As per Hitfix, we have titles and release dated for Peter Jackson's much-delayed but finally-near-completed adaptation of The Hobbit. Much like the trend recently with film adaptations of epically popular books, Jackson and New Line are splitting J.R.R. Tolkien's book into two parts.
it's gonna look like this, right?
Part one, The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey will hit theatres next Christmas on December 14, 2012. The second installment, The Hobbit: There and Back, will open just under a year from its predecessor on December 13, 2013. The Oscar-winning scriptwriting trio of Jackson, Fran Walsh, and Philippa Boyens will be joined by The Hobbit's one-time director and scribe, Guillermo del Toro as writers on the screenplay. Jackson, of course, returns to direct and a number of the original actors from Lord of the Rings return to New Zealand.
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Given that Lord of the Rings was such a monolith when it came to the Oscars, I'm very interested to see how The Hobbit plays in 2012 and 2013. Will it be another dominate franchise, or are the Oscars over Jackson and Middle Earth? I'm a little skeptical, especially since the industry will be voting for the first one knowing that it'll have the second to honor the next year. I should probably begin the book before 2012, but that never effected my enjoyment of the original trilogy. Surely it will make a statement in the technical categories, but what of the screenplay, acting, and other big races? We'll have to wait a year and a half to find out.