Ian McKellen Says The Journey Through Middle Earth Isn't Over

If Gandalf says it, it must be true.

If you've been simultaneously anticipating and dreading the release of "The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies" -- anticipating, because it's a glorious new Middle Earth movie, yet dreading, because after this there will be no more new glorious Middle Earth movies, and who wants to even go on existing in that cold, cruel, hobbit-less world? -- then Gandalf the Grey, a.k.a. Ian McKellen, might have just given you the reason to live you've been looking for.

Speaking with the BBC at the premiere of the third and final "Hobbit" film, McKellen said that he's not entirely convinced that Peter Jackson is done with the world of wizards, orcs, elves, and ents.

"I was told by Peter that in 2001, that was the end, that it was all over," he said. "And now here we are, thirteen years later. So I don't believe, necessarily, that this is the end of the journey."

Um. Did he just say what we think he just said? Could more Middle Earth adventures be in line for a big-screen adaptation?

Although McKellen might have tempered the excitement a bit with a followup comment, something to the effect that Jackson's legacy will continue as long as the existing six Middle Earth-set films are still being enjoyed, nevertheless, the wisest wizard ever just totally teased the possibility of us all someday returning to wander the paths of Mirkwood or dine with the elves at Rivendell.

Add to that the part where there are more works by J.R.R. Tolkien that haven't been adapted for the big screen yet, and this is justifiably thrilling for anyone not quite ready to depart Middle Earth for the undying lands just yet. Let's just hope that they get moving on new films while Ian McKellen is still around to play his favorite role.

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