In a message posted on his Facebook account, Jackson confirmed the rumors that a third "Hobbit" movie is indeed in the offing, with Variety's Josh Dickey asserting that the film will hit theaters in summer 2014 a departure from the planned December 2013 and 2014 releases for the first two "Hobbit" adventures. A more specific release date is not currently known.
"It is only at the end of a shoot that you finally get the chance to sit down and have a look at the film you have made," Jackson wrote of the decision to expand the "Hobbit" adaptation as a trilogy. "We were really pleased with the way the story was coming together, in particular, the strength of the characters and the cast who have brought them to life. All of which gave rise to a simple question: do we take this chance to tell more of the tale? And the answer from our perspective as the filmmakers, and as fans, was an unreserved 'yes.' "
"We know how much of the story of Bilbo Baggins, the Wizard Gandalf, the Dwarves of Erebor, the rise of the Necromancer, and the Battle of Dol Guldur will remain untold if we do not take this chance," he continued. "The richness of the story of The Hobbit, as well as some of the related material in the appendices of The Lord of the Rings, allows us to tell the full story of the adventures of Bilbo Baggins and the part he played in the sometimes dangerous, but at all times exciting, history of Middle-earth."
The first portion of the "Hobbit" trilogy, titled "An Unexpected Journey," hits theaters on December 14, 2012.
What do you think of Jackson's decision to turn "The Hobbit" into a trilogy? Sound off in the comments section below!