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Peter Jackson Will Not Be Making The Hobbit 467

An anonymous reader writes "Due to legal wranglings with New Line Cinema over accounting issues for Lord Of The Rings, Peter Jackson and Fran Walsh will not be involved in the making of either The Hobbit or the planned Lord of the Rings prequel." I suppose there is still a chance that Jackson & Co. could end up involved, but at this point that looks unlikely.
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Peter Jackson Will Not Be Making The Hobbit

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  • prequel? (Score:3, Insightful)

    by SeaPig ( 649774 ) <> on Monday November 20, 2006 @10:38AM (#16914138)
    I am confused - The Hobbit is the LOTR prequel - Are they doing two prequels?
    • Re:prequel? (Score:5, Informative)

      by spellraiser ( 764337 ) on Monday November 20, 2006 @10:43AM (#16914232) Journal

      Apparently they are [].

      Peter Jackson says:

      Several years ago, Mark Ordesky told us that New Line have rights to make not just The Hobbit but a second "LOTR prequel", covering the events leading up to those depicted in LOTR.
    • Re:prequel? (Score:5, Informative)

      by Delirium Tremens ( 214596 ) on Monday November 20, 2006 @10:48AM (#16914326) Journal
      I am confused - The Hobbit is the LOTR prequel - Are they doing two prequels?
      The 5 Silmarillion [] books come to mind.
      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        by somersault ( 912633 )
        Funnily enough I was thinking that too. I don't know if I want to read them any time soon though, apparently they're very heavy going compared to LOTR (and I got bored 20 pages from the end of LOTR book 2, that Tolkien fellow needs to cut back on his descriptions of geography). The Hobbit was an excellent book though. Second time I read it (must have been when I was 9 I went through it in a day.. no idea how old I was the first time..
      • I can't imagine the silmarillion being made into a movie of any value. The stories are simply too involved and too mythologically based. Its hard enough to read through them and I'm a huge LotR fan. I did enjoy the book, just took a couple of rereads to completely understand.

        I just hope LotR doesn't become a cash cow where new line takes any material they can get their hands on and makes it into a movie.
    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by jfengel ( 409917 )
      Nearly everything Tolkien wrote is prequel to LOTR.

      None of the other books besides Hobbit are remotely filmable. They're mostly short stories or summaries of longer stories for which you'd have to write a lot of your own material to make a film.

      If you had a talented writer, Tolkien left many, many fascinating stories about the Elves and early Men which could make good movies. I'm afraid I don't really consider Walsh/Boyens/Jackson in that category. As much as I enjoyed their movies, they got weaker whenev
    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by Kapsar ( 585863 )
      There are a large number of other Prequels to the LoTR. After writing the hobbit as a bed time story for his kids, he went and wrote the Silmarillian, history of the elves evil before Sauron and how the Orcs came to be. This is basically a history book on the world of middle earth. They make references it in LOTR actually, but they are subtle and unless you've read it you wouldn't catch them. There's also the Unfinished stories mostly about the First Men, and theres the lost stories expansions on storie
  • by Viol8 ( 599362 )
    "The Hobbit or the planned Lord of the Rings prequel"

    Sorry?? The Hobbit *IS* the prequel to LOTR. Please tell they're not going
    to get some Hollywood paint-by-numbers screenwriters commitee to butcher Tolkeins
    ideas and come up with some Phantom Menace debarcle? Will they have Gollum with
    dreadlocks and speaking in some fau-jamaican patois and Gandalf as some all-american
    apple pie and freckles kid who Has Yet To Discover His Powers blah blah etc etc.
  • First reaction... (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Randolpho ( 628485 ) on Monday November 20, 2006 @10:41AM (#16914194) Homepage Journal
    .... WTF? What do you mean "The Hobbit or the planned Lord of the Rings prequel"? Aren't the two the same thing? Or is this an allusion to The Silmarillion? Alas, the article is slashed, so I can't find out!!!
    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by witte ( 681163 )
      >Or is this an allusion to The Silmarillion?

      Making a movie out of the Silmarillion would be like making a cartoon adaptation of a Fiscal Accounting handbook.
      • Re:First reaction... (Score:5, Interesting)

        by Woldry ( 928749 ) on Monday November 20, 2006 @01:10PM (#16916764) Journal
        You know, I've never understood all the Silmarillion-bashing. Call me a drooling fanboy, but I enjoyed the Silmarillion far more than the Hobbit, and about as much as LOTR. Tolkien captured the feel and pace of the medieval literature he studied and loved all his life. If you are at all familiar with the Norse sagas, or with a lot of the original Arthurian literature (as opposed to the pap novels put out in the past 50 years), or with Spenser and Chaucer and Beowulf and Sturluson, The Silmarillion conveys their flavor with remarkable authenticity, and adds some theological, philosophical and moral depth. Reading some of Tolkien's predecessors in fantasy (E. R. Eddison, George Macdonald, William Morris, even H. Rider Haggard to some degree), you can also see where he learned some of his stylistic habits; Morris's style is echoed especially. The style is archaic, certainly, and that could make it difficult for a modern reader, but that is not a flaw per se. It's an aesthetic choice that has its own cadences and beauties.

        Attempting to read the work as a modern novel will not serve the reader well. If people go into it expecting a genre fantasy novel, they are bound to be disappointed. But it is a tremendous and unique accomplishment in fantasy. Read it with an eye to its place in the fantastic tradition, and with an understanding that you are not reading a novel, but a chronological and cosmological saga (in the old, strict literary sense, not the back-of-the-paperback-blurb sense), and its power and creativity are breathtaking.
  • MGM be warned : (Score:3, Insightful)

    by unity100 ( 970058 ) on Monday November 20, 2006 @10:42AM (#16914218) Homepage Journal
    Lack of Jackson in hobbit will cost more than the gain you will make wrangling over the accounting issues.
  • by rkhalloran ( 136467 ) on Monday November 20, 2006 @10:43AM (#16914234) Homepage
    After I RTFA, it looks like they're trying to spank Jackson for calling them on their accounting practices. He wouldn't settle on their terms, so "his services will not be needed".

    The guy made them a bleepin' 10^9 bucks with the trilogy, and they assume they can slot in any schmoe that can aim a camera? And I suppose they're too damn cheap to go back to WETA Digital for the FX too, they'll get some folks from over at Sci-Fi Channel and it'll be just fine.

    At this point we can only hope the project collapses from being nickle-and-dimed to extinction.
    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      And I suppose they're too damn cheap to go back to WETA Digital for the FX too, they'll get some folks from over at Sci-Fi Channel and it'll be just fine.
      I vote for the MST3K team!!! Just imagine...
    • by Lumpy ( 12016 ) on Monday November 20, 2006 @11:10AM (#16914672) Homepage
      The guy made them a bleepin' 10^9 bucks with the trilogy, and they assume they can slot in any schmoe that can aim a camera?

      Yes they do and yes they can.

      There are 60,000 wannabe directors out there and with the DP and production staff from the original filming it would not be too hard. Hollywierd is known for butchering and making a mess of things.

      Hollywood is known for borderline illegal accounting practices, NO move has ever made a profit, so if you get net points on a film you are royally "fubared" you want gross points as those are the real pay dollars..... dont believe me? ask Stan Lee about the profits he recieved from his Net points on the Spiderman movies and the lawsuits he has going against the studio about it...

      There is a long tradition of making up expenses to suck up all profits a film m akes.
      • I seem to remember somehting about the studio selling the merchandising rights for a very small sum (to a subsidiary or partner company without direct GL connection). The vast sums of money from marketing the merchandise were never accounted for on the film studio side, except for the (absurdly low) fixed fee paid. Thus the studio execs made money, while denying anyone with net points on the film a whiff of the money from merchandising. All legal, all underhanded.
      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        Hollywood is known for borderline illegal accounting practices, NO move has ever made a profit, so if you get net points on a film you are royally "fubared"

        While it may well have been the case in this particular occurence, and while I enjoy a good conspiracy theory as much as the next /.er, it's worth pointing out that quite often hugely successful movies will indeed turn out a net loss for the studios, especially in the short term. That's why huge hits like Terminator 2 and Silence of the Lambs actually ca []
    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by cgenman ( 325138 )
      To be fair, according to TFA, it is Peter Jackson who has committed himself to not enter a relationship about The Hobbit until the lawsuit is resolved. As resolving the lawsuit to PJ's satisfaction would probably require changing the voodoo accounting practices so prevalent in the industry, effecting their bottom line forever, New Line is right to take it seriously. In an industry where Forest Gump grossed about 700 million dollars yet "didn't make any money", any challenge to crooked accounting practices
    • My prediction (Score:3, Interesting)

      by geobeck ( 924637 )

      LOTR will remain popular as a rental with future generations, will remain at the head of Peter Jackson's CV, and will be the movie that inspires many big-screen TV purchses for years to come.

      The Hobbit and The Sillymarilly--Silamarilia--The Three Rocks will go straight to DVD, will not make a name for the director, possibly the same one responsible for such cinematic triumphs as "Rob Schneider Doo-pa Doo-pa Doo", and will be responsible for many Blockbuster membership cancellations because "they just don'

  • Blame Jackson? (Score:2, Interesting)

    For all the negative comments towards Jackson's work on the trilogy, the fact that they somehow have the idea that a prequel and "the Hobbit" are two seperate things bodes very ill for the "It absolutely must be exactly like the book" nerds.

    On the plus side, maybe some of us will appreciate Jackson more when we see how Hollywood botches these films. That or I'll eat my words.
  • by Phoenix666 ( 184391 ) on Monday November 20, 2006 @10:51AM (#16914374)
    Peter Jackson has amply demonstrated that his skills match up to Tolkien's complexity. There were others who tried LOTR and the Hobbit before, and made a mess of it. So if Peter Jackson is not involved with the Hobbit or a LOTR prequel, then Newline should save its money because I'm just not interested.
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by east coast ( 590680 )
      Peter Jackson has amply demonstrated that his skills match up to Tolkien's complexity.

      Really? My impression from most Tolkien fans is that they felt that PJ did an OK job given the limitations of what he had to work with (screen time mostly) but I have yet to find a single Tolkien fan who said he did an excellent job at capturing Tolkien's over all vision. I find a few Tolkien fans who are downright pissed with how badly ROTK came off compared to Tolkien's original work. (I'm one of them to be honest with
      • by 10Ghz ( 453478 ) on Monday November 20, 2006 @11:23AM (#16914892)
        "I have yet to find a single Tolkien fan who said he did an excellent job at capturing Tolkien's over all vision."

        I'm a Tolkien fan. I was even a card-carrying member of the Tolkien Club of Finland back in the day. I have read LOTR maybe 15 times (lost count to be honest), Hobbit maybe 6-7 times, Silmarillion 3-4 times and miscellaneous other book few times. And I think that PJ did very good job capturing the overall feel of the book, especially when we take in to account the differences in the medium.

        And I'm GLAD that he dropped Bombadil from the movie. While it works in the book, it would SUCK in the movie. Half the audience would walk out thinking "whats with the hopping and dancing dude?". Back when I first heard of the upcoming movie, my first thought was "whoa, this is great!". My second though was "um, how are they going to handle Bombadil?".

        "I find a few Tolkien fans who are downright pissed with how badly ROTK came off compared to Tolkien's original work. (I'm one of them to be honest with you)"

        maybe they should do their own movie then. They could waste all their time on pointless things, and the end-result would absolutely suck. PJ set out to create a good MOVIE. What many of those hardcore Tolkien fans (hell, I consider myself to be a hardcore fan, yet I can acknowledge the challenges PJ faced when making the movie) want is something that might be more faithful to the book, but would suck as a movie.
        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          "I have yet to find a single Tolkien fan who said he did an excellent job at capturing Tolkien's over all vision."

          I'm a LONGTIME Tolkein fan - to the point where I ordered the First Edition out of England when I read WH Auden's original review in the NY Times some 50+ years ago. And later the 2nd edition of the Hobbit. These copies are still in my personal library.

          I don't have any problem with the material that was left out. The pieces that were omitted were not central to the books. And I feel that the app
  • by Timesprout ( 579035 ) on Monday November 20, 2006 @10:52AM (#16914392)
    Gandalf the brown (named because of his cloak) will guide young Baggins in the way of the Foot in his quest against the evil dragon master. Along the way Bilbo becomes an expert at fighting with light staffs. Gollum is going to become very ashmatic and have a penchant for black outfits with funny helmets. The 13 dwarves, or dwarf army as they will be referred to dont really feature.
    • by Speare ( 84249 )

      How can you have a George Lucas movie that doesn't heavily feature a clan of excitable little people? Maybe American Graffiti, but I think that was just due to a misunderstanding about how long it had been since that Opie Taylor kid had actually appeared on film.

  • The Silmarillion? (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Upaut ( 670171 ) on Monday November 20, 2006 @10:57AM (#16914474) Homepage Journal
    Man I hope they don't try to tackle that one... Its not a novel, but a book of history. To cover it properly one needs a three week mini-series run on the history channel. (Please? With sugar on top? I put up with a week of fictional bible history, give me my Tolkein...)
  • by krell ( 896769 ) on Monday November 20, 2006 @10:59AM (#16914522) Journal
    Now nothing stands in the way of the ideal Hollywood version, with Paris Hilton as Galadriel, Ben Affleck as Gandalf, Jack Black as Sam Gamgee, and Keanu Reeve as Frodo ("The ring... Whoa!")
  • How about no? (Score:3, Interesting)

    by CharAznable ( 702598 ) on Monday November 20, 2006 @11:13AM (#16914726)
    How about not making the Hobbit at all? I loved the Lord Of The Rings movies, but for all the good in them, they ruined the books forever for me. When I read them now, I can't help but imagine Frodo being Elijah Wood and Gandalf being Ian McKellen. Every picture that had been formed in my mind by reading the books has been wiped over and replaced with Peter Jackson's vision, and that sucks.
    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      How about not making the Hobbit at all?

      Ha ha, dream on. You're going to get Hobbit Returns, The Hobbit's Revenge, and Hobbit Resurrection.

      Sam is also going to get his own spinoff movie, Samwise (the Legend of Sam Gamgee). They'll also make Gandalf in Love.

      And then, and then, just to piss everyone off and make some more money, they're going to hire a bunch of unemployed crap writers to produce a novelization of each of these movies, regardless of whether each film is already based on a Tolkien work or not. J
  • by UnknowingFool ( 672806 ) on Monday November 20, 2006 @11:14AM (#16914750)

    I'm shocked! Shocked I tell you. I mean who ever heard of a movie studio cheating someone out of their money? Really, it goes to show you, it doesn't matter who you are, the movie studio will try anything to keep their money.

    Like the RIAA's accounting, movie studio accounting is even more devious. Whenever someone tries to get paid a "part of the profits" for which they deserve, the studios always pull the "but according to our estimates, we didn't make money on that film." That's why there will never be a Forrest Gump sequel. The author, Winston Groom, was supposed to get a part of the profits. But according to Paramount, Forrest Gump didn't make any profits despite its $600+ million in sales. So he refuses to let the sequel become a movie.

    Another example is the dispute between Art Buchwald and Paramount. [] Buchwald pitched a script to Paramount about a movie in which Eddie Murphy playing an African king comes to America to look for a bride. After some development with director John Landis, it was abandoned. Paramount later produced a movie called Coming to America about an African prince played by Eddie Murphy that comes to America to find a bride. John Landis directed the movie. But according to Paramount, they were different movies completely. When Buchwald won his lawsuit, Paramount then argued the movie that though it had $350 million in sales, it made no profit according to their accounting. The court found their accounting "unconscionable". Rather than have the court delve into their accounting practices in detail, Paramount settled.

    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      Oddly enough, this isn't the first time someone involved of making a film of Lord of the Rings has been scrood over it. It isn't even the first time it happened to someone named Peter. If information posted at Conlan Press [] can be believed, Saul Zaentz made a number of promises to Peter S. Beagle in return for his writing the script for the animated LotR, and then reneged on them.

      Guess that's how it goes in Hollywood.
  • Looks like he'll have loads of time to continue working on the Halo movie instead!
  • by tezza ( 539307 ) on Monday November 20, 2006 @11:37AM (#16915114)
    Lord of the Rings was great. But Return of the King was a little too long. If they'd cut out some of the ending, they could have put more content in elsewhere [Tom Bomadil at the start, Sacking of Hobbiton by Saruman at end].

    And King Kong was unwatchably, laughably bad.

    Is a Director judged on their latter movies? Because if they are, I wouldn't want Jackson to do The Hobbit.
  • As far as who directs it, how they butcher the story, etc. etc... I can honestly say that I don't care all that much. All I really care about is that they make Smaug look really, incredibly cool, and have him kick major ass. In fact, if they just have 60 minutes of Smaug flying around and burning stuff, I'd go and see that.

    What? I like dragons

    In all honesty, though, I'd rather the movie not be made at all then to see it made poorly. But, sadly, the quality of the storytelling doesn't enter into it when the

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