Peter Jackson's final Tolkien film is attracting cinema-goers in their droves, and taking many times more than this week's other new releases.
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 Battle of the Five Armies is racing away at the top of the box office charts
Continue reading: 'The Hobbit' Storms The Box Office In Its Opening Three Days
The 2012-2014 series is the most expensive franchise in movie history, but also one of the most lucrative.
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.
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.
Continue reading: Production Costs Of 'The Hobbit' Trilogy Revealed
A lot of loose ends need tying up in this final part of the trilogy.
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.
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.
Continue reading: Three Major Predictions For 'The Hobbit There And Back Again'
JRR Tolkien's translation of Beowulf is finally seeing the light of day - or the shelves of Waterstones.
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.
Martin 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."
Continue reading: 88 Years Later, JRR Tolkien's 'Beowulf' Is To Hit Bookshelves
Filmmakers vie for box office records, but how many would be proud of being downloaded for free? One of 'The Hobbit' films took home the award last year.
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.
Filmmaker 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.
Continue reading: The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey Becomes Most-Pirated Film Of 2013
Fancy buying Erebor? Got $6 billion?
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 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.
Continue reading: The Hobbit: Smaug's Home Erebor Would Cost $6 Billion To Buy
Time to say goodbye for these fantasy stalwarts
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.
Here'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.
'The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug' appears to be a more engaging movie than 'An Unexpected Journey.'
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 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."
Peter Jackson films the cast's reaction to a YouTube fan video
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'.
Kylie Minogue turned up in London on Tuesday night for the red carpet premiere of her new movie Holy Motors, which opens next week in the UK and next month in the US. A hit at Cannes, the film is a surreal masterpiece that really does your head in. And Kylie's great in it.
The big release in the US this weekend is Dredd, which isn't actually a remake of the 1995 Sylvester Stallone action romp. It's a completely reimagined thriller based on the same series of comics, a surprisingly intelligent blockbuster, and a rare 18-certificate film that topped the UK box office chart a couple of weeks back.
Continue reading: A Week In Movies 21st September 2012