Andy Serkis has raised £280,000 with his The Hobbit readathon this week.
The actor, who plays Gollum in the classic film series, read the whole J.R.R. Tolkein book in one sitting on Friday (May 8).
It took the actor just under 11 hours to finish the book, and he was watched by upwards of 650,000 people.
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! Thank you again @HarperCollinsUK and the Tolkien estate! Stay well! pic.twitter.com/m79POIQq4b
— Andy Serkis (@andyserkis) May 8, 2020
Reflecting on the experience afterwards on social media, Serkis said: “Thank you all so much for tuning in and for supporting NHS Charities Together and Best Beginnings, who between them support frontline workers, parents and babies. I am truly humbled by the response!
“Because of you, we raised more than £280,000 and counting! We are going to investigate with them more opportunities to share today’s “one-time” live event, so stay tuned. And with that, I bid you goodnight from London – and to you and your loved ones, stay well.”
Donations are being accepted on the actor’s GoFundMe page, which reads: “So many of us are struggling in isolation during the lockdown,” he wrote. “While times are tough, I want to take you on one of the greatest fantasy adventures ever written, a 12 hour armchair marathon across Middle Earth whilst raising money for two amazing charities which are doing extraordinary work right now to help those most in need in the UK.”
A Lord Of The Rings TV series is currently in production with Amazon, and production is set to restart imminently as New Zealand recovers from the coronavirus.