Variety had a sit-down with New Line chief Toby Emmerich about the state of the modest, smaller and newly profitable New Line film studio and its new existence under the Warner Bros. umbrella. The conversation turned of course to “The Hobbit.” We learn, among other things that executive Michael Disco will oversee the two movies for the studio. Variety also spoke with Warner’s Alan Horn who, according to the article, “… won’t predict when the first of the two “Hobbit” films will be out, but says the most probable scenario would be a release in the fourth quarter of 2012.”

It concludes with, “It’s a big bet for us. But it’s one we think will pay off given the success of ‘Lord of the Rings,'” says Emmerich. “This is one of the few movies it feels like people are waiting for.”

We know a few people who are indeed waiting for these films. In fact that “2012” date that just got thrown around may start a riot. Remember fans, biting your nails and tearing out you hair will not make things happen faster, nor will turning over cars or looting – the latter two reactions only lead to jail time. Read the whole story here.

Ringer Gerry sends us this tidbit from a Variety.com article:

Studio is also counting on distributing two installments of “The Hobbit,” with hopes that a thaw between director Peter Jackson and New Line over “The Lord of the Rings” will return that helmer back to Middle-earth.

[Read Complete Article at Variety.com]