Peter Jackson, director of the “Hobbit” movie franchise, announced on his Facebook page Thursday morning that the third and final “Hobbit” movie has a new name.
Originally titled “There and Back Again,” Jackson wrote that the new name will be “The Battle of the Five Armies.” Rumors of a name change have been circulating for the past week, sparked when fan site TheOneRing.net reported that New Line had registered the name “The Hobbit: Into the Fire.”
The franchise’s studio Warner Bros. confirmed the change.
In the “Hobbit” franchise, the now titular battle refers to epic showdown in which many previously introduced characters and creatures, including goblins, dwarves, elves and men, emerge to go up against each other.
While only two “Hobbit” films were originally planned, a third was added after Jackson borrowed characters from the “Lord of the Rings” franchise and added some original story. “An Unexpected Journey,” the first “Hobbit” movie, grossed a whopping $1 billion worldwide. While the sequel “Desolation of Smaug” made less, it still had a huge take with $953 million worldwide.
Jackson also revealed in the post that editing on the final movie is almost complete, and that there will be an extended cut of “Desolation of Smaug” with 25 minutes of new scenes. Read the full Facebook post below, in which Jackson explains the rationale for the new name:
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“The Hobbit: Battle of the Five Armies” will be released this year with MGM handling distribution.