Studio Confirms the First Hobbit Movie Likely Delayed to Late 2012
01.23.10 by REELZ
There have been rumors before, but this is looking like the real deal. In an interview with Variety about how New Line has been downsizing operations to become a leaner and meaner competitor, top exec Alan Horn confirmed a likely delay in releasing The Hobbit. According to the article:
Horn won't predict when the first of the two Hobbit films will be out, but says the most probable scenario would be a release in the fourth quarter of 2012.
That's a full year after the movie was originally scheduled to be released. The good news, though, is that the delay doesn't seem to be due to any hesitancy about the project. It's part of an overall slowdown at the studio, which involves releasing fewer movies each year, and being a lot more careful to make sure that the really big (and expensive) releases are done right. The Lord of the Rings was the signature success for New Line, and the studio hopes that The Hobbit will help bring back the glory days.
So what's next?
Once the script for the second film is in — Jackson and his longtime collaborators Fran Walsh and Philippa Boyens are working on it with Del Toro — New Line will work up a budget for both films and start casting.
One final implication of this story is that all those thinly sourced casting rumors — the latest is that David Tennant of Dr. Who fame has signed on to play Bilbo — need to be taken with a grain of salt.