Click to Skip Ad
Closing in...
Watch: Jesse Eisenberg And Kristen Stewart Go On In The Run In Red Band Trailer For 'American Ultra' Watch: Jesse Eisenberg And Kristen Stewart Go On In The Run In Red Band Trailer For 'American Ultra' Tilda Swinton Joins Benedict Cumberbatch In 'Doctor Strange' Tilda Swinton Joins Benedict Cumberbatch In 'Doctor Strange' Watch: Jason Segel Plays David Foster Wallace Opposite Jesse Eisenberg In The First Trailer For ‘The End Of The Tour’ Watch: Jason Segel Plays David Foster Wallace Opposite Jesse Eisenberg In The First Trailer For ‘The End Of The Tour’ The Top 10 Films Of The 2015 Cannes Film Festival The Top 10 Films Of The 2015 Cannes Film Festival 5 Innovative Ways The Michael Fassbender/Marion Cotillard 'Macbeth' Differs From Previous Versions 5 Innovative Ways The Michael Fassbender/Marion Cotillard 'Macbeth' Differs From Previous Versions New ‘Ant-Man’ Photos; Movie May Include More Marvel Cinematic Universe Characters New ‘Ant-Man’ Photos; Movie May Include More Marvel Cinematic Universe Characters Over 30 New 'Jurassic World' Photos, Plus 2 New Clips & Lots Of New TV Spots Over 30 New 'Jurassic World' Photos, Plus 2 New Clips & Lots Of New TV Spots Matt Damon Goes Interstellar Again In New Pics From Ridley Scott's 'The Martian' Matt Damon Goes Interstellar Again In New Pics From Ridley Scott's 'The Martian' Cannes Awards Winners: Jacques Audiard's 'Dheepan' Wins Palme d’Or; Rooney Mara Ties For Best Actress With ‘Carol’ Cannes Awards Winners: Jacques Audiard's 'Dheepan' Wins Palme d’Or; Rooney Mara Ties For Best Actress With ‘Carol’ First Look: Matt Damon As An Astronaut In Ridley Scott’s ‘The Martian’ First Look: Matt Damon As An Astronaut In Ridley Scott’s ‘The Martian’ Cannes Review: Justin Kurzel's 'Macbeth' Starring Michael Fassbender & Marion Cotillard Cannes Review: Justin Kurzel's 'Macbeth' Starring Michael Fassbender & Marion Cotillard Watch: Incredible Vintage Footage Of Audience Reactions To 'The Exorcist' In 1973 Watch: Incredible Vintage Footage Of Audience Reactions To 'The Exorcist' In 1973 Lonely Island Movie Is Called 'Conner4real,’ Targets Justin Bieber & Katy Perry, Adds Sarah Silverman, Imogen Poots, & More Lonely Island Movie Is Called 'Conner4real,’ Targets Justin Bieber & Katy Perry, Adds Sarah Silverman, Imogen Poots, & More Here's The Character Backstory For Doof aka Guitar Flamethrower Dude In 'Mad Max: Fury Road' Here's The Character Backstory For Doof aka Guitar Flamethrower Dude In 'Mad Max: Fury Road' The 10 Most Controversial Cannes Films Ever The 10 Most Controversial Cannes Films Ever New NSFW, Extremely Graphic, Adults-Only Poster For Gaspar Noe's 'Love' New NSFW, Extremely Graphic, Adults-Only Poster For Gaspar Noe's 'Love' The 25 Best Films Of 2015 We've Already Seen The 25 Best Films Of 2015 We've Already Seen 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 All The Songs In 'Pitch Perfect' Including La Roux, David Guetta, Azealia Banks, Nicki Minaj & More All The Songs In 'Pitch Perfect' Including La Roux, David Guetta, Azealia Banks, Nicki Minaj & More

Peter Jackson Reveals Where ‘The Hobbit’ Would've Been Split If It Was 2 Movies As Originally Planned

The Playlist By Edward Davis | The Playlist December 13, 2013 at 4:46PM

Peter Jackson’s “The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug” hits theaters this weekend. It’s either the far better of the two ‘Hobbit’ films thus far, or barely better depending on your point of view (you can read our review here). Originally scheduled to be two films, near the end of production, Jackson and Warner Bros. decided to split the story into three films. Good idea? Bad idea? It’ll be hard to tell until the whole thing is over, but our review suggests, you’re already seeing those growing pains.
10
The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug

Peter Jackson’s “The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug” hits theaters this weekend. It’s either the far better of the two ‘Hobbit’ films thus far, or barely better depending on your point of view (you can read our review here). Originally scheduled to be two films, near the end of production, Jackson and Warner Bros. decided to split the story into three films. Good idea? Bad idea? It’ll be hard to tell until the whole thing is over, but our review suggests, you’re already seeing those growing pains.

“The strain of what was originally conceived as one story running the course of two movies, now stretched to its limits with a third picture, is deeply felt,” our reviewer wrote. “The character arcs are negligible... far too many of the film's story elements [are] just a set up which will pay off in another episode. The episodic, middle chapter [nature of movies] that is currently hurting the modern-day tentpole sequel is fully evinced.”

OK, so the stretched nature of the narrative seems to be a problem. Mercenary-like move? "People think it's a cold-blooded cash-grab from the studio, but it didn’t come from the studio at all, [the idea to expand to a third film] came from [co-screenwriters] Fran [Walsh] Philipa [Boyens] and I,” Jackson himself said in a recent interview with Entertainment Weekly.

So where would the split of the story originally occurred? And this will probably make more sense to you after you’ve seen the movie, but Jackson said, “The split was going to occur where Bard [The Bowman played by Luke Evans] appears on the river bank as a silhouetted figure with a bow. So the whole barrel sequence was going to be the climax.”

If they would have kept it that way, the first ‘Hobbit’ movie unedited as they are now, would have likely ran about 4 and ½ hours. Jackson says he realizes lots of audiences had problems with the “meandering road movie”-ness of the first 'Hobbit' film, but says the decision to expand the movies means “we rethought it all,” and that this was more satisfying. “There was certainly no shortage of material,” he added. 

Well, so far the first two movies run almost 6 hours and there’s no doubt “There And Back Again” due December 14, 2015 will run almost 3 hours once more. You’ll have to check back after you see the second film and see if you think it was worth it. ‘The Desolation of Smaug’ opens up in theaters nationwide today.

This article is related to: Peter Jackson, The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug, The Hobbit: The Battle Of The Five Armies


The Playlist

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


E-Mail Updates