In other news I’m sick of covering already, The Hobbit has finally been greenlit and will reportedly begin shooting in February. Peter Jackson will direct, WB, MGM, and New Line will co-finance, and it will be in 3D (obviously). Still no word on whether it will be shot in 3D or post converted, or whether it will still be shot in New Zealand after a coalition of actors unions decided to have a whinge and a cry about it a few weeks back. And while the directing rumors have seemingly been put to rest, the casting rumors are just starting to heat up. Oh joy.
Word is Martin Freeman will soon be set to play Bilbo Baggins, that Jimmy Nesbitt has been offered a role and that Michael Fassbender [or as I like to call him, Michael F. Assbender] is being pursued for another, as is David Tennant. Ian McKellan and Andy Serkis are expected to reprise Gandalf and Gollum.
The financial questions surrounding The Hobbit still remain: How much of the $500 million bill is Warner Bros footing? And who will eventually pony up for MGM’s part. MGM owns international distribution rights. Another delay in all of this has been the negotiation with Jackson. He co-wrote the script and was always a producer, but he only came on board recently to replace Guillermo del Toro as director. December 2012 is the release date for the first first film and the second comes one year later. Both are in 3D. [Deadline]
My sources tell me the move follows a New Zealand tradition in which Peter Jackson emerges from his burrow, and if he sees his shadow, we get six more hours of gay hobbit movies.