The Hobbit -- 3 films

Holy smoke! Holy smoke!

Since when did the Hobbit get upgraded to three films? I'm totally flabbergasted. Like absolute wowdom. Amazing. Fan-f*cking-tastic.

An Unexpected Journey (2012), The Desolation of Smaug (2013) and There and Back Again (2014).

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It was a few months back that they announced this change. Personally, I'm not particularly excited by it: I originally expected one film, splitting it into two films seemed reasonable enough for a large project, three sounds like they're just trying to milk the franchise for as much cash as they can make.

From what I've gathered, it sounds like they're basing it on the original story, but adding a whole load of extra bits. They can't use anything from the Silmarillion or any of the other writings because they don't have the rights to it. As a Tolkien fan, I'd prefer if they just stuck to the original story instead of making new things up.

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I reserve judgement until I've seen it (er, them) but my concerns are the same as the ones that have already been voiced.

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Eh, I'm a sucker for fantasy movies. I even enjoyed that new Snow White film, and it's as generic and formulaic as they come. The LotR trilogy were exceptionally well made and I expect no less from The Hobbit trilogy. Honestly, I don't really care how faithful they are to the book, just like I didn't care that the LotR films didn't pan out in exactly the same way that the books did (in fact, I thought they told a better story).

Originally LotR was going to be two films, btw. It was the studio that demanded a trilogy.

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No one should be surprised by this. A guaranteed money maker gets an extended release period, what else is new? Frankly, it makes no difference to me as I figured this would happen since about... oh, the announcement of the film.

I don't think it negatively or positively affects anything, as it won't necessarily change the way the films are actually crafted. Meh.

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DoomUK said:

Originally LotR was going to be two films, btw. It was the studio that demanded a trilogy.

My understanding was more along the lines that Peter Jackson figured he would stand a better chance of getting backing if he pitched it as two films but when he finally showed it to the right people they said something like "Good idea PJ but why aren't you planning a trilogy? It's a no brainer."

One of my (minor) worries is how Peter Jackson seems to like to spin out "emotional" scenes by making them painfully slow using some sort of odd semi-slow motion like effect where the action is slower than natural but the voices still work properly. Examples: the goodbye to Frodo and Bilbo scene in RotK and the long drawn out death of the big monkey (no, not Jack Black) in King Kong.

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Great, and each part will be three hours? Because we need another 9 hour fantasy epic. I still haven't seen the first films front to end complete. Too much time.

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They're only 9 hours if you don't have the extended special edition versions. Then it's something like 11.5 hours. :P

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Depending on the special editions, this might actually be a case where it takes longer to watch the movies than it does to read the book. Not even kidding there, I think I can read the Hobbit from cover to cover in the span of 9 hours.

However, I don't necessarily object to this. It's a world I enjoy just being in, so if he wants to putz around and we don't exactly rush to the end, I'm okay with that. Eh, but I'm probably in that diehard minority, and for most people, I can understand being more than a little cheesed off with the decision.

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Technician said:

Why is this fantastic? They are stretching-out this film to make more money.

I agree, it's just a blatant display of greed and lack of original ideas for original films.

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Anyone who complains about this series being too long is not a true fan. I'm looking forward to the 12-hour extended edition marathons.

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Doom Marine said:

Anyone who complains about this series being too long is not a true fan. I'm looking forward to the 12-hour extended edition marathons.

Yeah, if you like, maybe, a two film story stretched to the span of three.

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Honestly I'd rather just have the bits of story cut out of LOTR added into an extended-extended cut, but I'm not holding my breath for that. I'm not totally convinced 3 movies is the right move here, but Jackson has enough of my goodwill from LOTR for me to keep my mouth shut about it and watch it pan out.

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I have just bought the book of The Hobbit and I will just read that instead of bothering with the movie. I am loving it so far. And it was only 14.95, so I could not turn it down.

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Why the hell are they going to do three films for a single novel? "The hobbit" is 3 times shorter than "Lord of the rings", which has often been divided into three books.

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Enjay said:

They're only 9 hours if you don't have the extended special edition versions. Then it's something like 11.5 hours. :P


I just managed all 3 extended ones yesterday x.x

I regret nothing >.>

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Enjay said:

They're only 9 hours if you don't have the extended special edition versions. Then it's something like 11.5 hours. :P


You know what, I actually have those. I think it's close to 20 hours then with all of the bonus features.

You know, that could be a good way to kill a day...

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Totally okay with it.

As long as it captivates me like LOTR did, and doesn't take a decade to complete the filming, there could be 5 5-hour parts for all I care.

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Doom Marine said:

Anyone who complains about this series being too long is not a true fan. I'm looking forward to the 12-hour extended edition marathons.

you're talking about true fans so far gone they invent new characters into their tolkien porn slashfics, right? cause i've heard there's going to be an entire new major character - some elf chick as a love interest for bard the bowman. where's my vomit bucket...

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Clonehunter said:

You know what, I actually have those. I think it's close to 20 hours then with all of the bonus features.

You know, that could be a good way to kill a day...

especially if you're laid up with a broken foot!

dew said:

you're talking about true fans so far gone they invent new characters into their tolkien porn slashfics, right? cause i've heard there's going to be an entire new major character - some elf chick as a love interest for bard the bowman. where's my vomit bucket...

Aren't they expanding on the apendices? If you remember that Tolkien was creating a mythology for England, it's perfectly natural for mythologies to be retold and changed in their retelling and added to.

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It's actually one reason I've never really liked the copyright status being renewed/expanded on Tolkien's work, because it definitely feels like he inserted small tidbits everywhere with the intention of allowing other people to expand on them. As you say, adding to the whole mythology of the world and making it even richer. (Though somewhat in a more direct way; Arthurian legends (for example) were often unrelated stories modified to become one large mythos)

With that in mind, I am 100% ok with the Hobbit films expanding on the story. Whether it's good or bad is yet to be seen, but as of yesterday I've finally started reading the book so I can have a nice reference ;)

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geekmarine said:

Depending on the special editions, this might actually be a case where it takes longer to watch the movies than it does to read the book. Not even kidding there, I think I can read the Hobbit from cover to cover in the span of 9 hours.

Heh, you have a point there. In fact, if you've read it once, you can probably skim-read it in the space of a long afternoon.

neubejiita said:

I have just bought the book of The Hobbit and I will just read that instead of bothering with the movie. I am loving it so far. And it was only 14.95, so I could not turn it down.

I know that the target audience of The Hobbit is a much younger one than for The Lord of the Rings, but I have always found the Hobbit a nicely rendered, approachable and easy to read book that manages to stay entertaining even for an adult reader. The Lord of the Rings, however, has always been a dry, inaccessible slog to get through IMO that reads like Tolkein was showing off his skill as an English professor as much as he was trying to get the story across (but it's a joy compared to The Silmarillion). Don't get me wrong, LotR has a great, epic story and the depth of imagination and completeness is astounding but the presentation is too "academic" for my tastes. Someone said earlier that the films are better than the books. I don't know if I would go for that 100% but I'm not sure that I disagree either. I think I enjoyed both the films and the BBC radio plays more than I did the books.

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chungy said:

It's actually one reason I've never really liked the copyright status being renewed/expanded on Tolkien's work, because it definitely feels like he inserted small tidbits everywhere with the intention of allowing other people to expand on them. As you say, adding to the whole mythology of the world and making it even richer. (Though somewhat in a more direct way; Arthurian legends (for example) were often unrelated stories modified to become one large mythos)

With that in mind, I am 100% ok with the Hobbit films expanding on the story. Whether it's good or bad is yet to be seen, but as of yesterday I've finally started reading the book so I can have a nice reference ;)

I completely disagree. The only ones with any input on what goes into the Middle Earth mythos are the Tolkien estate. I don't want amateurs to modify and poke into the story any justin biebers, vampires and modern fantasy cliches they see fit. I'm glad the copyright got extended. Make your own worlds, damnit.

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printz said:

I don't want amateurs to modify and poke into the story any justin biebers, vampires and modern fantasy cliches they see fit. I'm glad the copyright got extended. Make your own worlds, damnit.

The best example that I can cite to support your case is the Star Wars expanded universe. I feel ill even typing the words. :P

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Yeah, but is Star Wars in the public domain? I doubt it. Those authors were granted rights and had to work under some restrictions.

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True, and they still made a pig's ear of it.

Even if LotR(etc) was public domain, I suggest that there would still have to be someone somewhere deciding what was canon and what was not, as least as far as the "official" view was concerned. Otherwise it would just end up as a contradictory mess (as opposed to just being a mess - like the Star Wars EU (mind you, the Star Wars movies are contradictory enough on their own)).

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A level-headed Tolkien estate (which I don't believe they are level-headed, mind you) would be fine as an authority on what's canonical in the LOTR universe, and doesn't require such strict control over what works are out there.

As for what printz says, he went straight for the worst kind of fanfiction. No, it's not very desirable, but such wankery works are unlikely to ever be published in bookstores ;) If you don't like such things (I don't blame you), don't read them. However I'm still in full support of authors taking very serious attempts to expand on the whole universe and create new legends for it; that such freedom allows some fairly icky and undesirable works as well is a small cost, and one easily ignored.

And remember, all creative work is derivative. The Hobbit and LOTR certainly are, so what would be so wrong about works based directly on them?

Hell, I seem to recall some fairly popular TV series as of recent based on Authorian legends and Peter Pan. are you against those too?

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