Peter Jackson has added two more to the cast of The Hobbit. Evangeline Lilly (Lost) and Australian actor Barry Humphries have joined the cast of the two-part adaptation, currently filming in New Zealand. Lilly will be playing a new character—The Woodland Elf, Tauriel. Beyond the name, Jackson is remiss to reveal any other information about the role. Humphries, a talented voice actor and comedian, will be playing the Goblin King using motion-capture, akin to Andy Serkis’ performance of Gollum.
Hit the jump to read Jackson’s fully statement on the casting news. The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey will be released on December 14th, 2012, with The Hobbit: There and Back Again hitting theaters on December 13th, 2013.
Here’s the full statement via Jackson’s Facebook page:
Yikes! I can finally get back to some postings! We’ve finished our first block of shooting and moved straight into location scouting. More on that soon… But today, I’m thrilled to announce two new cast members who will be joining us for our second block of shooting.
Evangeline Lilly will be playing a new character—the Woodland Elf, Tauriel. Her name means ‘daughter of Mirkwood’ and, beyond that, we must leave you guessing! (No, there is no romantic connection to Legolas.) What is not a secret is how talented and compelling an actress Evangeline is; we are thrilled and excited she will be the one to bring our first true Sylvan Elf to life.
I’m also highly excited that Barry Humphries will be portraying the Goblin King, in much the way Andy Serkis created Gollum. Barry is perhaps best known for his business and social connections as the long-time manager of Dame Edna Everage. He has also been an ardent supporter of the rather misunderstood and unfairly maligned Australian politician, Sir Les Patterson. However, in his spare time, Barry is also a fine actor, and we’re looking forward to seeing him invest the Goblin King with the delicate sensitivity and emotional depth this character deserves.
Evangeline and Barry, along with Welsh actor Luke Evans as Bard and Benedict Cumberbatch as Smaug, just about rounds out the major casting. I cannot wait to get stuck into these new scenes!
More soon, including a flurry of answers to your questions. Sorry for the delay!