For those who were worried that Bilbo’s adventure through Middle Earth with a band of dwarves and an eccentric wizard, often said to be one of (if not the) foundation upon which all fantasy is built, wasn’t going to happen; fear not. Turns out District 9 might not be the only thing Peter Jackson and Neill Blomkamp have in common.

The film’s been in a state of administrative and creative flux for a long time now, and a lot of Rings fans were beginning to get worried (me included, in all honesty) that the film was never going to see the light of day. If you’re a Star Wars fan, and one of the more passionately anti-Rings ones, turn away now. They gone? All right, here’s the skinny for all those who want to see a small, large-footed fellow take on a crazy cave-dweller, a dragon, and the hungry stomachs of a band of dwarves in need of a good meal: the film looks like its definitely going ahead, and Neill Blomkamp (the visionary director who worked with Jackson on District 9) is rumoured to take the reins, though DigitalSpy is now claiming this isn’t the case. What a shame, if that’s true – he’d do a fantastic job.

This all comes in a storm of uncertain press about the film, and it’s yet to be established if anyone will be reprising their roles. However, anyone who’s watched the documentaries on the extended edition DVD set for the Rings trilogy knows that the cast are all so in love with the franchise they’ll come back anyway. That, and we all know no one’s going to top McKellen’s Gandalf the Grey. However, as Frodo and pals aren’t born yet, will we see a new, younger Bilbo? It seems logical, even if the older one only finished his documentation of the events in The Fellowship of the Ring. Other cast members are yet to be decided, though it’s fairly certain that a number of dwarves will need to go through the same painful process that put John Rhys-Davies off taking up the mantle in the prequel to the trilogy.

Eventually, it’s going to go into production – the “pre” stage has lasted longer than the events of the Rings trilogy in real time, and I’d imagine most Middle Earth fans are hungry to finally see the incredible journey of the most hardy, ingenious and important race in that particular universe. It makes you wonder what Tolkien would say, if he could’ve sat and watched the extended box-set. Probably a load of profanity, but there you go – most authors are never happy, even though a Hobbit film within the next two years would make the day of many a person wanting to shout “Men of Gondor!” while they’re lined up on the train platform.

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