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William Kircher on ‘The Hobbit” and Stardom

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WilliamKircher_LEGOWilliam Kircher, who plays Bifur in The Hobbit, is getting used to the fame that comes from being involved in such a huge blockbuster. In addition to walking the red carpet at multiple premieres, meeting Prince Charles, appearing at conventions, and seeing toy versions of himself, he has discovered some flattering (as well as NSFW) artwork by creative fans.

“The premieres were an incredible thing. I just wish everybody could have that opportunity,” he told the Nelson Mail.  “To have people chasing you down the street to get your autograph is the most peculiar thing. Being a New Zealander you’re flattered that somebody should ask. It’s a humbling thing.”

And while it all comes as strange to him after a lifetime of acting, he considers in an enormous privilege.

His character is recognizable as the dwarf with the axe sticking out of his head. As a result, Bifur rarely speaks, and when he does, it’s in the dwarven language of Khuzdul.

“In medieval times, people would get wounds like that, and they had to leave it because taking it out was more dangerous,” Kicher said in an LA Times interview last year. “Straightaway, I went and started researching what that kind of injury can do to you. It’s kind of like getting a stroke, so it can affect their speech and the way they think, and they zone out, so I thought, I’ll really go for it.”

As a result of his research, his performance has struck a chord with audiences.

“I’ve got an amazing letter that brought a tear to my eye from a woman in the US who had been looking after her brain-damaged child [from when] he started to change when he was very young,” he confided. “She wrote this really respectful and intelligent letter about how much she respected how I added that into the movie, how I was doing it, and what a good job I was doing, and she was locked at home with this 27-year-old boy with just her Bible and The Hobbit. You’ve touched somebody in a little tiny way.”

Kircher and the other dwarves are scheduled to start filming additional Hobbit scenes in May. In the meantime, he’s looking for a US agent and singing in a 1960s cover band, The California Dreamers, with his wife Nicole Chesterman-Kircher.

To read more about his life in Nelson and how he got the role in The Hobbit, read the full article from the Nelson Mail.

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