Late last month, Warner Bros. put out a new, updated one-pager press release for The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies.
Within it was a new cast list with one interesting, and very obscure, addition, and one even more interesting exclusion.
I’ll quote the listed cast from the Warner Bros. presser below in full.
Ian McKellen returns as Gandalf the Grey, with Martin Freeman in the central role of Bilbo Baggins, and Richard Armitage as Thorin Oakenshield. The international ensemble cast is led by Evangeline Lilly, Luke Evans, Lee Pace, Benedict Cumberbatch, Billy Connolly, James Nesbitt, Ken Stott, Aidan Turner, Dean O’Gorman, Graham McTavish, Stephen Fry, Ryan Gage. The film also stars Cate Blanchett, Ian Holm, Christopher Lee, Hugo Weaving, Orlando Bloom, Mikael Persbrandt, Sylvester McCoy, Peter Hambleton, John Callen, Mark Hadlow, Jed Brophy, William Kircher, Stephen Hunter, Adam Brown, John Bell, Manu Bennett and John Tui
Yes, Warner Bros. needs a proofreader.
Lack of full-stops at the end of sentences aside, I’m sure you’ve already noticed the omission of Elijah Wood. Yet Ian Holm is included.
Now, since the beginning, a lot of us have expected the third and final Hobbit film to conclude with a bookend that mirrors the opening of An Unexpected Journey. It’s seemed almost inevitable that this would also feature both Holm and Wood.
Yet this little revelation from Warner Bros. press release seems to throw that into doubt. If you’re unconvinced, remember that this was the fate of Conan Stevens (who was Azog, then Bolg and then not in the film at all) last year — the first real hint we had that he’d been axed from the film was his omission from the cast list on the official Warner Bros. pressers.
So how could this bookend work instead? After all, we do still have Holm. Here are three options I can see:
1. A solo scene of Holm writing inside Bag End, narrated by either Holm or Freeman.
2. A scene between Holm and McKellen. This seems less likely as FOTR already has such a scene.
3. A scene between Holm and Balin (and possibly several Erebor dwarves). We know in the novel, Bilbo leaves in the company of three dwarves. We’ve seen already in DOS that Bilbo is closest to Balin (though Bofur goes close). Maybe there’s some opportunity for a coda involving the pair.
This is just guesswork, of course. You may have your own theories! Maybe it is an oversight — Wood was on the panel at San Diego Comic-Con.
The other matter is the inclusion of a fellow named John Tui. According to Wikipedia, John is a Kiwi actor “best known for his roles as Anubis ‘Doggie’ Cruger, the SPD Shadow Ranger, in Power Rangers S.P.D. and as Daggeron, the Solaris Knight, in Power Rangers Mystic Force.” According to IMDB he had a role in the 2012 movie Battleship and he’s also been on the NZ soapie Shortland Street.
Wiki lists his height as 6′ 0″ — pretty tall. That makes me wonder whether he’s going to be some new, named orc or goblin to spice things up in one of the final battles. Seems too tall to play an Iron Hill dwarf.
If you know more, drop me an e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org
Demosthenes has been an incredibly nerdy staff member at TheOneRing.net since 2001. The views in this article are his own, and do not necessarily represent those of other TORn staff.