The Hobbit

Dec. 09, 2014 | 8:08 a.m.

‘Hobbit: Battle of the Five Armies’: Luke Evans on Bard, battle

Adapting J.R.R. Tolkien’s 300-page story “The Hobbit” into a movie trilogy gave the filmmakers plenty of room to develop supporting characters into major players, not least of whom was Bard the Bowman, portrayed on the big screen by Luke Evans. Evans, whose previous titles include “Dracula Untold,” “Fast & Furious 6” and “Immortals,” debuted as the devoted father in Middle-earth’s impoverished Esgaroth in last year’s “The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug.” The film saw Bard, who possesses the last black arrow capable of killing the dragon Smaug (played through performance-capture technology by Benedict Cumberbatch), smuggling Thorin Oakenshield (Richard Armitage) and his company of dwarves into Lake-town — one step closer to reclaiming their homeland. But Bard’s decision to help Thorin and his company inadvertently leads to the destruction of his home after the dwarves unleash the dragon’s wrath. “The Hobbit: […]
Dec. 05, 2014 | 5:30 a.m.

‘Hobbit: Battle of the Five Armies’ exclusive clip: Smaug attacks

A screenshot of a clip from "The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies." (Warner Bros.)
A new clip from “The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies” offers a glimpse of the dragon Smaug as he rains down fire on Lake-town. Hero Complex readers get an exclusive first look at the clip, which also features Luke Evans’ Bard, the bowman who smuggled the dwarf company into Lake-town on his barge in “The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug,” the second installment in Peter Jackson’s trilogy based on J.R.R. Tolkien’s “The Hobbit.” At the end of “Smaug,” Bilbo Baggins and Thorin Oakenshield looked on in horror as the villainous dragon flew from the Lonely Mountain, proclaiming, “I will show you revenge!” “Five Armies,” which ends the saga, picks up with Smaug’s fiery assault on Lake-town, where Bard is trapped in a cell. After Bard escapes, he finds his way to the rooftops of a burning Esgaroth, and […]
Dec. 03, 2014 | 12:15 p.m.

‘Hobbit: Battle of the Five Armies’ clip highlights Bilbo’s bravery

Martin Freeman as Bilbo in "'The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies." (Mark Pokorny / Warner Bros.)
A new clip from “The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies” features an exchange between Bilbo Baggins (Martin Freeman) and the wizard Gandalf (Ian McKellen), revealing a glimpse of how far the hobbit has come in terms of courage. The scene takes place in the city of Dale beneath the Lonely Mountain, where armies of men, dwarves and elves are staving off legions of invading orcs. When a new threat is discovered, Gandalf tries to enlist Elvenking Thranduil (Lee Pace) to warn Dwarf king Thorin (Richard Armitage) and his warriors. “I have spent enough Elvish blood in defense of this accursed land,” Thranduil says before taking his leave. “No more.” Then, the story’s diminutive hero steps in. “I’ll go,” Bilbo says. “Don’t be ridiculous. You’ll never make it,” Gandalf retorts. “It’s out of the question. I won’t allow it.” […]
Nov. 06, 2014 | 11:12 a.m.

‘Hobbit: Five Armies’ trailer teases deadly battle, Thorin’s downfall

A new trailer for “The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies” offers a glimpse of the fracturing relationship between dwarf king Thorin Oakenshield and the company of small folk who followed him to Erebor. “Five Armies,” the final film in Peter Jackson’s trilogy based on J. R. R. Tolkien’s “The Hobbit,” picks up where last year’s “The Desolation of Smaug” ends, with dwarf king Thorin (Armitage) and company, accompanied by Martin Freeman’s good-natured hobbit, Bilbo Baggins, having reclaimed the treasure of their lost homeland Erebor from the evil dragon Smaug (Benedict Cumberbatch). A vengeful Smaug heads to Lake-town to decimate the nearby village of Men, and the destruction the dragon causes leaves the townspeople insisting upon recompense from the dwarves who disturbed his resting place, setting into motion the conflict that will grow to include the armies of the […]
Oct. 31, 2014 | 6:30 a.m.

‘Hobbit’: Peter Jackson promises thrilling finale with ‘Five Armies’

Director Peter Jackson, center, and Martin Freeman on the set of the fantasy adventure movie "The Hobbit: The Battle of The Five Armies." (Mark Pokorny/Warner Bros.)
Judging strictly from the title, it might seem safe to assume that “The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies,” the concluding installment in Peter Jackson’s latest trilogy of films based on the writing of J.R.R. Tolkien, would arrive as something of a war film, Middle-earth style. But Jackson insists that the blockbuster fantasy, which opens in theaters Dec. 17, is far more interested in charting the descent of proud dwarf Thorin Oakenshield (Richard Armitage) into a crippling madness than it is in conjuring images of battlefield brutality. “It’s very much like a thriller. That’s the tone of it,” Jackson said, speaking by phone from New Zealand, where he was in the final throes of completing the film. “I’m not letting that tone go for a second. It gives me a chance to feel like I’m making a different movie, […]
Oct. 23, 2014 | 7:25 a.m.

‘The Hobbit’ stars cameo in new Air New Zealand safety video

Air New Zealand's safety video pays tribute to "The Hobbit" film trilogy. (Air New Zealand)
A new safety video from Air New Zealand once again features a host of stars from “The Hobbit” films, including Frodo Baggins actor Elijah Wood and director Peter Jackson, in a tribute to Middle-earth. Titled “The Most Epic Safety Video Ever Made,” the video instructs passengers including dwarves, orcs and elves in the proper use of seat belts, oxygen masks and life jackets. The video was released online Wednesday and is being rolled out across Air New Zealand’s fleet. The safety video — the airline’s second “Hobbit”-themed video after 2012’s “An Unexpected Briefing” — comes ahead of the final film in Jackson’s “Hobbit” trilogy, “The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies,” which opens Dec. 17. VIDEO: Watch Benedict Cumberbatch writhe and snarl as Smaug The video begins with two “Hobbit” fans rushing through the Wellington Airport, pausing to take a picture […]
Oct. 21, 2014 | 10:00 a.m.

‘Hobbit’: See Benedict Cumberbatch writhe and snarl as Smaug

Benedict Cumberbatch on the set of "The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug." (Screenshot from bonus feature footage)
The extended edition of “The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug” is available for digital download today and out on Blu-ray Nov. 4, but Hero Complex readers get an exclusive first look at a clip from the bonus features. The clip showcases actor Benedict Cumberbatch’s performance as the deadly dragon Smaug, a miserly lizard who guards his hoarded, stolen gold in a mountain lair that was once home to the dwarf king of Erebor. Like Gollum actor Andy Serkis, Cumberbatch employed performance-capture technology to play the enormous dragon in Peter Jackson’s film trilogy based on J.R.R. Tolkien’s novel “The Hobbit.” “You kind of have to … imagine yourself into a vast creature in a huge space when you’re really crawling about on a gray bit of carpet,” Cumberbatch says in the video. Serkis — who has pioneered performance-capture acting with his […]
Sept. 16, 2014 | 12:16 p.m.

‘Hobbit: Five Armies’ banner captures Middle-earth in widescreen

A panel from "The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies" tapestry. (Warner Bros.)
A massive new poster for “The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies” depicts the ambitious scope of Peter Jackson’s upcoming Middle-earth film, the final installment in the writer-director’s latest trilogy based on the works of J.R.R. Tolkien. The striking tapestry includes not only Martin Freeman’s Bilbo Baggins and Ian McKellen’s wizard Gandalf, but also nearly all of the key characters — including Thorin Oakenshield (Richard Armitage) and his company of dwarves; elves Legolas (Orlando Bloom), Tauriel (Evangeline Lilly) and Thranduil (Lee Pace); even Benedict Cumberbatch’s dragon Smaug. Click through the gallery above to see portions of the image — click here for the full, scrollable view. Set to open Dec. 17, the film enjoyed a high-profile presence at San Diego’s Comic-Con International in July, where Comedy Central host and massive Tolkien nerd Stephen Colbert was on hand to moderate the […]
Aug. 06, 2014 | 12:00 p.m.

‘Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor’ creators mine Tolkien lore for game

The Wraith, Celebrimbor, Talion in "Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor." (Warner Bros. Interactive)
Last month, filmmaker and J.R.R. Tolkien ambassador Peter Jackson made his final appearance at San Diego’s Comic-Con International to promote one of his feature film adaptations of the literary master’s work. But December’s “The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies” wasn’t the only project inspired by the imagined geography of Tolkien’s universe to make news at the pop culture expo. During the “Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor” panel, it was revealed that the Wraith, a character in the newest “Lord of the Rings” franchise video game, was actually Celebrimbor, the greatest Elven smith of the Second Age. He was deceived by Sauron into working with him to forge the Rings of Power, then murdered along with his family. His spirit was residing in Mordor, awaiting vengeance against the Dark Lord, when Talion, who was also murdered at the hands of […]
July 28, 2014 | 2:14 p.m.

‘Hobbit: Battle of the Five Armies’ trailer brings war to Middle-earth

Ian McKellen  and Luke Evans in "The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies."  (Mark Pokorny /Warner Bros.)
The first official teaser trailer has arrived for “The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies,” the film that will bring to a close Bilbo Baggins’ journey and mark the conclusion of Peter Jackson’s years-long cinematic exploration of J.R.R. Tolkien’s world of Middle-earth. Set to open Dec. 17, the film enjoyed a high-profile presence at San Diego’s Comic-Con International this past weekend, where Comedy Central host and massive Tolkien nerd Stephen Colbert was on hand to moderate the Hall H presentation devoted to the series, dressed head to toe in the Lake-town garb he wore in his brief cameo in the last “Hobbit” film. Joining Colbert and Jackson on the stage were a full assortment of familiar faces from both the “Hobbit” and the “Lord of the Rings” films, including Cate Blanchett, Andy Serkis, Benedict Cumberbatch, Lee Pace, Luke Evans, Elijah Wood, Graham McTavish, […]
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