Ian McKellen Says THE HOBBIT Starts Filming in June – Weta Planning on 3D HOBBIT

     March 17, 2010

Ian McKellen as Gandalf in Lord of the Rings movie - slice.jpg

According to Ian McKellen, Guillermo del Toro’s The Hobbit is on track to start filming this June.  The plan is to film both Hobbit movies at the same time with cameras rolling for a year.  Here’s what McKellen posted on his website:

THE HOBBIT’s, two films, start shooting in New Zealand in June.  Filming will take over a year. Casting in Los Angeles, New York City and London has started.  The script too proceeds.  The first draft is crammed with old and new friends, again on a quest in Middle Earth.  The director Guillermo del Toro is now living in Wellington, close to the Jacksons’ and the studio in Miramar.

But what is unclear is will The Hobbit be shot and/or released in 3D.  I think with the way things are going, it’s pretty clear 3D is happening…and according to Weta, they’re planning for 3D.  Hit the jump for more:

fellowship_ring_movie_image_ian_mckellen_gandalf_01.jpgOver on The One Ring, they have a source that says the movies will be filming in 3D and Weta Digital – which won an Oscar for its work on Avatar – would be working on the project.

While some sites post questionable scoops, I would never bet against The One Ring and Hobbit news.

Also, I’d like to think Peter Jackson and Guillermo del Toro know the benefits of filming in 3D and not doing it in post, as look at the difference between Avatar and the Tron Legacy trailer versus Alice in Wonderland.  It’s night and day.  While 3D in post production is getting better and better (I’m hearing Clash of the Titans looks great), I still think filming in 3D makes a HUGE difference.

But before we go jumping up and down with excitement over two new Lord of the Rings movies:

Yesterday, a spokesman for Jackson’s Wingnut Films, Matt Dravitzki, said nothing had been set in stone. “What Guillermo said on the blog is as far as things got. It’s a conversation being had by a lot of studios but that’s as much as it is at this stage. We don’t have a cast, we don’t have a green light, and until any of those things happen no decision around [3D] will be announced or made.”

With the amount of money Lord of the Rings made at the worldwide box office, The Hobbit is getting made.  It’s just a question of when.


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