Although officially all shooting for Peter Jackson’s Hobbit movies wrapped at the end of pickups last year, the cast have always said that they expect to head back sometime this year. In his interview with TheOneRing.net last November, Richard Armitage said, ‘We have nothing official at the moment; but knowing Pete, knowing what that third movie needs to be like, you know, his taste and what he’s aiming for, I have no doubt in my mind that we’ll be going back to do more stuff … On the last day of the shoot, he [PJ] put his arms around me, and he gave me a big hug and said, ‘See you next year.’ And I was like, ‘What, do you mean for the Premiere?’ and he went, ‘No, no; we’ll be back here again…’ ‘
Now there is the first hint of a confirmation that there will indeed be further pickups to complete the third movie, The Hobbit: There and Back Again. The business section of newspaper Irish Examiner contains this article about actor James Nesbitt’s entertainment firm Brown Cow Films Ltd; at the very end of the article is the line, ‘Nesbitt confirmed that he is returning to New Zealand in around May for the filming of the third Hobbit movie.’
There and Back Again indeed! It looks like New Zealand may be becoming Middle-earth, and the fellowship of companions may be gathering, for one last journey in a few months’ time. And that is an encouraging thought.