Click to Skip Ad
Closing in...
Michael Moore Says Clint Eastwood Threatened To "Kill" Him 10 Years Ago, Calls 'American Sniper' A "Mess" Michael Moore Says Clint Eastwood Threatened To "Kill" Him 10 Years Ago, Calls 'American Sniper' A "Mess" Woody Allen’s Next Movie With Joaquin Phoenix & Emma Stone Titled ‘Irrational Man,’  Sony Pictures Classics Nab Rights Woody Allen’s Next Movie With Joaquin Phoenix & Emma Stone Titled ‘Irrational Man,’ Sony Pictures Classics Nab Rights Paul Thomas Anderson Says 'Edge Of Tomorrow' Is "F*cking Great," Also Loves 'Grand Budapest Hotel'  Paul Thomas Anderson Says 'Edge Of Tomorrow' Is "F*cking Great," Also Loves 'Grand Budapest Hotel' 10 Unaired TV Pilots By A-List Directors That We Want To See 10 Unaired TV Pilots By A-List Directors That We Want To See The 10 Best Films Of 2007 The 10 Best Films Of 2007 'Kick-Ass' Creator Mark Millar Says A Hit-Girl Solo Movie Was Once In The Works With 'The Raid' Director Gareth Evans 'Kick-Ass' Creator Mark Millar Says A Hit-Girl Solo Movie Was Once In The Works With 'The Raid' Director Gareth Evans Kristen Wiig, Melissa McCarthy, Kate McKinnon & Leslie Jones To Lead Paul Feig's 'Ghostbusters' Reboot Kristen Wiig, Melissa McCarthy, Kate McKinnon & Leslie Jones To Lead Paul Feig's 'Ghostbusters' Reboot 30 Films You Forgot Were Oscar Winners 30 Films You Forgot Were Oscar Winners Watch: Tom Hardy & Gary Oldman Face Off In The First Trailer For Thriller ‘Child 44’ Watch: Tom Hardy & Gary Oldman Face Off In The First Trailer For Thriller ‘Child 44’ Review: Documentary 'Night Will Fall' Is A Powerful Reminder Of The Horrors Of The Holocaust Review: Documentary 'Night Will Fall' Is A Powerful Reminder Of The Horrors Of The Holocaust Harvey Weinstein Explains What Happened With 'Grace Of Monaco,' Says He Was Right About 'Snowpiercer' Harvey Weinstein Explains What Happened With 'Grace Of Monaco,' Says He Was Right About 'Snowpiercer' Harvey Weinstein Says Quentin Tarantino Has Changed The Last Chapter Of 'The Hateful Eight' Harvey Weinstein Says Quentin Tarantino Has Changed The Last Chapter Of 'The Hateful Eight' Sundance Review: ‘Slow West’ Starring Michael Fassbender, Kodi Smit-McPhee & Ben Mendelsohn Sundance Review: ‘Slow West’ Starring Michael Fassbender, Kodi Smit-McPhee & Ben Mendelsohn Watch: 8-Minute Video Essay Argues Steve McQueen's 'Shame' Is Actually A Critique Of The Modern Metropolis Watch: 8-Minute Video Essay Argues Steve McQueen's 'Shame' Is Actually A Critique Of The Modern Metropolis Watch: The Tampon Scene From 'Fifty Shades Of Grey' You Won't See In The Movie Recreated With 'The Sims' Watch: The Tampon Scene From 'Fifty Shades Of Grey' You Won't See In The Movie Recreated With 'The Sims' "Carry Bolt Cutters Everywhere": Werner Herzog Has 24 Amazing Pieces Of Advice "Carry Bolt Cutters Everywhere": Werner Herzog Has 24 Amazing Pieces Of Advice The 25 Best Horror Films Of The 21st Century So Far The 25 Best Horror Films Of The 21st Century So Far The 20 Best TV Shows Of The 2013/2014 Season The 20 Best TV Shows Of The 2013/2014 Season From Worst To Best: Ranking The Films Of Hayao Miyazaki From Worst To Best: Ranking The Films Of Hayao Miyazaki Christopher Nolan Says His Howard Hughes Film Is Dead, But He'd Still Like To Do A Bond Film At Some Point Christopher Nolan Says His Howard Hughes Film Is Dead, But He'd Still Like To Do A Bond Film At Some Point

First Look At The Entire Cast Of 'The Hobbit'; Ian McKellen Plans On A Play During Filming Downtime

Photo of Kevin Jagernauth By Kevin Jagernauth | The Playlist February 11, 2011 at 6:25AM

Take a good look. These are the faces (and names) that are going to dominate the movie blogosphere for the next couple of years. With Peter Jackson's "The Hobbit" now set to lens next month after the director had a minor medical setback, the cast assembled for a press conference this week in New Zealand and a few photos were snapped of the entire crew. Aren't they a pleasant looking bunch? Obviously these are key players so if you're wondering where Elijah Wood and Cate Blanchett are, just remember, their appearances in the film are likely not going to be very large.
3


Take a good look. These are the faces (and names) that are going to dominate the movie blogosphere for the next couple of years. With Peter Jackson's "The Hobbit" now set to lens next month after the director had a minor medical setback, the cast assembled for a press conference this week in New Zealand and a few photos were snapped of the entire crew. Aren't they a pleasant looking bunch? Obviously these are key players so if you're wondering where Elijah Wood and Cate Blanchett are, just remember, their appearances in the film are likely not going to be very large.

With the epic set to span two films, it's no surprise that production is going to stretch out over 18 months. That's a big commitment for any actor, particularly those in the lead roles, as it makes it difficult to join other projects as their windows of availability are suddenly shrunken. For Ian McKellen it was that reason that initially made it a question mark for him about returning to the franchise.

"Sequels aren’t necessarily as rewarding to act in as their originals," McKellen wrote on his blog last month, adding, "The deciding negotiation was not about money but about dates. Gandalf is needed on set over the next 18 months but with sizeable breaks when I can work on other projects. My worry that I could not easily escape from Middle Earth was lifted."

As well known by now, McKellen's fears have been allayed and he's joined the project, but nothing without lining up some other projects to keep him from getting mired in Gandalf too long. Baz Bamigboye reports that McKellen will take to the stage during some of his downtime to play a Neapolitan crime boss called Don Antonio Barracano, in "The Syndicate." The three-act play is a comedy and will find Barracano trying to resolve various disputes in the town over which presides, and also preventing a bloodbath by a "magnanimous gesture."

The project will surely be a nice way for McKellen to break up the monotony of sticking with one character for a year-and-a-half, and a smart move on his part to make sure he would be able to maximize this 'Hobbit' downtime.

"The Hobbit" starts shooting on March 21st and part one will hit in December 2012.

This article is related to: Films, Actors, Genre Films, Ian McKellen, The Hobbit


The Playlist

The obsessives' guide to contemporary cinema via film discussion, news, reviews, features, nostalgia, movie music, soundtracks, DVDs and more.


E-Mail Updates