If it's crap ... We'll tell you
Just a few days ago, Peter Jackson wrapped shooting on his two-part cinematic adaptation of J.R.R. Tolkien's 'The Hobbit.' His return to Middle-earth was of course a massive undertaking and we were all gearing up to see the first half of the story this Christmas. It seemed once again, an era had ended in dramatic fashion...or did it? During a recent interview, Jackson mentioned that he was in negotiations with the studio to allow him to shoot more footage next year. Apparently, this request is predicated upon the sheer amount of content in both the novel and Tolkien's various appendices. Could this mean we'll be getting a third 'Hobbit' film? Here's what he said...
"Well, it’s very, very premature. We have got incredible source material with the appendices. There’s the novel, but then we also have the rights to use the 125 pages of additional notes where Tolkien expanded the world of The Hobbit. We’ve used some of that so far, and just in the last few weeks, as we’ve been wrapping up the shooting and thinking about the shape of the story, Philippa [Boyens], Fran [Walsh] and I have been talking to the studio about other things that we haven’t been able to shoot and seeing if we could possibly persuade them to do a few more weeks of shooting. We’d probably need more than a few weeks, actually, next year. The discussions are pretty early, so there isn’t anything to report, but there are other parts of the story that we’d like to tell, that we haven’t had the chance to tell yet. We’re just trying to have those conversations with the studio, at the moment."
I'm not sure what to make of this information. On the one hand, we must be very cautious in our assumption. Just because there is more story to tell than will fit into the two theatrically released movies does not necessarily promise a third. Anyone who has purchased any of the extended versions of 'The Lord of the Rings' trilogy knows that Jackson tends to pack these editions with miles of material that was not featured in theaters. However, it's unusual that he would ask the studio for permission to go back and shoot this material after the fact if it were just going to find purchase on the Blu-ray. It seems more likely that the additional footage would be added to part two, but I'm not ruling out the possibility of a third film entirely, especially if Jackson is probing material from the appendices as well. The fact that he never uses the words, "trilogy" or "another film" leaves me a bit uncertain.
What do you guys think? Is a 'Hobbit' trilogy possible? Do you see it happening?