New Line Cinema, Warner Bros. Pictures and MGM have announced the titles and release dates for Peter Jackson‘s upcoming two-film adaptation of J.R.R. Tolkien‘s masterpiece “The Hobbit.” The first movie, titled The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, arriving in theaters on December 14th, 2012. The second movie, titled The Hobbit: There and Back Again, arriving in theaters on December 13th, 2013.
Both movies are set in Middle-earth 60 years before J.R.R. Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings. The adventure of “The Hobbit” follows the journey of Bilbo Baggins into an epic quest to reclaim the lost Dwarf Kingdom of Erebor from the fearsome dragon Smaug.
Ian McKellen returns as Gandalf the Grey, the character he played in “The Lord of the Rings” trilogy, and Martin Freeman, who just won a BAFTA TV Award for Best Supporting Actor for his role in the BBC series “Sherlock,” takes on the central role of Bilbo Baggins. Also reprising their roles from “The Lord of the Rings” movies are: Cate Blanchett as Galadriel; Orlando Bloom as Legolas; Ian Holm as the elder Bilbo; Christopher Lee as Saruman; Hugo Weaving as Elrond; Elijah Wood as Frodo; and Andy Serkis as Gollum. The ensemble cast also includes (in alphabetical order) Richard Armitage, Jed Brophy, Adam Brown, John Callen, Stephen Fry, Ryan Gage, Mark Hadlow, Peter Hambleton, Stephen Hunter, William Kircher, 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 screenplays for “The Hobbit” films are by Fran Walsh, Philippa Boyens, Guillermo del Toro and Peter Jackson. both movies shot consecutively in digital 3D using the latest camera and stereo technology.