As The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey kicks off the first of three prequel films next Friday, it's next year's The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug that should really get the ball rolling. Not only will we be introduced to Benedict Cumberbatch's titular dragon Smaug but the Battle of Five Armies will be set up for what's sure to be an impressive event on the big screen. Though what exactly Peter Jackson has planned is a bit up in the air now that he's expanded the story into a trilogy, it's the latest clip from An Unexpected Journey that has Gandalf setting up Smaug to be a very serious threat.
The first film follows the journey of title character Bilbo Baggins, who is swept into an epic quest to reclaim the lost Dwarf Kingdom of Erebor, which was long ago conquered by the dragon Smaug. Approached out of the blue by the wizard Gandalf the Grey, Bilbo finds himself joining a company of thirteen dwarves led by the legendary warrior, Thorin Oakensheild. Their journey will take them into the Wild; through treacherous lands swarming with Goblins and Orcs, deadly Wargs and Giant Spiders, Shapeshifters and Sorcerers. Although their goal lies to the East and the wastelands of the Lonely Mountain first they must escape the goblin tunnels, where Bilbo meets the creature that will change his life forever…Gollum.
Here, alone with Gollum, on the shores of an underground lake, the unassuming Bilbo Baggins not only discovers depths of guile and courage that surprise even him, he also gains possession of Gollum’s “precious” ring that holds unexpected and useful qualities…A simple, gold ring that is tied to the fate of all Middle-earth in ways Bilbo cannot begin to know.
The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, starring Martin Freeman, Andy Serkis, Ian McKellen, Christopher Lee, Elijah Wood, Orlando Bloom, Evangeline Lilly, Hugo Weaving, Benedict Cumberbatch, Mikael Persbrandt, Lee Pace, Stephen Fry, Cate Blanchett, and many more, and directed by Peter Jackson, will hit theaters on December 14th.