When comparing the 13 dwarves of "The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey," one big, bushy issue is bound to come up: Which of the pint-sized warriors has the best beard.

The special effects team in New Zealand that worked tirelessly on the Peter Jackson's second epic Middle-earth trilogy created unique facial hair for each of the dwarves, based on the actors' own personal styles.

When MTV News caught up with the entire cast of "The Hobbit" at the New York City premiere of the first film, we put that difficult question to each of the actors to finally get the definitive answer. Not so surprisingly, three front-runners emerged rather quickly.

The first dwarf on the leaderboard was Stephen Hunter's Bombur, the most rotund of the band. "I think there are some pretty extraordinary ones, but Bombur with the red hair and the huge [braid]," said co-producer and co-writer Philippa Boyens. "We think he's the sexiest dwarf definitely."

Bombur also score the all-important Elijah Wood vote. "Bombur's is probably the best, the one that comes down and is braided," he said. "It's amazing."

An early lead for Bombur, however, could withstand the sheer force of Gloin's ginger beard, as worn by Peter Hambleton. "Definitely me," Hambleton said. "Definitely the red beard. Stephen Hunter and I called ourselves 'Team Ginger,' and we're very proud of our red beards. I think I would like to compete for the prize of the best beard." Gloin went on to collect the most votes among his fellow dwarves.

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But before the race turned into a one-sided victory for the mighty red beard of Gloin, Gandalf, the OB (original beard), stepped in to present a challenge. "I'm not a big fan of beards, but I suppose Gandalf has got the best beard," said Ian McKellen, who plays the legendary wizard. "It's the longest, I think, and he's not as vain as those dwarves. They're so vain, forever primping with their combs and brushes."

Check out everything we've got on "The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey," which opens on December 14.