‘The Hobbit’ Will be Made… Two of ’em

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I don’t know if it if our very own David Frank is some sort of soothsayer or what, but only one day after publishing this article saying the following:

New Line might pay what it owes Peter Jackson and pals for The Lord of the Rings and then hand over every remaining dime to Jackson so he can get The Hobbit made in time to save the studio. That’s me being optimistic. Very optimistic.

… I receive a press release with the following information:

  • MGM and New Line will co-finance and co-distribute two films, The Hobbit and a sequel to The Hobbit. New Line will distribute in North America and MGM will distribute internationally.
  • Peter Jackson and Fran Walsh will serve as Executive Producers of two films based on The Hobbit. New Line will manage the production of the films, which will be shot simultaneously.
  • Peter Jackson and New Line have settled all litigation relating to the “Lord of the Rings” (LOTR) Trilogy.

Yeah, only one day later.

I am sure you folks don’t care about the fact that we predicted this thing, but instead are more excited that these films are going to be made and Jackson will be involved. I say “involved”, because the press release says nothing about Jackson directing either of the films, but I can only assume that announcement will be made after a round or two of negotiations.

The two Hobbit films – The Hobbit and its sequel – are scheduled to be shot simultaneously, with pre-production beginning as soon as possible. Principal photography is tentatively set for a 2009 start, with the intention of The Hobbit release slated for 2010 and its sequel the following year, in 2011.

The Oscar-winning, critically-acclaimed LOTR Trilogy grossed nearly $3 billion worldwide at the box-office. In 2003, Return of the King swept the Academy Awards, winning all of the eleven categories in which it was nominated, including Best Picture – the first ever Best Picture win for a fantasy film. The Trilogy’s production was also unprecedented at the time.

For more information about The Hobbit films, visit TheHobbitBlog.com.

Now we just have to wait and see who will direct.