Peter Jackson Dropped From The Hobbit

Despite the announcement a few months ago that MGM were planning to work with Peter Jackson on The Hobbit, a recent e-mail from Peter Jackson and Fran Walsh to LOTR fansite has just shattered this rumour and is sure to send all of the fanboys into a tizzy. Apparently Wingnut Films (Jackson’s production company) has been involved in a lawsuit with New Line regarding income from The Fellowship of the Ring, and although Jackson wanted and always expected to work on The Hobbit (and possibly a 2nd LOTR prequel), they hadn’t planned on doing it until the lawsuit was resolved.

Unfortunately, last week, New Line called to inform them that they simply couldn’t wait any longer for the lawsuit to work itself out. Since they had a “limited time option on the film rights they have obtained from Saul Zaentz”, they are now “actively looking to hire another filmmaker for both projects”. So Peter Jackson, Wingnut Films and WETA will all apparently not be involved. The truth of the situation is, this is probably not the last we’ll be hearing about it from either party, and it sounds like a strategic move from both sides to try and apply pressure to have the lawsuit resolved. New Line threatens to take away The Hobbit, so Peter Jackson goes and rallies his fans.

Personally I’m not even adverse to the idea of someone else doing The Hobbit, after all, it has a bit of a different feel than The Lord of the Rings trilogy. However, I just don’t honestly think New Line would go with anyone else in the end. Jackson has proven he can handle this massive franchise competently, and he has all the fans behind him. And I can’t see any other effects studio handling the effects quite as well as WETA did. No, I think this is all B.S. and Peter Jackson will probably still direct it. But hey, maybe they really do have a limited time option, and maybe we will see some new blood tackling Tolkien. Who would you like to see direct The Hobbit instead?

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  • Henrik

    I thought LOTR was pretty ridiculous… I read the Hobbit and it is equally superficial and lame, so I would prefer not having to deal with the fucking nerds popping up everywhere because they now have been justified.

    The Hobbit has a big fight near the end (surprise!) and you know the movie will just be 1½ hour build-up for this CGI-fest… Maybe if somebody other than Jackson did it – maybe M. Night Shyamalan – it could be different, but I doubt the studio would allow it to break from the formula. Plus there really isn’t a need for an event director. If it’s not Peter Jackson, they would probably get a newcomer.

  • Aaron

    To be honest I didn’t care for Jackson’s three hour take on King Kong. Maybe if someone else does The Hobbit we won’t have to sit through three hours that could be done in two or less. (Meaning the hobbit doesn’t need to be three hours, personally I would have been fine with six two hour LOTR movies, but I liked those books.)

    I don’t have much preference when it comes to who the new directer is, but I really hope it’s not M. Night Shyamaian. I don’t want to have to seep through references about God to find the story of dwarfs, gold, and a dragon that I love so much. It’s not about formula, it’s about telling the story Tolkien wrote.

  • I can’t say I’m all that surprised about this and to be honest, I think this is a good move. We already know what the Jackson treatment would look like and for me, it would be nice to see someone else have a shot at it. Who knows, maybe there’s someone out there that can do it better. I’m not holding my breath but I can hope.