About a month after it was announced that The Hobbit would officially be a trilogy, Warner Bros. has dated the trilogy-ender. We were already aware it would be a summer 2014 launch, but now we know the picture will hit theaters on July 18. Furthermore, it has been revealed that the third Hobbit movie will be subtitled There and Back Again while the second effort releasing seven months earlier will be called The Desolation of Smaug.
According to Warner Bros.’s Dan Fellman, the release date was due to the desire for a shorter gap between installments, but also to make a bigger pile of money:
“We wanted to have a shorter gap between the second and third films of The Hobbit Trilogy. Opening in July affords us not only the perfect summer tentpole, but fans will have less time to wait for the finale of this epic adventure. The Hobbit: There and Back Again opening in the summer will maximize playability for what promises to be an event film for fans the world over.”
The Hobbit’s stars include include Luke Evans, Elijah Wood, Martin Freeman, Cate Blanchett, Evangeline Lilly, Ian Holm, Orlando Bloom, Hugo Weaving, Ian McKellen, Andy Serkis, Christopher Lee, and Billy Connolly. An Unexpected Journey releases December 14, 2012 while The Desolation of Smaug will arrive in theaters a year later on December 13, 2013.
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