Fans of Middle Earth rejoice! The colossal, $500 million undertaking that is the two-part adaptation of J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Hobbit has wrapped principal photography. Via Facebook, director Peter Jackson announced to the masses that he has indeed concluded the ambitious 266-day shoot for the hotly anticipated fantasy adventure.
The first half of the pair will hit theaters this winter and is titled The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, with the conclusion (subtitled There and Back Again) scheduled to debut exactly one year later in December 2013.
The jovial-sounding Jackson had this to say:
“We made it! Shoot day 266 and the end of principal photography on The Hobbit. Thanks to our fantastic cast and crew for getting us this far, and to all of you for your support! Next stop, the cutting room. Oh, and Comic Con!”
That’s right, if five months is too long for you to wait, then you can, at the very least, tide yourself over when Jackson and co. make an appearance at 2012’s Comic Con in San Diego, where I’m sure they will unveil some of that freshly filmed footage.
Expectations are huge for The Hobbit considering the financial and critical success of the Lord of the Rings trilogy, but if anyone can pull off such an undertaking it’s Jackson. With all the applicable cast members like Ian McKellen and Andy Serkis returning (in addition to some fantastic new additions including Martin Freeman as Bilbo Baggins) and improved visual effects, we should expect nothing short of a spectacle.
The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey treads into theaters December 14.