Update: I’ve written a more recent post about the dwarves with lots more pictures. Read it here!
Less than 10 months until The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey comes out! I’m pretty excited, if you hadn’t realized that yet. It’s been about 2 months since the trailer was released; I think it’s about time Peter Jackson released something else. I’d be happy with a teaser with the same scenes in the trailer, just reworked a bit. And some new music.
Well I don’t think that’s going to happen anytime soon. So I guess I’ll just look at the casting decisions since everything is now finalized.
First off, I have to say that I am the teeniest bit disappointed that Guillermo del Toro is no longer directing. Don’t get me wrong- I think Peter Jackson did an amazing job with the original trilogy and it is only fitting that he provide the necessary continuity between The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit. But after seeing Pan’s Labyrinth, Hellboy I and II, The Devil’s Backbone, and The Orphanage, I became very curious to see what del Toro would do with The Hobbit. I suppose it’s better with Jackson though, as I’m fairly certain I would have been outraged if anyone besides Jackson had dared to direct something that he had made so thoroughly his own.
So on with the cast!
Up first, the returning players:
Sir Ian McKellen as Gandalf
Hugo Weaving as Elrond
Cate Blanchett as Galadriel
Ian Holm as Old Bilbo
Elijah Wood as Frodo
Andy Serkis as Gollum
Orlando Bloom as Legolas
Christopher Lee as Saruman
If I remember correctly, Galadriel and Saruman do not show up in The Hobbit (the book) and it is generally assumed that Peter Jackson will be including bits of The White Council. Frodo was not in The Hobbit either, so I’m guessing that Peter Jackson is really trying to make the movie The Hobbit accessible to fans who only watched the trilogy. Old Bilbo will most likely be telling Frodo (pre-trilogy events) of how he came to be possessor of the One Ring. And I think it’s pretty clear that the White Council bits have been added in to provide some background on where Sauron came from. And Gollum! How exciting it will be to see Bilbo finding the Ring and the riddle contest.
Next, the dwarves:
Richard Armitage as Thorin Oakenshield
Adam Brown as Ori
Jed Brophy as Nori
Mark Hadlow as Dori
Aidan Turner as Kili
Dean O’Gorman as Fili
William Kircher as Bifur
James Nesbitt as Bofur
Stephen Hunter as Bombur
Graham McTavish as Dwalin
Ken Stott as Balin
John Callen as Oin
Peter Hambleton as Gloin
What we’ve seen of the dwarves so far is fantastic. Visually, these guys look like they came straight from under a mountain. A lot was said early on about how these guys were too good looking to play dwarves but I really don’t think there is anything wrong with that.
Rounding out the main company with the dwarves and Gandalf:
Martin Freeman as Bilbo
If the little we’ve seen in the trailer is any indication, Martin Freeman is going to own this role.
Next, the elves:
Lee Pace as The Elvenking Thranduil
Evangeline Lilly as Tauriel
Very little detail is given about individual elves who show up in Mirkwood. We’ll see Thranduil there and also at the final battle, although it isn’t until Lord of the Rings that we actually learn his name. Tolkien’s silence about the elves has opened up a lot of room for Jackson to play around; Tauriel will most likely be one of the elves in the dwarf-capturing party (since there is no mention of her in the book), as will Legolas. Elrond will be seen during the stop at Rivendell and Galadriel is a member of The White Council.
Finishing up with some supporting characters:
Billy Connolly as Dain Ironfoot
Luke Evans as Bard the Bowman
Mikael Persbrandt as Beorn
Stephen Fry as the Master at Laketown
Sylvester McCoy as Radagast the Brown
Benedict Cumberbatch as the voice of Smaug
Some of these characters probably won’t be seen until There and Back Again comes out in December 2013. Getting to see Mirkwood and Smaug will be incredibly exciting.
I really can’t wait to see what Peter Jackson does with The Hobbit. I think it’s so expected that he’ll do a fantastic job that I’m not really worried about it, but I do want to see it as soon as possible! Be sure to check out the amazing fan site TheOneRing.net for up to date casting info. And the imdb page has good information as well for the movie.