There’s not much of a point in beating around the bush here, so let’s just come out and say it: Peter Jackson‘s third Hobbit will be released on July 18th, 2014. That, in and of itself, would be enough to shape an article around — you could talk about, say, the idea of putting it out in the summer as opposed to Middle-earth’s winter slot, or what competition it might bring (especially for X-Men: Days of Future Past, which will certainly not open on that day anymore) — but there’s a more crucial aspect that accompanies this.
In Variety‘s story, we’re also told this third Hobbit will be given the subtitle There and Back Again, while Jackson‘s second movie — which, as I’m sure you’re aware, was going under that moniker for some time — now has a previously-rumored subtitle, The Desolation of Smaug. With that, the main picture of this Hobbit trilogy is now becoming pretty clear; the first will probably remain untouched, the second will focus on — along with, I’d guess, end with — the battle with Smaug, and the third… actually, that still remains up in the air.
Bilbo will go back to the shire, that much is for sure, but what comes in-between, from “some of the related material in the appendices of The Lord of the Rings” and, more importantly, how it fits into his quest back home is a question for which we don’t have an answer. I won’t bother speculating, but many will throw out their own theories which, given the fan fiction-y nature of this new aspect, will probably not prove to be correct at all.
The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey opens on December 14th, and The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug will hit theaters a year later on December 13th, 2013.
Do you see this as a substantial announcement on The Hobbit‘s part? What do you make of it all?
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