2012-07-30

The Hobbit [Updated] – It’s Now Officially A Trilogy

by Yo Snyder

Well, rumors have been swirling recently about the possibility of
Peter Jackson’s Hobbit project turning into a trilogy. Well, much to the
delight of many a fan-boy, it appears like that’s exactly what’s going
to happen. Here it is Peter Jackson’s own words from a recent post on Facebook:

It is only at the end of a shoot that you finally get the chance to
sit down and have a look at the film you have made. Recently Fran, Phil
and I did just this when we watched for the first time an early cut of
the first movie – and a large chunk of the second. We were really
pleased with the way the story was coming together, in particular, the
strength of the characters and the cast who have brought them to life. 
All of which gave rise to a simple question: do we take this chance
to tell more of the tale? And the answer from our perspective as the
filmmakers, and as fans, was an unreserved yes.’  

We
know how much of the story of Bilbo Baggins, the Wizard Gandalf,
the Dwarves of Erebor, the rise of the Necromancer, and the Battle of
Dol Guldur will remain untold if we do not take this chance.  The
richness of the story of The Hobbit, as well as some of the related material in the appendices of The Lord of the Rings,
allows us to tell the full story of the adventures of Bilbo Baggins and
the part he played in the sometimes dangerous, but at all times
exciting, history of Middle-earth.

So, without further ado
and on behalf of New Line Cinema, Warner Bros. Pictures,
Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, Wingnut Films, and the entire cast and crew of The
Hobbit films, Id like to announce that two films will become three.  

It has been an unexpected journey indeed, and in the words of Professor Tolkien himself, “a tale that grew in the telling.”

Cheers, 

Peter J

So, now we’re getting three Hobbit movies; a whole second trilogy for
The Lord of the Rings. How do you feel about that? Does this mean all
the cool stuff with Smaug will be held off for the third movie? Or will
the third movie (more likely) be an epilogue of “continuing adventures”?
Well, The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey happens this December, followed by The Hobbit: There and Back Again next December, so one can safely assume that the following December (which would be in 2014), is when we’ll see The Hobbit: The Further Adventures of Bilbo
(my own rather catchy title). Well let you know as soon as we learn
some actually details, in the meantime, what do you think of all of
this?

[Update]

Well now it’s officially official, as the studios have released this press release with the announcement:


PETER JACKSON’S LONG-AWAITED FILMED
ADAPTATION OF THE HOBBIT TO BE A TRILOGY

 

 New Line Cinema, Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Studios, and Warner
Bros. Pictures
Announce Third Film in
The Hobbit Trilogy

 

 BURBANK,
CA, JULY 30, 2012 — Peter Jackson will make a third film in his upcoming
adaptation of J.R.R. Tolkien’s enduringly popular masterpiece The Hobbit,
it was jointly announced today by Toby Emmerich, President and Chief Operating
Officer, New Line Cinema, Gary Barber and Roger Birnbaum, Co-Chairman and Chief
Executive Officers, Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Studios, and Jeff Robinov,
President, Warner Bros. Pictures Group.

Jackson,
the Academy Award-winning filmmaker behind the blockbuster “The Lord of the
Rings” Trilogy, recently wrapped principal photography on what he originally
planned to be a two-film adaptation of The Hobbit, which is set in
Middle-earth 60 years before The Lord of the Rings.

Jackson
stated, “Upon recently viewing a cut of the first film, and a chunk of the
second, Fran Walsh, Philippa Boyens and I were very pleased with the way the
story was coming together. We recognized that the richness of the story of The
Hobbit
, as well as some of the related material in the appendices of The
Lord of the Rings
, gave rise to a simple question: do we tell more of the
tale? And the answer from our perspective as filmmakers and fans was an
unreserved ‘yes.’ We know the strength of our cast and of the characters they
have brought to life.  We know creatively how compelling and engaging the
story can be and–lastly, and most importantly–we know how much of the tale of
Bilbo Baggins, the Dwarves of Erebor, the rise of the Necromancer, and the
Battle of Dol Guldur would remain untold if we did not fully realize this
complex and wonderful adventure. I’m delighted that New Line, MGM and Warner
Bros. are equally enthusiastic about bringing fans this expansive tale across
three films.”

Emmerich
stated, “We completely support Peter and his vision for bringing this grand
adventure to the screen over the course of three films. Peter, Fran and
Philippa’s reverence for the material and understanding of these characters
ensure an exciting and expanded journey that is bound to please fans around the
world.”

“With the
abundance of rich material, we fully endorse the decision to further
develop what Peter, Fran and Philippa have already begun. We are confident
that, with the great care the filmmakers have taken to faithfully
bring this journey to the screen, the film will be welcomed by the legions of
fans across the globe,” said Barber and Birnbaum.

Robinov
added, “Peter, Fran and Philippa have lived in this world and understand more
than anyone its tremendous breadth and scope, and the relationships that bind
it together.  We strongly support their vision to bring this great work
fully to life.” 

The
first film in the trilogy, “The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey,” will be
released December 14, 2012, with the second film releasing on December 13,
2013, and the third film slated for summer 2014. All three films will be
released in 3D and 2D in select theatres and IMAX.

From
Academy Award-winning filmmaker Peter Jackson comes three films based on The
Hobbit
by J.R.R. Tolkien. The trilogy of films are set in Middle-earth 60
years before “The Lord of the Rings,” which Jackson and his filmmaking team
brought to the big screen in the blockbuster trilogy that culminated with the
Oscar-winning “The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King.”

Ian
McKellen returns as Gandalf the Grey, the character he played in “The Lord of
the Rings” Trilogy, with Martin Freeman in the central role of Bilbo Baggins,
and Richard Armitage as Thorin Oakenshield.  Returning cast members from
“The Lord of the Rings” Trilogy also include Cate Blanchett, Orlando Bloom, Ian
Holm, Christopher Lee, Hugo Weaving, Elijah Wood, and Andy Serkis as “Gollum.”
 The international ensemble cast also includes (in alphabetical order)
John Bell, Jed Brophy, Adam Brown, John Callen, Billy Connolly, Luke Evans,
Stephen Fry, Ryan Gage, Mark Hadlow, Peter Hambleton, Barry Humphries, Stephen
Hunter, William Kircher, Evangeline Lilly, Sylvester McCoy, Bret McKenzie,
Graham McTavish, Mike Mizrahi, James Nesbitt, Dean O’Gorman, Lee Pace, Mikael
Persbrandt, Conan Stevens, Ken Stott, Jeffrey Thomas, and Aidan Turner.

The
screenplay for “The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey” is by Fran Walsh &
Philippa Boyens & Peter Jackson & Guillermo del Toro.  Jackson is
also producing the film, together with Carolynne Cunningham, Zane Weiner and
Fran Walsh. The executive producers are Alan Horn, Toby Emmerich, Ken Kamins
and Carolyn Blackwood, with Boyens and Eileen Moran serving as co-producers.

Under
Jackson’s direction, all three movies are being shot in digital 3D using the
latest camera and stereo technology. Additional filming, as with principal
photography, is taking place at Stone Street Studios, Wellington, and on
location around New Zealand.

“The
Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey” and its successive installments are productions
of New Line Cinema and MGM, with New Line managing production. Warner Bros.
Pictures is handling worldwide theatrical distribution, with select
international territories as well as all international television licensing,
being handled by MGM.