The battle for Middle Earth
Jonathan Dean from independent.co.uk writes: Eleven hours and 38 minutes. That’s how much of Peter Jackson’s The Lord of the Rings is available for anyone smitten by elves, dwarves and small things with hairy feet. It’s the same time it takes to fly halfway round the world. It’s a heck of a stretch to spend in Middle Earth. But if said land – where JRR Tolkien’s books are set – sounds a little like purgatory, here’s some hellish news for anyone immune to the charms of Gollum, Frodo, Gandalf and co: the fantasy is back. It will be the biggest film story from now until the end of 2012. You have been warned.
The addition to the yarn is a two-part imagining of The Hobbit – a prequel to the most successful film trilogy of all time that began with The Fellowship of the Ring in 2001 and wrapped up with The Return of the King two years later, nabbing 17 Oscars and $2.91bn in takings. Such figures turned the decision to film Tolkien’s much-loved introductory novel into a no-brainer. But what has shocked fans is that Jackson – godlike in Ring circles – only executive produces this time, handing directing responsibilities over to Guillermo del Toro of Pan’s Labyrinth and Hellboy fame. Perhaps the creator has tired of the world he so meticulously made. It wouldn’t be surprising. Ever since the curtain rose on the trilogy, the franchise has been milked. Online shops stock 20-plus DVD spin-offs (Special Extended Editions, Box Sets, Special Limited Editions, a Trivial Pursuit game), with Blu-Rays to come. On the official site, 18-carat gold “One Ring To Rule Them All” gift boxes are being bought at £380 a pop. Such marketing clout greatly excites the studio moneymen. In short, no fantasy novel has been safe from being filmed. The battle for Middle EarthPosted in Casting Rumors, Guillermo Del Toro, Hobbit Book, Hobbit Movie, Peter Jackson, The Hobbit on January 8, 2009 by xoanon