ComingSoon.net talked to director Guillermo del Toro about The Hobbit
and its sequel
last night at an event for the new Hellboy II: The Golden Army
He says they won't start the casting process until they've finished writing: "Literally, like every week, what you discover writing the two movies, writing the two stories, it changes. So, every week there's a discovery, and anything we say this week would be contradicted next week. Certainly that would be true in casting. Why create hopes or why create expectations if down the line you're going to go, 'You know what? That was not a good idea.'"
Regarding the creatures, he says there are so many more to be explored in "The Hobbit" films that were not explored in "The Lord of the Rings" trilogy. "We want to do a muscle-driven, radio-controlled suits for a couple of things. I already started that with Wink in 'Hellboy II.' Wink was pushed as far as we could within the time limits and the budget limits of the movie and we're going to take what we learned and apply it.
"Smaug is the creature in 'The Hobbit.' The way Tolkien wrote it, already, is magnificent. It's already a fantastic character. So, obviously, dragons, you ask every person what their best favorite dragon is, they will give you a different answer. In my mind, what we're going to attempt on the design of this creature and the creation of this creature needs to push the envelope beyond anything you've ever seen on that kind of creature.
"There is some stuff that has been done with dragons that I find... there are very few landmarks created for me. One of the best and one of the strongest landmarks that almost nobody can overcome is 'Dragonslayer.' The design of the Vermithrax Pejorative is perhaps one of the most perfect creature designs ever made. So, what you have to be careful is not to try to be distinctive just to be distinctive, but Smaug has certain characteristics that make him unique already. I am bursting at the seams about spilling the beans, but I won't because I would be shot."
Del Toro also talked more about two films he is producing--Adrien Brody/Sarah Polley starrer Splice
and Juan Antonio Bayona's Hater
--and you can read his quotes at ShockTillYouDrop.com