The Hobbit: The Desolation Of Smaug Featurette Takes On Men And Bears


With the premiere of The Hobbit: The Desolation Of Smaug rapidly approaching, the airwaves and Internet tubes have begun to fill with those all-important featurettes that films depend upon to remind us of their existence. In the latest featurette from Peter Jackson’s team, we get a tour of the house of Beorn, the big bear/man who will figure heavily into at least a portion of the second Hobbit feature.

Those who have read The Hobbit will remember the incident with Beorn – himself a sort of prototype to Tom Bombadil, whose subplot was unfortunately cut from the Lord of the Rings films. Beorn is a shape-shifter who turns himself from bear to man and back again. He extends his hospitality and his help to the dwarves and their halfling companion, but he’s still a bear and as a bear…well, you want to be careful about turning your back on him.

The featurette gives us a behind-the-scenes glimpse of Beorn’s house, with the lead actors discussing what it was like being on a set structured to make grown men look small. Once more on display is the exquisite craftsmanship that Jackson and his team put into the creation of Middle Earth. Intricate carvings and oversized furniture that will only be glimpsed for a moment lend verisimilitude to this strange other world. It’s a lovely little glimpse into what The Hobbit: The Desolation Of Smaug has in store.

But none of this really matters if the film doesn’t deliver on the plot and development fronts. The problems of the first Hobbit film were manifold, and this one does not really look like it has solved them. It still looks like the over-development of a three hundred page book into an epic tale, with needless character additions and villains that fail to pop.

We can all decide if The Hobbit: The Desolation Of Smaug fares any better as a film when it hits theatres on December 13.

Until then, check out the latest featurette below, as well as a new TV spot. Are you ready to journey onwards through Middle Earth?