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'The Hobbit' Storms The Box Office In Its Opening Three Days


The Hobbit Jamie Foxx

In news that will cheer the film industry after what has been a tumultuous week, the new Hobbit picture is performing extremely well, leading the box offices in its opening week.

The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies, the final instalment of Peter Jackson’s widescreen depiction of J. R. R. Tolkien’s classic work of fiction, has taken $51 million since its opening in the States on Wednesday, including $16.6 million on Friday alone.

The Hobbit
The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies is racing away at the top of the box office charts

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Production Costs Of 'The Hobbit' Trilogy Revealed


The Hobbit Peter Jackson

The Hobbit trilogy is officially the most expensive movie series ever produced. New financial details reveal that the expenditure on the three films has totalled nearly three quarters of a billion dollars.

The Hobbit
Martin Freeman, pictured here in The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug (2013), will reprise his role as Bilbo Baggins

The details, courtesy of the Associated Press, show that the Peter Jackson-directed trilogy has received among the biggest budgetary layouts in movie history. Financial documents were filed earlier this month in New Zealand, where the films are shot, which state that production costs through to March 2014 have reached 934 million New Zealand Dollars, equivalent to $745 million in US currency.

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Three Major Predictions For 'The Hobbit There And Back Again'


Martin Freeman Orlando Bloom Richard Armitage Benedict Cumberbatch Lee Pace Lord Of The Rings The Hobbit

We’re two films, five hours and one cliffhanger into The Hobbit film series and final installment, There And Back Again, is due out in December. This means we’re in for about eight months of speculation. The trailer isn’t even out yet, but looking back on the source material, there are a few predictions to be made about the final film. We'd put a spoiler warning here, but you know...the book has been out for almost 90 years, just saying.

Martin Freeman
This one might be less about Bilbo and more about... well, everyone else.

3. The Battle of the Five Armies. At this point in the franchise, we are yet to see Thorin get consumed by greed, which is one of the main plot points in The Hobbit. At one point, the King Under the Mountain should hole up with his gold and refuse to pay any compensation to the people of Laketown (who at this point are about to have their town torched by Smaug) or to the Wood Elves. The two armies are on their way to lay siege to the mountain, when they discover that there is an orc and warg army on the way too. Basically the culmination of the entire series.

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88 Years Later, JRR Tolkien's 'Beowulf' Is To Hit Bookshelves


The Hobbit Martin Freeman Lord Of The Rings

JRR Tolkien's translation of the epic Beowulf is to be published for the first time almost 90 years after its completion. Beowulf: A Translation and Commentary will be published in May, giving Tolkien fans an extraordinary insight into the book that helped inspire The Lord Of The Rings and The Hobbit.

The Hobbit There and Back AgainMartin Freeman in The Hobbit: There and Back Again

The book, to be published in the UK by HarperCollins, has been edited by Tolkien's son Christopher Tolkien, who said the attention to detail gives rise to "a sense of immediacy and clarity of his vision."

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The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey Becomes Most-Pirated Film of 2013


The Hobbit Peter Jackson

The Hobbit scored a big victory in the early days of 2014, by being named the most-pirated film of 2013. According to Entertainment Weekly, The Hobbit: An unexpected Journey was downloaded more than 8.4 million times last year.

Peter JacksonFilmmaker Peter Jackson at the opening of 'The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey'

The film didn't win the title easily though. Django Unchained was close on its heels with just over 8.1 million. The numbers may have been more troubling for Django, since it brought in around $425 million at the worldwide box office — far behind The Hobbit's $1.017 billion. Which means a much higher percentage illegally downloaded the Quentin Tarantino film.

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The Hobbit: Smaug's Home Erebor Would Cost $6 Billion to Buy


Benedict Cumberbatch Peter Jackson Martin Freeman Lord Of The Rings The Hobbit

Erebor, The Lonely Mountain where Smaug the Dragon lives in The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug, would cost around $6 billion to buy, if it was real, according to a new housing report. US real estate experts Movoto have put together some details of the "multilevel property" to coincide with the release of The Desolation of Smaug - based on JRR Tolkien's Hobbit book. The company has previously estimated the price of Hogwarts, Wayne Manor and Barbie's dream house in Malibu.

Martin Freeman The HobbitMartin Freeman as Bilbo Baggins in 'The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug'

On the basis that Erebor includes an entire underground city and working on the assumption that Middle Earth mirrors Europe, Movoto has valued Smaug's luxury property at $6 billion. It estimates that the Lonely Mountain is slightly north of Kirov in Russia and is probably around 44 square miles.

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Orlando Bloom and Sir Ian McKellen Are Legolas And Gandalf For The Last Time


Ian McKellen Orlando Bloom Peter Jackson Lord Of The Rings The Hobbit

As filming for The Hobbit trilogy comes to an end, the franchise says goodbye to some of its most loved characters. The time has come for Legolas and Gandalf to put down their bow and staff respectively, as the actors that portray them leave behind a loved series.

Ian McKellenHere's McKellen enjoying a smoke and some lines

Expected to feature heavily, as he did in The Lord Of The Rings, Orlando Bloom’s Legolas will enjoy his last outings in The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug, which is expected to hit cinemas this December, and the last film The Hobbit: There and Back Again.

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The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug Trailer: Here's Benedict Cumberbatch! [Trailers and Pictures]


The Hobbit Benedict Cumberbatch Martin Freeman Peter Jackson Ian McKellen Richard Armitage Evangeline Lilly Orlando Bloom Luke Evans Lord Of The Rings

The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug Trailer is finally here, and with it, the first look at Benedict Cumberbatch's big scaly fire breathing dragon. The British actor voices Smaug in the second of Peter Jackson's trilogy, which appears for a couple of seconds at the end of the new trailer - however, we still haven't heard the beast's voice and really hope he utters something in the actual movie, or it could be a miserable pay-packet for our Benedict.

Martin Freeman as the Hobbit Bilbo Baggins in The Hobbit: The Desolation Of SmaugMartin Freeman as the Hobbit Bilbo Baggins in The Hobbit: The Desolation Of Smaug

Mainly, it's the old characters that have been called upon to hype the latest film, with the dwarves playing a prominent role in the trailer and Bilbo looking a bit bewildered as usual. However, we are treated to the return of Orlando Bloom's Legolas - who literally slides into the trilogy - and Luke Evans' Bard the Bowman. The latter had a minor role in the previous film though is believed to be crucial to The Desolation of Smaug and There And Back Again. According to Yahoo Moves, the Bowman is tasked with stopping the terrifying dragon after warning the dwarves, "If you awaken that beast you will destroy us all."

Continue reading: The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug Trailer: Here's Benedict Cumberbatch! [Trailers and Pictures]

The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug Trailer: Jackson Posts The 'Happy Hobbit's' Reaction


Peter Jackson Orlando Bloom Evangeline Lilly Lee Pace Lord Of The Rings The Hobbit

Three Elves are watching a YouTube video. This is not, contrary to how it might appear, the start of a bad joke but is actual video footage posted by Peter Jackson on his Facebook page. The cast and crew of The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug are amused by fan reactions to the trailer released on Tuesday. Their mirth results from watching two girls, Alex and Kellie or Fili and Kili (as they've named themselves on YouTube), view the film trailer for the first time. The three elves in question are Orlando Bloom, Evangeline Lilly and Lee Pace. Lilly said the fan's reaction was 'more intense than the trailer'. 

Other fans have commented on the trailer - on Jackson's Facebook page - saying it is 'awesome'; that they 'can't wait' and that the director is 'the greatest'. Whilst the majority of fan comments are positive, there are a few who have complained (via Facebook and Twitter) that the special effects are poor. Criticism has particularly directed at Smaug who is described as 'disappointing'. 

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Happy Birthday Tolkien, eBay Sale Draws in a Fortune to Defend Hobbit Pub


The Hobbit

If there was ever a time to sell of JRR Tolkien's it's now, because there has never been quite so much interest in the author. While the Lord of the Rings trilogy sold incredibly well, and continues to be a favourite among fans, the release of The Hobbit, ten years after the original trilogy opened, marks the beginning of a whole new wave of Tolkien enthusiasts in the making. This is probably why a fireplace once owned by Middle Earth's creator has received a bid of £50,000 on eBay.

Stephen Malton, according to the Bournmouth Echo, is the proprietor of a demolition who demolished a bungalow that used to be owned by the writer. Since the building was destroyed, Malton has uncovered a number of items that he thought would be lucrative - and he wasn't wrong.

As well as the fireplace, among the items were a postcard sent to Tolkien, two lions' heads that have already been sold, a stone griffin and a fairy ornament. 

Continue reading: Happy Birthday Tolkien, eBay Sale Draws in a Fortune to Defend Hobbit Pub

The Hobbit Top At The Box Office Once Again


Peter Jackson Anne Hathaway Amanda Seyfried The Hobbit

The Hobbit, which wasn’t much of a favorite with critics upon its release, has continued to dominate the box office for the third week straight.

The hit prequel to the Lord of the Rings trilogy has been a massive hit domestically, grossing over $222 million since its release, and even a bigger hit abroad, with almost double that profit - $400 million in sales. According to distributor Warner Bros, this past weekend has seen Peter Jackson’s blockbuster raise just under $33 million, placing it firmly on top of the box office charts, ahead of a number of blockbusters this season, such as Quentin Tarantino’s controversial Django Unchained, which came in second after the weekend with just under $31 million. Django has made about $64 million, solidifying its place as a rather unusual holiday blockbuster.

Rounding out the top three came Les Miserables, which, with $28 million didn’t do quite as well as its huge critical acclaim had hinted at. Still, the adaptation, featuring Anne Hathaway and Amanda Seyfried, managed to rake in a respectable $67 million over its six-day run so far. If there is one conclusion we can all draw from this it is that people love to spend cash at the movies over the holiday season. Who would have thought!

The Hobbit Holds It Spot To Be Named The Box Office Champion Of The Holiday Season


Martin Freeman The Hobbit Peter Jackson

The Christmas box office charts hold few surprises this year.

As expected, Peter Jackson’s massive fantasy production The Hobbit is up front, despite generally unfavorable reactions from critics. The film has racked up $36.7 million in sales during its first week and audiences continue to pour in to see the Tolkien adaptation. While the box office proceeds during the week have seen a huge drop from the stunning $106 million the film made during opening weekend, it is expected to make up for the drop during the extended Christmas weekend, when audiences will be more than willing to spend their free time and holiday bonuses on movie tickets.

Coming in as the second highest earner of the week is the action flick Jack Reacher, starring Tom Cruise as, well, himself. The film made over $15 million this week, but with a production value of $60 million, the movie will be relying on earnings from international audiences to justify the investment. Meanwhile, This Is Forty, Rise Of The Guardians and Lincoln round up this week’s box office chart, bringing in $12, $5.9 and $5.6 million respectively in what is usually a slow week for movies.

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Pre-Release Jitters Quashed As The Hobbit Travels To $84.8 Million At US Box Office


Peter Jackson The Hobbit

Crisis, what crisis? Fears over how The Hobbit might have got on over the weekend in the US Box Office were comfortably swept aside as, based on the back of a huge core audience left over from the Lord Of The Rings trilogy and a lack of competition elsewhere in the new releases, Peter Jackson’s new trilogy kicked off with almighty takings of $84.8 million.

Though some had predicted that the film could take as much as $100 million on the opening weekend, its eventual figure was still a record for a debut weekend in December for a movie, placing it a huge $77.4 million ahead of second place, a resurgent Rise Of The Guardians. According to E! Online, the previous record was held by the Will Smith starring I Am Legend, which took $77.2 million in 2007, and Avatar now sits at third on that list.

Though a great weekend, there was still one thing to be concerned about: the estimated drop in takings on each day. The film took a reported $37.5 million on Friday (December 14), $28.2 million on Saturday (December 15) and $19.1 million on Sunday (December 16). The sensitive issue of the recent Newtown shooting tragedy may well have played a part, though the film’s studios understandably wouldn’t get into depth about how it might have. With the school holidays beginning this week, though, there is the chance that The Hobbit could sustain respectable takings into the second weekend yet.

The Hobbit Movie Was A "Good Omen" For Martin Freeman


Martin Freeman The Hobbit Peter Jackson

The Hobbit movie, or The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey to give it its full title, is currently doing the rounds in cinemas across the globe and whilst not everybody is a fan, one person who was fervent before filming had started was the film's star Martin Freeman.

In a recent interview with Radio Times, Freeman revealed that he saw his part in the film as being a "good omen,' largely down to the fact that he has an uncanny resemblance to actor Ian Holm, who played the role of Bilbo Baggins in the Lord of the Rings films. He told the magazine, "When I was having my face cast [for prosthetic ears], I was told that the dimensions of Ian's and my face are almost identical, which they thought was a good omen."

A film as colossal an undertaking as The Hobbit proved to be needs all the good omens it can take, so it's a good thing Freeman was there to fill in that particular one. If you ask us, Freeman was always the perfect choice for the role of Bilbo, and his performance in the film has all but proved that anyway.

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The Hobbit: What Are People Saying - Review Round-Up


The Hobbit Peter Jackson

The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey is the first of three movie adaptations of J.R.R. Tolkein's beloved book, and predecessor to The Lord of the Rings, The Hobbit. With the first instalment of Peter Jackson's adaptation hitting cinemas last week, the anticipation that preceded it had been unseen since, well, the final LOTR movie. Here's what people have had to say so far.

Currently, the film holds a rather unimpressive score of 65% on movie review amalgamator Rotten Tomatoes, and a quick glance through the reviews circulating will show that the overall reception of the film can be described simply as 'meh'. Some have been somewhat lenient on Jackson and his latest effort, whilst others have been much harsher, so let's look at the neysayers first shall we.

CNN were particularly critical of the adaption, saying the film was "a major comedown, a muddle-headed and cumbersome piece of filmmaking that betrays Jackson's mercenary motives -- Tolkien's book, too." Likewise, the New York Times and USA Today were equally unforgiving, calling the film an over-scale" and a "plodding spectacle," as well as bemoaning the "less substantial" story the film relies on. Let"'s not forget, the Hobbit is just one book, shorter than any of the Lord of the Rings books, so a sense that the films will be drawn out would not be lost.

Continue reading: The Hobbit: What Are People Saying - Review Round-Up