Hob­bit film­ing sol­diers on de­spite mishaps

The Irish Times - Friday - The Ticket - - News -

Peter Jack­son’s ver­sion of The Hob­bit is fast gain­ing a rep­u­ta­tion as a cursed pro­ject. As you may re­call, prob­lems as­sail­ing the pro­duc­tion have in­cluded the de­par­ture of orig­i­nal di­rec­tor Guillermo del Toro, the near col­lapse of co-par­ent stu­dio MGM, a labour dis­pute with New Zealand work­ers and at least one mas­sive fire. Now it seems that an ex­plo­sion on set has left two crew mem­bers in hos­pi­tal.

To be fair, the lat­est cri­sis seems fairly mi­nor. Ap­par­ently the un­for­tu­nate work­ers re­ceived “mild burns, but noth­ing se­ri­ous”.

In other Hob­bit news, the film’s pro­duc­ers have an­nounced the sched­ule for re­lease of the bi­fur­cated epic and the two pro­posed ti­tles. The Hob­bit: The Un­ex­pected Jour­ney will open on De­cem­ber 14th, 2012. The Hob­bit: There and Back Again will fol­low on De­cem­ber 13th, 2013.

The Christ­mas re­leases will re­store a tra­di­tion es­tab­lished by the orig­i­nal Lord of the Rings films. From 2001 to 2003, the adap­ta­tions of JRR Tolkien’s epic carved out a sea­sonal space for fan­tasy films that has been later oc­cu­pied by Nar­nia and Harry Pot­ter pic­tures.

A num­ber of ac­tors from the Lord of the Rings tril­ogy (in­clud­ing, puz­zlingly, sev­eral whose char­ac­ters do not ap­pear in Tolkien’s ver­sion of The Hob­bit) will be re­turn­ing to Mid­dle-earth for the loom­ing epic. Look for­ward to reap­pear­ances by Ian McKellen, Andy Serkis, Ian Holm and Or­lando Bloom.

Weird with beard: Ian McKellen will re­port­edly re­turn as Gan­dalf in Peter Jack­son’s two-part Hob­bit epic, now in pre-pro­duc­tion

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