Why Did Peter Jackson Change Hobbit Film's Name to 'The Battle of the Five Armies'?

Despite some early criticisms, Peter Jackson’s ‘Hobbit’ trilogy has provided some memorable moments in the ever-expanding Tolkien universe. With one film left, due to be released this December, a high profile name change has taken place, from “There and Back Again” to “The Battle of The Five Armies”. So what’s behind the change?

The Desolation of SmaugEvangeline Lily and Orlando Bloom will be back in the third film, which is now called "The Battle of The Five Armies"

Peter Jackson released a lengthy statement on his Facebook page, in which he attempts to explain the shift. “Our journey to make The Hobbit Trilogy has been in some ways like Bilbo’s own, with hidden paths revealing their secrets to us as we’ve gone along. “There and Back Again” felt like the right name for the second of a two film telling of the quest to reclaim Erebor, when Bilbo’s arrival there, and departure, were both contained within the second film,” he wrote.

“But with three movies, it suddenly felt misplaced—after all, Bilbo has already arrived “there” in the “Desolation of Smaug”. When we did the premiere trip late last year, I had a quiet conversation with the studio about the idea of revisiting the title. We decided to keep an open mind until a cut of the film was ready to look at. We reached that point last week, and after viewing the movie, we all agreed there is now one title that feels completely appropriate. And so: “The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies” it is.”

More: Three major predictions for "The Battle of The Five Armies"

We’re inclined to side with the cynics, who suggest “The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies” is simply more marketable than “There and Back Again”, which, while being quite sentimental for fans of the franchise, doesn’t really have what a marketing executive would, annoyingly, call ‘umph!’. ‘The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies’ - starring Martin Freeman, Ian McKellan, Benedict Cumberbatch, Richard Armitage, Evangeline Lilly and Cate Blanchett - will be released on 12 December 2014.


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