A campaign to vote Bilbo as Best Hero
in the 2013 MTV Movie Awards
The information in this section deals specifically with information presented on or about TORn.
It is not meant to be a comprehensive look at any topic.

The MTV Movie Awards is a film awards show presented in a live broadcast annually on MTV. The nominees are decided by producers and executives at MTV. Winners are decided online by the general public. Presently voting is done through MTV's official website through a special Movie Awards link at movieawards.mtv.com. (Wikipedia)


In preparation for their April 14, 2013 MTV Movie Awards, nominees for 12 award categories were announced on March 5, 2013. 1 Fans could vote for their favorite in these categories by using a button on the MTV site. On the index page for all categories was an additional category of "Best Hero" that included these nominations:

Christian Bale – The Dark Knight Rises as Bruce Wayne/Batman (#votebatman)
Robert Downey Jr. – The Avengers as Tony Stark/Iron Man (#voteironman)
Anne Hathaway – The Dark Knight Rises as Selina Kyle / Catwoman (#votecatwoman)
Mark Ruffalo – The Avengers as Bruce Banner / The Hulk (#votehulk)
Kristen Stewart – Snow White and the Huntsman as Snow White (#votesnowwhite)
Martin Freeman – The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey as Bilbo Baggins (#votebilbo)

Voting for the Best Hero category was conducted by using a proscribed hashtag (shown above) on the social media sites, Twitter or Instagram.

The Battle Begins

In early April, after noting that Snow White had over 13,000 votes while Bilbo had just over 200, 2 TORn tweeted, "Bilbo needs your help! Losing to kristen stewart @mtv movie awards #votebilbo contest"

A day later, the media-watch group, WHO TRENDED IT?, tweeted, "Guess what ! #votebilbo trending in the US ? @theoneringnet did it ! Now, that's badass. Even as a cold hearted robot, I'm impressed."

On April 5, MTV wrote, "There's an epic battle waging right now, and you may have no idea. ... two warriors of social media have risen to the top: Snow White and Bilbo Baggins." "Snow White currently holds onto a strong lead, but Bilbo is right behind" 3

A few hours later, TORn addressed the competition in a Home Page article, admitting that "(Kristen Stewart) is big with the MTV market and any attempt to catch her would be futile." But, in the process of trying to get Bilbo's vote totals, one by one, past other nominees, MrCere noted, "A funny thing happened ... It became really fun on Twitter to #VoteBilbo! It is now something of a social media game to find clever ways to #VoteBilbo and we at TORn were able to re-tweet some of the better ideas, helping it all go viral." MrCere continued, "Its hard to imagine a Tolkien fanbase, less rooted in Twitter, having the numbers and frankly the passion to carry this to a win when voting ends April 14. I don’t know if we care enough, but it still is fun! As this is being written, less than 100 votes separate the two figures with over 40 thousand tweets cast." The article featured a few clever, funny tweets as inspiration to others who might join in. It also mentioned that #votebilbo tweeters had solicited help from the Sherlock, Potter, and Game of Thrones fan communities. 4

On April 9, TORn reported that Bilbo and Snow White were running pretty even and set up 20 tweets that people could employ with one click. 5

On April 12, TORn posted a parody video by Speigel Ei that employed video of Kristen Stewart from the Twilight movies with characters from The Hobbit and Lord of the Rings digitally added--all to Beyonce's song, "Put a Ring on It." 6 This video got picked up and mentioned by MTV with a "via TheOneRing.net" credit. 7 A day later, TORn provided Twitter Avatar Images and Macro Images to use in the #votebilbo campaign.

VoteQuest Event

As a final push to put Bilbo ahead and keep him ahead, TORn launched a VoteQuest Event for the last day of voting (April 14). Tolkien fans were encouraged "to hit Twitter with a volley of tweets answering the important question: “Why is Bilbo the Best Hero?”" The event was scheduled from 12 noon to 1pm Eastern time US with an encore campaign from 8:30pm till the winner was named. Detailed instructions on how to participate were provided and fans were encouraged to avoid getting aggressive, disparaging, or disrespectful of other fan groups, notably those for Snow White who was Bilbo's biggest competitor. 8

Voting Results

Voting was closed at some point during the live broadcast of the MTV Movie Awards the evening of April 14. Final totals were: 9 10

Bilbo Baggins | 1,637,179
Snow White | 1,532,571
Iron Man | 66,910
Batman | 34,314
Hulk | 25,306
Cat Woman | 24,040

Post-event Analysis and Offers

Late Sunday, after the MTV Awards show, TORn provided a brief recap of the event in a front page article and encouraged people to continue the community on Twitter using the hashtag #BilboTheHero. 11 Some of TORn's favorite tweets were also shared on their favorite tweets on their Facebook page.

TORn also offered a commemorative tshirt that would be available for purchase only until noon on April 16. It read, "#VOTEBILBO Because even the smallest tweet can change the course of the future..." (offers and mentions since removed from the site)

Two days later, a more extensive recap was provided along with an intensive look at how Ringer fans had come together in creative and meaningful ways to pull off the seemingly insurmountable task. 12 Quickbeam and Justin also discussed the #VoteBilbo event and campaign on April 16 edition of TORn Tuesday.


1 March 5, 2013 ~ TORn News Article: 2013 MTV Movie Awards Nominations: Full List

2 April 16, 2013 ~ TORn News Article: When Fandom Comes Together: How #VoteBilbo Rallied The Ringers

3 April 5, 2013 ~ MTV: Snow White And Bilbo Baggins Battle For Best Hero At The MTV Movie Awards)

4 April 5, 2013 ~ TORn News Article: #VoteBilbo becomes a thing via Twitter,trends in UK, US, will you join the cause?

5 April 9, 2013 ~ TORn News Article: Help Bilbo win the MTV Movie Award for Best Hero of 2012: #votebilbo

6 April 12, 2013 ~ TORn News Article: Even Bella Swan would #votebilbo

7 April 12, 2013 ~ TORn News Article: Bilbo And Snow White In All-Out War For Movie Awards Best Hero

8 April 14, 2013 ~ TORn News Article: Call to arms! Tell Twitter & world to #VoteBilbo

9 April 14, 2013 ~ MTV: Best Hero Vote Totals

10 April 15, 2013 ~ MTV: Bilbo Baggins Beats Snow White For Best Hero At MTV Movie Awards

11 April 14, 2013 ~ TORn News Article: Victory! We have #votebilbo victory!

12 April 16, 2013 ~ TORn News Article: When Fandom Comes Together: How #VoteBilbo Rallied The Ringers