‘Hobbit’ exclusive clip: Gandalf warns Saruman of a powerful evil

Dec. 06, 2012 | 11:47 a.m.

The theatrical release of “The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey” is only a week away, but for those Peter Jackson fans who can’t stand the wait, here’s a Hero Complex exclusive sneak peek at a scene from the film.

The clip, which runs 1 minute and 11 seconds, foreshadows the events of “The Lord of the Rings,” set 60 years after “The Hobbit,” and features Ian McKellen as Gandalf, Cate Blanchett as Galadriel, Hugo Weaving as Elrond and Christopher Lee as Saruman sitting in council in the Elven city of Rivendell.

Against a gorgeous backdrop of a waterfall at sunset, the scene reveals Gandalf’s motivation in helping Thorin Oakenshield and his company of dwarfs reclaim their home kingdom from the dragon Smaug.

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“Smaug owes allegiance to no one, but if he should side with the enemy, the dragon could be used to terrible effect,” Gandalf tells the skeptical council.

“What enemy? Gandalf, the enemy is defeated,” Saruman tells the gray wizard. “Sauron is vanquished. He can never regain his full strength.”

Fans of “The Lord of the Rings” will see the folly of Saruman’s reasoning and the wisdom in Gandalf’s caution.

“There is something at work beyond the evil of Smaug, something far more powerful,” Gandalf warns the others. “We can remain blind, but it will not be ignoring us, that I can promise you.”

The first installment in Peter Jackson’s trilogy based on J.R.R. Tolkien’s “The Hobbit” opens Dec. 14.

— Noelene Clark


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23 Responses to ‘Hobbit’ exclusive clip: Gandalf warns Saruman of a powerful evil

  1. trev says:

    What has that got to do with 'THE HOBBIT'. I mean i don't mind expansion on ideas. But really. In Fellowship of the Ring Gandalf had to research what was going on with the ring as if it was a forgotten piece of history. Here he is clearly on the case. Feels wrong. Also this is not what the story of the hobbit is about. Nat at all. It gives it a deeper underscore that is not present. Also i don't like the whole… What is smaug fights for the enemy thing. A total conflict of the in the ideas of the book. Dragons are only interested in their own agenda. Clearly stated in the hobbit.

    • Peter says:

      Not at all. While it is true that these details were left out of The Hobbit, if you look at other works by Tolkien (specifically the appendices of Return of the King you'll see that everything in this scene is 100% canon. If you recall, Gandalf did leave Thorin and Co. numerous times throughout The Hobbit, but the reasons for his absence were never explained beyond "he's doing wizardy things". All Peter Jackson is doing here is including the information that explains what Gandalf is doing while he's not with the dwarves and Bilbo, and again it is completely true to what Tolkien had written.

      • Bam says:

        Circle gets the square.

      • Dare Kurnik says:

        I do agree. And whats more, Tolkien himself wanted to rewrite The Hobbit to agree more with the Lord of the Rings. In the end, he only changed a few things, most notably the events in Gollums cave. But I believe that this is what Tolkien would have wanted, an all inclusive, exhaustive account of the full story. And PJ is definitely capable od depicting it in a faithful way, We will see in a few weeks anyway. And which fan wouldn't be thrilled to have 3 movies instead of one? You have the Hobbit to read when you want the original composition, and the film to watch when you want a somewhat different, but still tolkienish approach. I'm a student of comparative literrature and Tolkien's works are a great passion of mine. So believe me when I tell you that this isn't just PJ's excuse to earn more money and stretch the story.

      • David says:

        Indeed, and in addition, Gandalf's comment that Sauron could use the dragon to "terrible effect" is an exact quote from "The Quest of Erebor," a later work by Tolkien that fills in some of the gaps in The Hobbit story. It can be found in Unfinished Tales and in The Annotated Hobbit.

      • Michelle says:

        Yes, but it has no bearing on the story. The Hobbit was told just fine without it, it certainly didn't need to be included in the movie. In my opinion it just distracts from the heart of the story, which is Bilbo. If Peter wanted to explore this side of Middle-earth's history (which I'm not opposed to per-se) it should be in its own movie. This would be like including more events from the Second Age into The Fellowship to explain in detail how the rings were forged, and who made what. Instead they were briefly spoken about. IF this was so necessary, it could have also been a very brief inclusion. Certainly not enough to warrant actually filming the event.

    • Sam says:

      I'm guessing you've never read the appendices or Unfinished Tales…

    • Alex says:

      Here Gandalf is talking about the Necromancer suspecting it is Sauron himself, after all of this and the recapture of Dol Guldur by Galadriel and Thranduil, Sauron escape to Mordor and start all the events of LOTR.
      In Fellowship of the Ring, Gandalf explained "there are many magic rings…" he started to investigated if it ring is the one ring… Gandalf in the White Council is not talking about the ring, he is talking about Sauron.

    • Nick says:

      If you were such a Tolkien purist, you would have known that this is actually what Tolkien wrote, except in his other writings. But since you don't know that, the only conclusion to your negative comment is that you can't enjoy anything and therefore you try to ruin it for others too. I mean, look at this short clip, it's amazing!! How did you not like this is beyond me!

    • Valentine says:

      Tolkien did stated that Smaug may eventually join Sauron in his Northern campaign, for a prize of course – a dwarven ring of power (Sauron held one). Also the fact that Gandalf is aware of Sauron, does not mean he knows that Bilbo's ring is The One. It has never been a forgotten story by The White Council …

    • Sara says:

      Knowing that a villain is returning is not the same as knowing exactly what their plan is. Also, dragons fought for Morgoth, so it is a possibility they would fight for Sauron. Read the appendices and the Silmarillion before you say it feels wrong.

      • David Hollinger says:

        Not only did Dragons fight for Morgoth, they were created by him, and in 2 cases, held similar positions as Sauron did in Morgoth's Campaign (Glaurung and Ancalagon)

    • Marian says:

      In this scene, I don't think Gandalf yet knows that the *ring* is evil – he's just getting a feeling that Sauron is still alive.

      Awesome clip, by the way!

    • sludge says:

      WRONG – this is 100% canon – if you'd actually read any Tolkien beyond The Hobbit you'd probably know that this took place.

      • Adam says:

        This is in no way 100% canon. Gandalf went to Dol Guldur twice to investigate it. The second time, he got the map and key of the Lonely Mountain from Thorin's father, Thrain. At that time, he learned that the Necromancer was Sauron, and not one of the wraiths as they suspected. This happened nearly 100 years BEFORE the beginning of The Hobbit (T.A. 2850 compared with 2941).

        At this point all the characters in this scene would know with complete certainty that Sauron is the Necromancer and that he is rebuilding his strength. This suspicion of Gandalf and doubting of the other members of the White Council is a complete and utter fabrication on the part of the filmmakers.

        Scenes like this are at best tangentially connected with the story of The Hobbit and shouldn't be included in the film. It just makes it clear that P.J. and company care more about making a LotR prequel trilogy than making an adaptation of The Hobbit.

      • Kat says:

        For the most part, I can see and agree with your argument, however, the last statement is contradictory since Tolkien himself intended the LoTR to be a sequel to the Hobbit, making the Hobbit, by default, the prequel. They are one in the same.

        Though there is some fore-shortening in the time frame, it makes more sense to a movie audience (I am a film maker, so I would know), and it is more important, to get the characters and the story itself correct rather than the dates. Since either way, Gandalf knew the Necromancer needed to be dealt with before the desolation of Smaug, the dates and foreshortening don't make much difference, just as the fact that the time between Bilbo leaving Hobbiton for the last time and Frodo moving out of Bag End was shortened makes no difference to the actual succession of events in Lord of the Rings

    • andy tinker says:

      shut up you narrow minded idiot!!! Gandalf knows for a long time that something is stirring.the only reason you don't get to read this in the hobbit is because it was a children's book which Tolkien expanded on later,there for if Tolkien saw fit to expand on it I'm pretty sure its OK for peter Jackson to use that in a movie of his writings..!!!!I'm tired of people complaining about stuff like this.if you don't like it don't watch it!!simple as that.

    • Chas says:

      you didn't read the books

  2. Andrew says:

    Also, "Fellowship of the Ring" is 60 YEARS after "The Hobbit." Even Gandalf might have forgotten a detail or two about a concern from that long ago….

  3. Steve says:

    There is a lot of it in The Quest of Erebor, I think that is either in The Silmarillion or Unfinished Tales.

  4. Sarah says:

    While none of this was expressly talked about in the Hobbit, and while I am distressed at the idea of the Hobbit, a lighthearted and short adventure story, being drawn out into an epic trilogy, I am actually looking forward to seeing PJ's take on what Gandalf was doing while he was mysteriously absent from the dwarves, From watching this scene, it encourages me that he actually did do his homework on Tolkien's other writings when planning the movie and I think it will be amazing to see that part of the story brought to life. It certainly appears that, as many of you have mentioned, that he is only referring to the possibility of Sauron's return, not anything related to the Ring found by Bilbo. And even if it doesn't follow the book religiously, more time in Middle Earth can never be a bad thing! at least in my opinion.

  5. Paulinstony says:

    You miss the point trev. In The Hobbit Gandalf is researching the re emergence of Sauron and not the Ring. The ring is not part of his thoughts at that time. Sauron has re emerged after a very long time dormant and Gandalf begins to realise this. The LOTR is 60 years later when it has now been accepted that Sauron has risen again, but the next stage in that – ie now hes arisen he is starting to look for his old ring. So yes it is a completely sensible progression.

  6. derek says:

    does anyone wanna cuppa?

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