Earlier today it was announced that The Hobbit film is to be a trilogy set to conclude in late 2014. Director Peter Jackson confirmed this on his Facebook page when he said “It has been an unexpected journey indeed, and in the words of Professor Tolkien himself, ‘A tale that grew in the telling’”.
After 266 days of filming The Hobbit, it is now in post-production and it must have been at that point when Jackson realised that two films just wouldn’t be enough to tell Bilbo Baggins’ story.
Interest by Jackson in adapting The Hobbit actually began in 1995 and then again in 2006 a few years after The Lord of the Rings trilogy was released. Then, in 2008 director Guillermo del Toro was hired to adapt J.R.R Tolkien’s literal masterpiece with Jackson acting as producer. But by 2010 due to many delays del Toro dropped out and it was once again appointed to Jackson to bring Middle-earth to the big screen. So on 21 March 2011 in Wellington, New Zealand filming began.
The third instalment of The Hobbit is set to be released in 2014 and reports claim that more filming may take place in 2013. According to Jackson the third and final part will explore many of the appendices written by Tolkien himself that expand on the story set between The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings. Martin Freeman who plays Bilbo and Sir Ian McKellen who plays Gandalf the Grey have apparently both been contacted about appearing in a third film. Sir Ian today tweeted “Two HOBBIT films will become THREE”.