With the “D&D Next” Video Contest going on, I figured it was only prudent to journey back to one of my favorite fantastical locations: Middle Earth. It’s hard to believe that it’s been almost a decade since Lord of the Rings: Return of the King was released in theaters, but for fans like me, we’re once again being thrust into the land of Orcs, wizards, and elves with the December release of The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey.
Unless you’ve been living under a rock (or perhaps hiding in a dank cave like our pal Gollum?), you have probably seen or heard the little tidbits of information that Peter Jackson has been handing out to desperate fans painstakingly slowly over the last few months. Thanks to Comic Con, we’ve got a little more than a handful of images and a short trailer to go on. And while it’s definitely not enough to appease my appetite for hobbit happenings, I am in a state of eager anticipation for this film (and its concluding sequel(s?) next year) for a few reasons.
One, I believe that it is in the hands of the only person who can truly do the book justice. Peter Jackson spent years on the Lord of the Rings films and they turned out excellent. While it seemed like Murphy’s Law for a while when The Hobbit was still in the planning stages (director changes galore and general bad luck all around), I think the franchise was really just waiting for its master to take the reins again.
Secondly, most of the original cast is back, with some great additions, most notably Martin Freeman as protagonist Bilbo Baggins. Folks in the States may not be that familiar with his work, but if you’ve seen him on the U.K. version of The Office in all his nebbish glory, you’ll understand why this was brilliant casting.
A third reason to be excited or at least mildly curious for this flick is that Peter Jackson is shooting it in new 48 fps (frames per second) technology, which is twice what the standard rate has been for the past 70 years. While the footage that has been screened has divided many (some say it’s too realistic and takes away that cinematic magic), time will tell when the film comes out whether this has the potential to become the new film-making craze.
And last…well I don’t think anymore reasons are even needed.
For all those lucky enough to have done on their own journey to San Diego Comic Con this year, I’m sure they’ve be satiated with the never-before-seen footage and clips galore. I can only hope for some semblance of spoilery goodness sitting behind my lowly computer.