Thorin Actor Richard Armitage Talks ‘The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies’

Published 1 year ago by

hobbit desolation smaug bilbo thorin Thorin Actor Richard Armitage Talks The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies

Director Peter Jackson’s epic prequel trilogy to his previous epic trilogy The Lord of the Rings culminates this December with the recently re-named The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies. It’s been a long journey for The Hobbit – before Jackson signed on to direct, Guillermo del Toro (Pacific Rim) was originally going to make the project in two parts.

Jackson took J.R.R. Tolkien’s single volume and expanded the story and scope well beyond the main narrative, which followed the simple hobbit Bilbo Baggins (Martin Freeman) as he was drafted by wizard Gandalf the Grey (Ian McKellan) into assisting dwarf king Thorin Oakenshield (Richard Armitage) and his brethren in re-taking the Lonely Mountain from the fearsome dragon Smaug (voiced by Benedict Cumberbatch).

The previous chapters in The Hobbit saga, An Unexpected Journey and The Desolation of Smaug, surpassed Peter Jackson’s LOTR trilogy in epic spectacle, and now star Richard Armitage has hinted that the final film will include some suitably memorable moments.

As Armitage told HitFix (via CBM):

“It’s going to be quite a nostalgic event I think. It’s going to be 15 years of seeing Middle Earth on the big screen, the culmination of Peter Jackson’s life’s work. I think the ‘Battle of the Five Armies’ is something that I cannot wait to see.”

Armitage echoed this sentiment to OTRC, adding: “There’s a couple of big surprises. […] I think it will be probably quite a cinematic event.” 

The Hobbit Desolation of Smaug poster Thorin Actor Richard Armitage Talks The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies

In the original novel, the men of the Long Lake, the elves of Mirkwood and the dwarves of the Lonely Mountain and the eagles of the Misty Mountain clash with the armies of goblins and wargs out of Moria. Bilbo, Gandalf and the shape-shifting Beorn (Mikael Persbrandt) all play important roles in the outcome of the battle.

Jackson’s films don’t break with the source material so much as stretch that narrative out into a kind of all-encompassing direct lead-in to the story of Sauron’s rebirth in Lord of the RingsThe Hobbit adds the relationship between elf Tauriel (Evangeline Lilly) and the dwarf Kili (Aiden Turner) and includes LOTR characters Legolas (Orlando Bloom) and Saruman (Christopher Lee) – neither of whom appear in the book – and expands the story of Bard the Bowman (Luke Evans).

The Battle of the Five Armies also needs to wrap up the conflict between Smaug and Laketown, as well as see Thorin finally retake the Lonely Mountain.

What kind of surprises could possibly in store? There’s only so much more Jackson can add at this point without breaking the continuity from The Hobbit films into LOTR, but the combination of many small changes and some unexpected big ones will keep fans guessing until the end of the year.


The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies will be released in U.S. theaters on December 17th, 2014.

Source: CBM & OTRC

Follow Anthony Vieira on Twitter @malaclyptic
TAGS: The hobbit
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  1. I really think that this final film of The Hobbit Trilogy will be on par with The Lord o the Rings Trilogy. The previous two haven’t been close, as many people agree with but this one will be a return to form in terms of story telling. The first two installments if they would have been combined could have been I think.

  2. Little bit of a Spoiler for those who haven’t read the book…

    I wonder if Kili’s death will be shifted from dying while defending Thorin to dying to protect the elf Tauriel….I actually really do like that addition. It gives you much more emotional investment in Kili since in the book Thorin was the only dwarf that even really had much investment put into his character IIRC.

    • I completely agree. I think many of the additions to this trilogy have the potential to give this final installment emotional and powerful sequences. I am very eager to hear some of the score that will be provided as I think that Return of the King has many of the most powerful songs composed by Howard Shore. Not that the trilogies are totally comparable but… finales are nice. Look forward to the “nostalgic” feel too.

    • For some reason, Balin was always my favorite in the book (even before seeing his movie portrayal), and that is even more true with the actor they got to play him in the movie.

      That said, I heard a rumor that there will be a MAJOR departure from the book just recently. I hope it is wrong, because if Thorin doesn’t face the consequence for his greed, that will destroy a major theme of the book.

  3. Personally i really think the The Hobbit films thus far are on par with the first 2 Lotr films.

    I think people these days expect too much.
    If it was the Lotr films released these years and the The Hobbit films back in 2001-2003 people would say the exact same things about Lotr as they do now about The Hobbit.

    • I’m not sure I agree, but everyone has their preferences. I personally really do enjoy the Hobbit films but I am a nostalgic person so I look back on the LOTR trilogy and just think about how they were amazing to me. I was so young when they were released and they made up a solid part of my childhood. So part of my biggest gripe with the Hobbit films is their use of CGI and less make-up and masks like the original trilogy used. So on some level I agree with you, but I think many of the Hobbit’s criticisms today would also be relevant in 2001-2003. It would be very interesting to think about the changes though, if the films’ time was swapped.

    • Finally! A rational LotR fanatic! I find the savagery brought forth towards the Hobbit series baffling since they are an equivalent force when compared to that of the LotR trilogy. Of course, the film does not follow the source material as well as the primary trilogy has, but there will be no point in making a film about the Hobbit series if it has to precisely follow the elements of the Hobbit novel thus adding little to no originality to the movie(s).

  4. The hobbit is well justified as a trilogy, the book was written for children and the plot just doesn’t hold up without jackson’s addition of the arkenstone’s significance. The book may have been short, but it was also very, very dense. A lot more happened in it than in all of the Lord of the rings books, it was just all very quick and close together without much justification. We’re being given a story which enriches and expands the source material using information from tolkien’s own notes, and I like that, people might say the book is the smallest but the story certainly isn’t. The subplot of the necromancer is something new we can experience, I like that.

  5. I personally cannot stand The Lord of the Rings Prequel Trilogy. I cannot call it The Hobbit Trilogy because I do not believe it has earned that title. The Lord of the Rings films deviated from the source material sometimes, however they still followed it and honored it. I think that’s why everybody loves The Lord of the Rings movies so much, Jackson managed to make one of the best (in my opinion of course) book series to life on the silver screen. The way Tolkein had written LOTR, with so much detail and just all around greatness, it seemed impossible to make something that great into a movie. Especially considering that most book to film adaptations aren’t very good. However, Jackson did it. Now he has brought us The Hobbit, with all its unnecessary subplots, forced love triangles, and its over use of CGI. The Hobbit could have been a very solid film if it was just one movie, maybe it could have been two movies. But then it would have to be two 2 1/2 hour films instead of two 3 hour films. He has stretched The Hobbit so thin that it belongs in the same category as the Star Wars Prequel Trilogy. However, like I said before, this is all just my opinion,

  6. I have to say, I really liked the first Hobbit movie, and I didn’t mind the love triangle. But the complete departure and ultimate middle finger to fans of the book was the entire chase through the lonely mountain, culminating in the ridiculous molten dwarf king statue. I get angry everytime I think about that, and it’s the reason I only saw the movie once. If the third doesn’t do some crazy junk like that, than I’ll be able to enjoy it.

    • *love triangle in the second movie
      *then, not than

      Maybe I’ll proof read a little better next time.

    • I imagine loads of people would have said it was boring if it weren’t added…if they had just had Smaug leave after his conversation with Bilbo to end the movie there wouldn’t have been any action in the third portion of the film. They had the spider fight in the first third, the river scene in the middle portion, and Smaug in the final third. Seems to flow pretty well to me.

  7. Love the first 2 films and I am sure that the final Hobbit film will be just as enjoyable as the previous 5 Peter Jackson Middle Earth film. I’m actually kind of sad that this will be Jackson’s last foray into Tolkien’s universe.

  8. Never mind The Hobbit…I want to see the Strike Back early episodes featuring Richard Armitage. C’mon Netflix, get that into your collection!

  9. I agree with others here, the first two hobbit movies should have been combined into 1. This is a criticism, but the only one I have. A great legacy P. Jackson leaves on our world for a few ticks of time.

  10. It’s kind of weird to think about, but think about it…

    In about 10 years, people will be watching The Hobbit before The Lord of the Rings, so technically the next generations’ “finale” will be the ring being destroyed, and Aragorn becoming King.

  11. i hope this isnt the last time we get to see middle earth,after this franchise they could jump to after the LOTR into the 4th age that revolves around Aragons son Eldarion, whos mother is Arwen daughter of Elrond. theres still alot of story here to tell and they could do the franchise like there doing Star Wars. i dont see Peter Jackson being behind the camera to take on another franchise but he coild easily produce.

    • Eh, nah. If they can’t get the rights to make films about the first and second ages they just need to end it after this last film.

  12. I just hope they don’t stray too far from the source material for the finale. Not giving anything away, but the characters who die in the book should die in the movie. They certainly didn’t change Boromir’s death scene.

    • I’m pretty sure they’ll die, but maybe change up the manner in which they die a little.

  13. “Jackson’s films don’t break with the source material so much as stretch that narrative out […]” – whoever wrote that article obviously did not read the book. Wow. Do me a favour: next time you write an article like that, make sure you at least know a little bit of what you’re talking about. Thank you.

    • I’ve read the book and the only thing he made up out of thin air was Tauriel. Everything else was mentioned in some of the other stuff Tolkien wrote, but just wasn’t really explained in “The Hobbit”…partially because when he wrote the Hobbit he had no intention of continuing the story.

  14. If you think that the Hobbit has surpassed the Lord of the Rings in any way, you are truly delusional. The first two movies were good, but no where near the masterpiece that is the LotR trilogy. Claiming so is an insult to the trilogy.

  15. Jackson adulterated LOTR more and more with each movie. His treatment of the The Hobbit borders on heresy. I man be in the minority, but he has completely butchered the creating characters and scenes which did not exist in in Tolkien’s world while diminishing characters that did. 90%+ of the second movies had little or nothing to do with the Tolkien’s works. A better name for the entire film series is The Hobbit – Peter Jackson’s Desolation of Middle Earth.