The third film in The Hobbit trilogy will be released in July 2014, the studio has confirmed, along with the new title for the second film.
The third movie in Peter Jackson's trilogy – which will be called The Hobbit: There and Back Again – will open on 18 July 2014, just seven months after the second film, now titled The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug, which arrives in theatres on 13 December 2013.
The first film in the trilogy – The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey – starring The Office star Martin Freeman as Bilbo Baggins, has been set for a 14 December 2012 opening.
Director Jackson announced in July that the 3D film adaptation of the classic novel by JRR Tolkien would be made into three films, instead of two as originally planned, and Warner Bros. executives said they believed the final movie would play well in the summer — the most lucrative period for the movie industry.
"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 tent-pole, but fans will have less time to wait for the finale of this epic adventure," Dan Fellman, president of domestic distribution at Warner Bros. said in a statement.
The Hobbit is the prequel to Tolkien's The Lord of the Rings, which Jackson turned into three Oscar-winning films.
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