”The Hobbit” Expands To Three-Part Trilogy

Posted: August 27, 2012 in Movie News

NEW ZEALAND, July 30—-Getting Peter Jackson into the director’s chair for The Hobbit was about as difficult as getting a certain hobbit out of his comfortable hole. But now that he’s in it, he’s having a particularly tough time getting out of it.

Jackson recently announced that his once two-part film will now become a three-part trilogy. Jackson had hinted at this at Comic-Con last month, but the extension is now official. (What is Comic-Con?)The story of The Hobbit will now be told over three films. According to Jackson himself:

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 [the writers] 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 . . . I’d 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.”

 As an avid fan of the book and Jackson’s Rings trilogy, this is music to my ears. To have the legend who hand-crafted The Lord of the Rings into a masterpiece trilogy come back to direct the production of my favorite book has been, in short, a dream come true. Now to learn that we will have even more of Middle-earth than originally promised . . . wow!

But is Peter Jackson perhaps being a bit too enthusiastic about this? Is the renowned director biting off a bit more than he can possibly chew? Maybe. But then maybe not . . .

There is a wealth of material Tolkien has left us; far more than just The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit. Included in the trilogy is some 100 pages of appendices—-untold tales revealed, unfinished stories complete, and a compiling of the history of Middle-earth. Enough material to fill an entire book—-or an entire film.

No, Jackson is not stretching one book into three parts just for extra money. He is giving a beloved book justice to please even the most ardent of Tolkien fans. But not only will the three films work coherently with each other, but they will also work in junction with Jackson’s original trilogy.

So say what you like, Peter Jackson naysayers. But this director is here to tell a story and to tell it right. If that’s not good enough for you, well . . . “you snooze you lose.” All I can say is plan for one—-or three—-exhilarating rides come these next three years.

The Hobbit part 3 will be released summer of 2014.

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