Stephen Colbert is a huge fan of the Hobbit world created by J. R. R. Tolkien and is familiar with the most minute aspects of it. When I saw that he was going to interview Smaug (apparently is a character in some of the books) I thought it would be someone dressed as the character and was wondering whether it would be worth watching since I am not a big fan of the books or the films. I am glad that I did because it was really something to see.
Smaug turns out to be some kind of massive reptilian monster and what intrigued me was how they did the interview. Was Smaug completely CGI? Or was it some massive puppet? It looked too good to not be CGI but doing it is really expensive and I did not think that it would be worth it for a regular TV show, however big a fan Colbert is. Or has puppetry got so sophisticated that they can do things like this?
Can anyone enlighten me as to how the Smaug in this interview might have been done?
(This clip aired on December 11, 2014. To get suggestions on how to view clips of The Daily Show and The Colbert Report outside the US, please see this earlier post. If the videos autoplay, please see here for a diagnosis and possible solutions.)