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There's a line in the first Hobbit movie which seems like foreshadowing, when Gandalf asks Sauruman, Elrond, and Galadriel why it doesn't bother them that the last dwarf ring is unaccounted for.

If you combine that with Thorin's noticeable change in demeanor at times during the second movie (prompting Balin to say "You're not yourself!") - including turning his sword on Bilbo for a moment - I wonder if you have a plot twist where Thorin (the perpetually grumpy dwarf) is concealing the last dwarf ring made by Sauron.

Is this a plausible direction the last movie might take (perhaps from information from movie-related interviews or the like), or is there something that would make this unlikely that I'm overlooking in existing Middle-Earth lore?

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    Is there any reason to think that he does (other than that he's a dwarf)? – Valorum Oct 28 '14 at 1:17
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    @Richard, do the three reasons I gave somehow not qualify as "some reason other than him being a dwarf"? – Developer Dave Oct 28 '14 at 1:23
  • I don't think this is a good question because there are no non-speculative answers, and nothing but shaky circumstantial evidence to support speculation. Although I agree that everything you pointed out could indicate Thorin is under a malicious influence, it's far from the only explanation, and in my opinion isn't even the most plausible – Jason Baker Oct 28 '14 at 1:29
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    @Jason, sure there are such thing as non-speculative answers, especially to those who know the appendices and silmarillion really well (I don't ). For example, someone could say "no, that's no plausible because Thrain had it last, and Gandalf is the last one that Thrain saw, not Thorin, and it wouldn't make sense for Gandalf to have acquired it from Thrain and then made the statement he made before the council." Another example of a non- speculative answer could have been, "no that ring didn't belong to Thorin's kingdom (theirs was destroyed) as per chapter X verse Y in the Silmarillion." – Developer Dave Oct 28 '14 at 1:36
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    I'm going to go with the 'primarily opninion-based' VTC reason for this one. You are asking "could this be a possibility?". If we won't find out until it happens, then how will we answer this question? however, I believe this question can be improved; if you change it to: "are there any production references, or details revealed that this will happen?", can actually be answered with a yes/no response. – Möoz Oct 28 '14 at 1:40
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My fault for not checking the LotR Appendices first; they read:

Years afterwards Thror, now old, poor, and desperate, gave to his son Thrain the one great treasure he still possessed, the last of the seven rings . . . . 'This may prove the foundation of new fortune for you yet, though that seems unlikely. But it needs gold to breed gold.' . . .It was therefore perhaps by the malice of the ring that Thrain after some years became restless and discontented. The lust for gold was ever in his mind. At last when he could endure it no longer, he turned his thoughts to Erebor, and resolved to go back there. . . Only long after was it learned that Thrain had been taken alive and brought to the pits of Dol Goldur. There he was tormented and the ring taken from him, and there at last he died.

So, not plausible because that ring was accounted for, but since Gandalf didn't / couldn't know that at the council, he said it was unaccounted for. Doubtful the screenwriting deviated from this, but you never know, I guess.

  • That's the perfect answer to the question. I don't think it would make any sense for it to reappear in the movie as it's not a ring of power. Those rings purpose was to create wealth. The perfect present for Sauron trying to convince the dwarves he could be their friend. – Mikey Mouse Oct 28 '14 at 12:29
  • This answer assumes that the movie will follow the book. We've already seen that it won't. I think this twist is plausible, but as it's just opinion I still agree with the close. – Plutor Oct 28 '14 at 12:54
  • @MikeyMouse: The Seven and the Nine are the same. Dwarves just can't be turned into wraiths like Men can. If one of the Nazgul's Nine was given to a Dwarf and one of the Seven to a Nazgul, nothing would change for them. – Shamshiel Oct 29 '14 at 11:52
  • It was taken from Thrain, and presumably put in Sauron's hand, but nobody knows what happened to it after that. It is still unaccounted for. – Oldcat Dec 10 '14 at 1:17
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No, he doesn't.

This is explicitly dealt with by the Extended Edition of Desolation of Smaug, where Thrain is shown to have the Seventh Ring at the Battle of Azanulbizar, but had it cut off his finger (and a sizeable chunk of finger with it) by Azog.

The scene may be viewed here:

(With Azog's taking of the Ring beginning from around the 3:20 mark)

Update - 17th Decmeber 2014

No, the last movie did not take this direction, and Thorin's behaviour is fully explained by "dragon sickness".

  • Since the question asks "Is this a plausible direction the last movie might take", this answer is, of course, a movie-canon answer. – user8719 Nov 4 '14 at 14:55
  • I guess I'll have to watch the extended edition to catch up; very interesting though. Azog was decapitated at that battle according to the appendices (and not by Thorin), but the movie just had him lose his arm instead. Not to keep this speculation alive unnecessarily (just playing devils advocate here), but I'm wondering if the arm that Thorin chopped off was wearing the ring taken from Thrain (Thorin is wearing a ring when he first shows up at Bilbo's door). But I may be way off on the timing of these events and will have to watch this edition to catch up. – Developer Dave Nov 4 '14 at 15:02
  • The same did occur to me, but if you compare the ring in this clip to the rings Thorin is shown wearing, they're clearly different. Yes, it's possible that Thorin may still have it but just not be wearing it, but that would lessen the dragon-sickness theme from the third movie. In the commentary PJ does talk some about dragon-sickness so it seems that's what's going to happen. (Interesting aside: PJ also hints that Bilbo may have already grabbed the Arkenstone following his conversation with Smaug). – user8719 Nov 4 '14 at 15:07
  • That's great info! I was wondering too if Bilbo nipped the arkenstone and was simply worried about what the dragon said before he turned it over to Thorin. It would probably be a better fit for the question on why Thorin turned his sword on him – Developer Dave Nov 4 '14 at 15:15
  • I watched the extended scenes but haven't checked out any of the commentary or extras yet, and though I think you might make a small case that Thorin does have his dad's ring (based on his reaction when Gandalf asks him what happened to it), I think I agree that's probably not where they're going to go. One thought though is if much or all of the gold in Erebor is related to Thror's use of the ring, would that imbue it with a hint of Sauron? In other words, is that why bad things are drawn to it or why it has a sickness over it? – Developer Dave Nov 5 '14 at 22:35

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