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Andy Serkis Raises More Than £290,000 With Live Reading Of The Hobbit

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Andy Serkis Raises More Than £290,000 With Live Reading Of The Hobbit

Andy Serkis has managed to raise more than £290,000 with his live reading of The Hobbit on Friday 8 May, which saw the Gollum actor read the entire novel in one sitting - a feat that took him just under 11 hours.

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Originally, Serkis set the fundraising target at £100,000, but the event proved to be an even bigger hit than he envisaged, meaning the money continued to flood in as more than 650,000 tuned in to the live feed.

The money raised from the 'Hobbitathon' will be split between NHS Charities Together and Best Beginnings, a children's charity that Serkis is an ambassador for.

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Thanking fans on social media after he had finished, Serkis said: "Thank you ALL so much for tuning in and for supporting our frontline workers. I am truly humbled by the response! Because of you, we raised more than £270,000 and counting!"

Andy Serkis. Credit: PA
Andy Serkis. Credit: PA

Promising that similar events may be in the pipeline, the star continued: "Thank you again to Harper Collins and the Tolkien Estate for making this all happen.

"We are going to investigate with them more opportunities to share today's 'one-time' live event, so stay tuned.

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"And with that, I bid you goodnight from London - and to you and your loved ones, stay well."

Speaking to LADbible ahead of the event, the Lord of The Rings actor said he just wanted to try and bring a little joy to fans who are staying at home during lockdown.

He said: "All the way through this terrible time, I've wanted to find away of connecting meaningfully, and to offer something up to the community which would help take them out of this lockdown nightmare.

"I really genuinely feel for those of us who cannot open a window or go out onto a balcony or get out of their environment.

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"People are going through so many different versions of lockdown: some people are coping quite well, some people are suffering terribly with loss, some people are suffering from depression. The range of the spectrum is immense.

Serkis famously played Tolkien's character Gollum. Credit: New Line Cinema
Serkis famously played Tolkien's character Gollum. Credit: New Line Cinema

"But I wanted to do something that would bring people together and take them out of it, take them on an adventure, a big, epic journey across a wonderful, imaginative landscape for a few hours.

"And in the same way Bilbo Baggins discovers something about himself on this journey, it speaks to me because everybody is discovering things about themselves through this pandemic. And it just came together as an idea that this might be a good parable for the moment."

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And when asked how much he wanted to make for his charities, Andy said he just had one goal in mind.

Joking, he said: "I wanna beat Captain Tom! I've gotta beat him! No, of course not, that would be impossible. He's a living legend, the man of the moment. He's extraordinary.

"I'd like to think we could make a healthy amount. But I am aware that people have been donating generously to people like Captain Tom.

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"Primarily, I wanted to do this as a way of escaping for people and to applaud, in some way, what everyone is doing."

If you are able to and wish to make a donation to the cause, you can do so by visiting Serkis' GoFundMe page, here.

Featured Image Credit: PA

Topics: Entertainment, Celebrity

Jess Hardiman
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