Line Cinema, has purchased the rights and ownership duties to the US/Canada/New Zealand based website THEONERING.NET effective immediately."
revel of the story as a prank with a special April Fools skin (the link at the bottom of the TORn Prank News Article would lead to this page if it worked.)
Prank News Article : Peter Jackson Arrested
This prank is alluded to in a post by Xoanon: Wow, I never thought such a silly April fools trick would nail EVERYONE. Well, us folks at TORN had a great laugh at your expense, but we couldn't help it. So, to set the record straight: WE DID NOT SELL ANYTHING TO NEW LINE and PJ DID NOT GET ARRESTED.
A screencap is also provided in that post. Thus far, the original post has not been tracked down.


Prank News Article : 'Lord of the Ringolos Contest'
Fake Press Release declared NewLine and Humpty Dumpty, Inc were collaborating on a contest to promote a line of chips called, "Ringolos". "Each bag of specialy marked 'Lord of the Ringolos' chips may include a special Ringolo with Elf designs."


1 April 1st, 2010 ~ TORn News Article: EXCLUSIVE: The Official Hobbit Press Release! – Update – Yup, April Fools!

2 March 14th, 2012 ~ TORn News Article: Hobbit pub accused of rights infringement

3 March 15th, 2012 ~ TORn News Article: Updates on The Hobbit pub issue

4 March 17th, 2012 ~ TORn News Article: Latest on The Hobbit pub, Southampton

5 April 1st, 2010 ~ TORn Message Board post by Altaira: But

6 April 1st, 2010 ~ TORn Message Board post by Altaira: Yes


TORn Mathom-house Picasa Album