Smaug may be terrible, but there’s nothing bad about this incredible piece of cosplay honoring the villainous dragon from The Hobbit trilogy.
The costume, made by a Reddit user name Kialna, first debuted at AnimeCon 2014. But like the Old Dragon himself, Kialna craved more. Her next big stop was the London premiere for The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies earlier this month. Standing along the red carpet with dozens of other fans, Kialna and her dragon attire caught the attention of the true Smaug himself, Benedict Cumberbatch.
Cumberbatch, who voices Smaug in the The Hobbit films, was so impressed with Kialna’s costume that he signed his autograph on the tongue inside its headpiece. The signature was well-deserved. This is one of the most impressively detailed pieces of cosplay in a while; let alone a piece dedicated to The Hobbit.
On her Imgur page, Kialna details how she constructed her scaly alter-ego. The headpiece is a custom sculpture made of—wait for it—Dragonskin silicone. Kiln then painted over the silicone with professional paints.
Check out the images of Smaug in action below, as well as the Cumberbatch-blessed tongue.
And it doesn’t look like anyone will be tired of old Smaug anytime soon, with The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies winning last weekend’s Christmas box office.