The Hobbit as another trilogy?

The Hobbit movie will be released on December 14.  That is to say, the first installment will be released.  The plans have been for the story to be told in two parts, with the second movie coming out in the following year. But recently it  has been reported that director Peter Jackson, who gave us the Lord of the Rings trilogy on film, wants to turn the Hobbit into a trilogy also.

Tolkien fans have been worried that stretching the rather slender plot of a pretty short novel over three motion pictures would distort the tale.  Lord of the Rings consisted of three separate novels, so three separate movies did them justice and corresponded to the trilogy’s epic scope.  The Hobbit, though, is in a lighter key, a simple story, in the words of the sub-title, of “there and back again” that could be ruined by an overblown Hollywood treatment.

But it appears that the third movie will not involve slicing the Hobbit novel into three pieces.  Rather, Jackson is thinking about making a third movie about the back story to the rest of them based on Tolkien’s extensive notes and appendicies, which are included in the movie rights that Jackson holds.

I say go for it, and also get the rights to the Silmarillion.  There is material for lots of movies there.  We need one on Beren and Luthien.  The Children of Hurin.  That road goes ever on.

Peter Jackson Clarifies ‘Hobbit’ Trilogy Talk; Third Movie Based on Tolkien’s Notes.

About Gene Veith

Professor of Literature at Patrick Henry College, the Director of the Cranach Institute at Concordia Theological Seminary, a columnist for World Magazine and TableTalk, and the author of 18 books on different facets of Christianity & Culture.

  • Michael B.

    “I say go for it, and also get the rights to the Silmarillion. There is material for lots of movies there. We need one on Beren and Luthien. The Children of Hurin. That road goes ever on.”

    haha yes!

  • Michael B.

    “I say go for it, and also get the rights to the Silmarillion. There is material for lots of movies there. We need one on Beren and Luthien. The Children of Hurin. That road goes ever on.”

    haha yes!

  • Dan Kempin

    Makes sense to me. The Hobbit is a shorter book, but it is filled with scenes that readily translate to the movie screen–trolls, spiders, enchanted rivers, dragons and battles. Yeah, I could see that filling up a lot of movie screen.

    Also, Lord of the Rings was not originally three separate novels. It was one novel that got split into three by the publisher.

  • Dan Kempin

    Makes sense to me. The Hobbit is a shorter book, but it is filled with scenes that readily translate to the movie screen–trolls, spiders, enchanted rivers, dragons and battles. Yeah, I could see that filling up a lot of movie screen.

    Also, Lord of the Rings was not originally three separate novels. It was one novel that got split into three by the publisher.

  • SKPeterson

    The Children of Hurin would be great; a Tolkien epic tragedy that is now only found in Branagh’s Shakespearean retellings, though he’s now mostly doing the lighter fare. Besides, there have been three separate retellings of Beowulf in the last 10 years – a little more Tolkien epic saga couldn’t hurt.

  • SKPeterson

    The Children of Hurin would be great; a Tolkien epic tragedy that is now only found in Branagh’s Shakespearean retellings, though he’s now mostly doing the lighter fare. Besides, there have been three separate retellings of Beowulf in the last 10 years – a little more Tolkien epic saga couldn’t hurt.

  • http://www.brandywinebooks.net Lars Walker

    I think this could be very good. The one thing I wonder about is whether the essentially light central story might be lost in the high and rather dark larger story to which they’re opening it out.

  • http://www.brandywinebooks.net Lars Walker

    I think this could be very good. The one thing I wonder about is whether the essentially light central story might be lost in the high and rather dark larger story to which they’re opening it out.

  • http:/Forsomereason,IwantedtopresslikeonPetea/www.facebook.com/mesamike Mike Westfall

    Aw, whudda we need another Hobbit movie for? I’ve already seen the Rankin-Bass cartoon version from 35 yeas ago, or so.

  • http:/Forsomereason,IwantedtopresslikeonPetea/www.facebook.com/mesamike Mike Westfall

    Aw, whudda we need another Hobbit movie for? I’ve already seen the Rankin-Bass cartoon version from 35 yeas ago, or so.

  • http://www.toddstadler.com/ tODD

    They already linked a preview of the third installment.

    Also, Mike (@5), did you know that the greatest adventure … is what lies ahead?

  • http://www.toddstadler.com/ tODD

    They already linked a preview of the third installment.

    Also, Mike (@5), did you know that the greatest adventure … is what lies ahead?

  • helen

    Glad I missed the cartoon. Disney ruined Mowgli.

  • helen

    Glad I missed the cartoon. Disney ruined Mowgli.

  • Mike R

    The Tolkien Estate retains the film rights to the Silmarillion (and the Children of Hurin, Unfinished Tales, etc.), and there seems to be absolutely no chance that Christopher Tolkien (J.R.R.’s son and literary executor) will relinquish those rights in his lifetime. See, for example, his thoughts on the existing films at the end of this article. Down the road, who knows what will happen, but a Silmarillion film is certainly not imminent.

    Todd, are you aware that today and tomorrow are yet to be said?

  • Mike R

    The Tolkien Estate retains the film rights to the Silmarillion (and the Children of Hurin, Unfinished Tales, etc.), and there seems to be absolutely no chance that Christopher Tolkien (J.R.R.’s son and literary executor) will relinquish those rights in his lifetime. See, for example, his thoughts on the existing films at the end of this article. Down the road, who knows what will happen, but a Silmarillion film is certainly not imminent.

    Todd, are you aware that today and tomorrow are yet to be said?

  • http://enterthevein.wordpress.com J. Dean

    I think the Silmarillion would be better as a television series. There’s so much in it that you could give it a good ten season run.

  • http://enterthevein.wordpress.com J. Dean

    I think the Silmarillion would be better as a television series. There’s so much in it that you could give it a good ten season run.

  • Tom Hering

    Mike R @ 8, thanks for the link to that article. It was encouraging to read about someone whose aim in life isn’t to maximize personal fame and riches, but rather to guard the work and reputation of a loved one from the evil empire of Lucas-like marketers.

  • Tom Hering

    Mike R @ 8, thanks for the link to that article. It was encouraging to read about someone whose aim in life isn’t to maximize personal fame and riches, but rather to guard the work and reputation of a loved one from the evil empire of Lucas-like marketers.

  • Michael B.

    @Mike Westfall

    Where there’s a whip, there’s a way.

    Oh wait…that’s Return of the King.

  • Michael B.

    @Mike Westfall

    Where there’s a whip, there’s a way.

    Oh wait…that’s Return of the King.

  • http://www.toddstadler.com/ tODD

    ♫Frodoooo of the niiiiine fingers….♪And the ring of dooooom….

  • http://www.toddstadler.com/ tODD

    ♫Frodoooo of the niiiiine fingers….♪And the ring of dooooom….

  • Dan Kempin

    tODD, #12,

    I don’t even know why that is funny, and yet I am laughing.

    Those of you not overly serious should check out French and Saunders treatment of the first movie:

  • Dan Kempin

    tODD, #12,

    I don’t even know why that is funny, and yet I am laughing.

    Those of you not overly serious should check out French and Saunders treatment of the first movie:

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