The Hobbit adaptation receives green light
18th October 2010
Studio heads have finally approved filming of the big screen adaptation of J.R.R. Tolkien's The Hobbit, according to the Hollywood Reporter.
A joint announcement by New Line president Toby Emmerich, Warner Bros president Alan Horn and MGM co-chief executive Steve Cooper revealed that the project will start early next year and will see the book split into two productions.
The statement explained: 'The two films based on The Hobbit are now greenlit and will begin principal photography in February 2011, under the direction of Peter Jackson.'
Jackson, who directed the Lord of the Rings trilogy, was originally intending to produce the adaptation, with Guillermo del Toro set to direct. However, Del Toro moved on to other projects after the production plans stalled earlier this year.
Commenting on the adaptation, Jackson said The Hobbit will be an 'all-immersive journey' that 'goes way beyond a normal film-making experience'.
However, the approval of the film comes as several acting guilds and international unions are calling on performers to avoid working on the project unless they are offered union contracts.
The dispute was labelled by Jackson as a 'grab for power' from the unions and caused speculation that the project could be filmed outside of his native New Zealand, where The Lord of the Rings was shot.