Production on The Hobbit yesterday took its most decisive step forward in ages: Peter Jackson finalizing his deal to direct both parts (in 3D, natch), with filming slated for February. Of course, they’ll an actor or two to throw in front of the camera, so casting is starting to heat up. Martin Freeman (The Office) recently spoke about his status as the frontrunner to play Bilbo Baggins (schedule pending), stating “If something could be worked out, that would be great.” With the film going forward in a more official capacity, Deadline confirms that Freeman in the lead is a pretty good bet.
David Tennant (Doctor Who) was once rumored as a Bilbo candidate, but is now talking to the studio about a different role. Likewise, an offer is out to James Nesbit (Match Point) — Michael Fassbender (Inglourious Basterds) is also on the producers’ wishlist. Ian McKellan and Andy Serkis are expected to reprise their roles as Gandalf and Gollum, respectively. Hit the jump for a synopsis of the book.
A synopsis for J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Hobbit:
Bilbo Baggins, the hobbit, is a peaceful sort of cozy hole in the Shire, a place where adventures are uncommon and rather unwanted. So when the wizard Gandalf whisks him away on a treasure hunting expedition with a troop of rowdy dwarves, he’s not entirely thrilled. Encountering ruthless trolls, beastly orcs, gigantic spiders, and hungry wolves, Bilbo discovers within himself astonishing strength and courage. And at the ultimate confrontation with the fearsome dragon Smaug, the hobbit will brave the dangers of dark and dragon fire alone and unaided. [Amazon]
This is the one book related to the Lord of the Rings series I have actually read (thanks, high school curriculum!), but it was long enough ago that I couldn’t competently match these actors to the characters. How would you cast Nesbit, Fassbender, and Tennant?
We seem like we’re finally on the verge of The Hobbit movies becoming a reality, but it’s been a long and troubled saga getting here. Click here for all of our coverage on The Hobbit‘s development.