Today's Hot TV Spot: Bilbo Leaves the Shire in The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey
10.26.12 by Ryan
We're still a little dizzy from the footage revealed in last month's second full-length trailer for The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey (and the subsequent extra scenes), yet, as the promotional campaign shifts to the small screen, more snippets of footage have arrived in the movie's latest TV spot.
Based on author J.R.R. Tolkien's first trip to Middle-Earth, The Hobbit is a more whimsical tale than the Lord of the Rings trilogy, as evidenced in the TV spot, which sees Gandalf (Ian McKellen) trying to convince Bilbo Baggins (Martin Freeman) to leave the comforts of his beloved Shire, interspersed with footage of Bilbo battling trolls and Gollum (Andy Serkis). As McKellen revealed to Coming Soon during a set visit, the lighter tone should be reflected in the final product.
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The Hobbit is an adventure story for kids and told in the first person by someone who might read it to you before you go to bed. Tolkien's in the story, [going] "I, I, I"... [T]he tone is clearly very, very different, and that will be reflected. It's reflected in the script, it's reflected in the casting, and it will be reflected, presumably, in the finished film[s].
Whether the lighter tone is represented in every part of the recently revealed trilogy of Hobbit movies has yet to be revealed, but it's certainly present in the TV spot below.
Gandalf's role was already going to be expanded back when The Hobbit was only a duology, and while that means newly invented scenes will be added to the movie (though likely inspired by Tolkein's notes), more Gandalf can only be a good thing. "[W]hen Gandalf leaves the dwarves to get on with their job, you get to discover why he is supporting them," explained McKellen. "And that involves an overview of Middle-earth, which Wizards and High Elves get involved with."
There also the matter of the One Ring, which later becomes Frodo's (Elijah Wood) burden. Freeman wouldn't say if the Ring has a negative or positive effect on Bilbo, but conceded it's power would be addressed.
I think it definitely has an effect on him., Maybe I shouldn't say how much of it is negative or positive, but it's clear that it has a pull on him, that, I guess would be recognizable from Lord of The Rings. But it takes a different turn.... It definitely still has to matter that he is in possession of this thing and I think a lot of the time, even he doesn't realize why he wants to hold onto it so much, but there is an unspoken hold that it has on him. An unconscious hold.
In further Hobbit news, it looks like there will be a key difference between An Unexpected Journey and The Lord of the Rings: a shorter length. "It’s looking like it’s going to be about ten minutes shorter than Fellowship was," director Peter Jackson told Empire. "So it’s going to be officially our shortest Middle-earth yet. I mean, Fellowship was just under three hours and this is about 2 hours 40 minutes at the moment."
The key phrase is "at the moment" which means it could longer (or even shorter) before its released this December. Not to worry, however, like The Lord of the Rings trilogy, An Unexpected Journey will receive an extended edition when it arrives on DVD and Blu-Ray.