WELLINGTON, New Zealand, July 30 (UPI) -- The big-screen adaptation of "The Hobbit" will be told in three films shot in New Zealand, instead of two as initially planned, producers said Monday.
The announcement regarding the prequels to Jackson's three "Lord of the Rings" blockbusters was made by New Line, MGM, Warner Bros. and writer-director-producer Peter Jackson, The Hollywood Reporter said.
"Upon recently viewing a cut of the first film, and a chunk of the second, Fran Walsh, Philippa Boyens and I were very pleased with the way the story was coming together," Jackson said in a statement, acknowledging his fellow producers.
"We recognized that the richness of the story of 'The Hobbit,' as well as some of the related material in the appendices of 'The Lord of the Rings,' gave rise to a simple question: 'Do we tell more of the tale?' And the answer from our perspective as filmmakers and fans was an unreserved 'yes.' We know the strength of our cast and of the characters they have brought to life. We know creatively how compelling and engaging the story can be and -- lastly, and most importantly -- we know how much of the tale of Bilbo Baggins, the Dwarves of Erebor, the rise of the Necromancer, and the Battle of Dol Guldur would remain untold if we did not fully realize this complex and wonderful adventure. I'm delighted that New Line, MGM and Warner Bros. are equally enthusiastic about bringing fans this expansive tale across three films."
"The Hobbit" and "Lord of the Rings" trilogy are based on fantasy novels by J.R.R. Tolkien.