So what did we learn from the first “The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug” trailer? We saw some new characters, the promise of favorite scenes from the book brought to life, and a few departures from existing text. Here is a little round up what was seen and what it all might mean.
The Dwarves take a boat to the Lonely Mountain, but it is not yet known if they will be met on the far side by ponies to get them the rest of the way to the mountain. The scene of them sailing out of town with all the Townspeople singing them on their way is straight out of the book, but Bard’s warning that the whole town will be in jeopardy because of the Dwarves’ quest is not. Bard’s skepticism was always hinted at in the book, but it appears he get’s to play the ‘voice of reason’ in Laketown, which should give more dramatic weight to his character.
Thorin is captured by the Elves ‘with the rest of the Company’, rather than having been caught the night before while crashing an Elven party. In the book, the rest of the Company does not quite realize Thorin is gone because the forest is so dark and they soon become quite busy with giant spiders. After Bilbo frees them of the spiders and the elves capture them, they are imprisoned away from Thorin, not knowing he is there as well. This gives Thranduil an advantage when questioning Thorin since he has no idea what the fate of the rest of his Company is. By capturing them altogether in the film, this changes the dynamics when the Dwarves are brought before Thranduil. Again, this may not make a big difference in the overall story, we shall see this December.
The barrels have no lids, which means there is a higher risk of swamping, but may add a little bit of drivability for the dwarves. It also means poor Bilbo has nothing to perch on. The fact that they hit some white water rapids, it is amazing that Bilbo is still hanging onto Kili’s barrel.
The Dwarves’ escape from the Mirkwood Elves apparently does not go unnoticed by the Elves, or Orcs for that matter. This is shown with the Elves running through the trees above the river as the barrels go by on the river. But there may well be an inside person involved in the escape, since Kili has his bow and Thorin has Orcrist. This is a much bigger change from the books than some of the previous events, we’ll have to wait and see how this all plays out.
Bilbo climbs the trees of Mirkwood to give the Company their bearings, and gets to see a cluster of butterflies. Martin expresses such joy on his face at the sight, this will be a nice break from the darkness of the forest.
Gandalf gets into a scuffle in Dol Guldur with what appears to be a Dwarf, presumably Thrain. This should be a flashback to how Gandalf came into possession of the Key and Map to the Secret Door.
Bilbo will be fighting the giant spiders, and he looks scared. It also appears he gets to do a bit of gymnastics in those trees, should be a rather awesome sequence of events when Bilbo leads the spiders on a merry little chase.
Beorn in bear form is ginormous. That is, if the critter busting through the door the Dwarves are trying to close is Beorn.
Gandalf and Radagast explore the Tombs where the Witch King and his cohorts were supposedly locked away forever. Radagast seems more hesitant, while Gandalf is resolute in exploring, and neither seem happy with what they find.
Tauriel tells Legolas that they should get involved, a coming fight is also their fight. We do not know entirely what she is referring to, but this appears to happen after the Elves have fought with the Orcs chasing the Dwarves down the river.