"The Hobbit" Movie
In 1966 United Artists negotiated with J.R.R. Tolkien, and he sold the merchandising rights for "The Hobbit" movie to the company.
"The Hobbit" was adapted into a cartoon by Rankin/Bass Productions in 1977, and was directed by Arthur Rankin Jr. and Jules Bass. It lasted 78 minutes and described the story of Bilbo Baggins and his companions.
In 1977 Saul Zaentz, after he acquired the rights for "The Hobbit", founded Tolkien Enterprises, a department of his company, to control the rights for both "The Lord of the Rings" and "The Hobbit".
There were rumors in the late 1990s that the script for "The Hobbit" film had been sent to MGM/United Artists, but they didn't make headway with the project as they didn't own production rights.
In 1995 Peter Jackson became interested in screening "The Hobbit", but it was discovered that Saul Zaentz still owned production rights for "The Hobbit", and distribution rights belonged to United Artists. Shortly after, Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Inc. (MGM) bought UA, and New Line Cinema, the one of the major American film studios, got the rights to produce "The Lord of the Rings".
In September 2006, MGM offered New Line and Peter Jackson to work together on "The Hobbit" movie creation. And on December 18, 2007, Jackson was announced to be the executive producer of "The Hobbit", and both New Line and Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Inc. would finance the movie. The two films - "The Hobbit" and its sequel - are scheduled to be released in 2010 and 2011.
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The Hobbit Movie News
Del Toro Gives Hobbit Update
February 14, 2008
Guillermo Del Toro gave an exclusive interview to Empire magazine in which he told about the present situation with "The Hobbit" and his participation as the director of the movie.
"I wish it was definite, but it isn't," he told. "It's still in talks, there are still a lot of 'T's to cross and 'I's to dot. It's certainly not certain yet…But, as far as I'm concerned, I would be packed in ten seconds".
Many will know that earlier this week the Tolkien estate announced that they are suing New Line for money they say is owed them from the Lord of the Rings trilogy, which could potentially mean the studio loses the rights to make The Hobbit.
"I heard that, but I'm quite zen about those things," Del Toro continued. "Since that news broke, I have not exchanged a single phone call with my lawyer or my manager or anyone. They talk about it and I have received some emails, but, as far as I'm concerned, until I'm on board I should not worry about it. I read about it, but there's nothing I can do about it. This week seems to be the lawsuit week in Hollywood".
Finally, Del Toro was asked if he'd bring back any of the Lord of the Rings cast whose characters appear in The Hobbit, like Andy Serkis and Ian McKellen.
"Yeah, absolutely. I've been pretty much incredibly open about the things that I love and don't love in the past. I've turned down huge franchises in the past because there are parts of that world I don't gel with. The reason I took Blade 2 is because I love the characters that Stephen Norrington created and the actors he used. That times ten is the reason why I'm interested in The Hobbit."
There may be lots of bizarre typos and randomly inserted symbols in stories in the near future, as we'll be typing with fingers crossed that this will finally happen.