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Martin Freeman Confirmed As Bilbo!
Richard Armitage & more cast as Dwarves

22 October 2010  |  Written by James White  |  Source: Deadline

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Peter Jackson and company might still be planning to shift the Shire after all the union problems with The Hobbit, but now we know who will be playing the lead. And it’s someone who has been rumoured, discounted due to scheduling, talked to us about it and then finally found space in his busy working life to head off to Middle-earth. Ladies and gentlemen, your new Bilbo Baggins is… Martin Freeman. You may start with the “told you so” at your leisure.

New Line and Warner Bros. made the big announcement early today, and it would appear that Freeman has had Jackson’s seal of approval almost from the start. "Despite the various rumours and speculation surround this role, there has only ever been one Bilbo Baggins for us," the director says as part of the official statement. "There are a few times in your career when you come across an actor who you know was born to play a role, but that was the case as soon as I met Martin. He is intelligent, funny, surprising and brave – exactly like Bilbo and I feel incredibly proud to be able to announce that he is our Hobbit."

But that’s not all… There are other characters in the story after all, and the statement was loaded down with other casting news. Spooks/Robin Hood’s Richard Armitage appears to be on a hot streak, as he’s in Captain America and will also play Thorin Oakenshield, leader of the Company of Dwarves who are on a quest to wrest the Lonely Mountain from Smaug. "Richard is one of the most exciting and dynamic actors working on screen today and we know he is going to make an amazing Thorin Oakenshield. We cannot wait to start this adventure with him and feel very lucky that one of the most beloved characters in Middle-earth is in such good hands,” says Jackson of the decision.

And then there’s Being Human’s Aidan Turner, who is Kili and EastEnders’ Rob Kazinsky, who has signed on as Fili. “Rob is an extremely talented young actor with a huge career in front of him. I'm thrilled that he has agreed to take on the role of Fili. Besides his talent as an actor, Rob is also a champion sword fighter and I'm looking forward to seeing the damage he can do to a horde of marauding Goblins," is how Jackson sums him up. And Turner? "Aidan is a wonderfully gifted young actor who hails from Ireland. I'm sure he will bring enormous heart and humour to the role of Kili."

The last of the confirmed castings include Graham McTavish as Dwalin, John Callen as Oin, Stephen Hunter as Bombur, King Kong veteran Mark Hadlow as Dori and Peter Hambleton as Gloin.

Deadline also reports that Stephen Fry, Saoirse Ronan and Bill Nighy are also in the running for roles (with Nighy on the list as a possible Smaug voice), though none of them are set yet. And though we’re all expecting Ian McKellen as Gandalf and Andy Serkis as Gollum, they’ve yet to make deals. But can anyone else really be the wizard? And we’re pretty certain Serkis would resist someone trying to get into his performance capture suit.

That rumbling you hear is the avalanche of Hobbit casting still to come heading our way. Get ready, people…


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Your Comments

RE: Silmarillion
That's a damn shame,I would love to see Fingolfin v Morgoth on the big screen. More

Posted by CoxintheBox at 17:07 on 30 October 2010 | Report This Post

Martin Freeman
L: JIm R Hollander dammit b]missed opportunity big time ote] I'll join you in that cauldron of burning disappointment (not a jacuzzi by the way.) More

Posted by Emyr Thy King at 19:10 on 25 October 2010 | Report This Post

Martin Freeman
Hollander dammit b]missed opportunity big time More

Posted by JIm R at 18:58 on 25 October 2010 | Report This Post

RE: Economic Climate
L: Cruisecontroller What a waste getting Aiden Turner, Rob Kaplinsky and Rob Armitage hunks of the small screen to play dwarves!!! They should be dashing knights the heroes of the story along with Bo Bo Bagins and Gandalf. They should get some of the orgional Oompa Loompa`s from the first version of Willy Wonky to be dwarves am I missing something are they supposed to be sexy dwarves? Am I the only one who doesn`t get this and Moderators please don`t allow this post to be erased like More

Posted by crazypoker at 11:19 on 25 October 2010 | Report This Post

RE: tjsetjetjt
Martin Freeman is an incredible actor and comic-actor. He has the vast range such a role requires and would do Tolkein proud.  More

Posted by rancorpuppet at 14:43 on 24 October 2010 | Report This Post

RE: Economic Climate
What a waste getting Aiden Turner, Rob Kaplinsky and Rob Armitage hunks of the small screen to play dwarves!!! They should be dashing knights the heroes of the story along with Bo Bo Bagins and Gandalf. They should get some of the orgional Oompa Loompa`s from the first version of Willy Wonky to be dwarves am I missing something are they supposed to be sexy dwarves? Am I the only one who doesn`t get this and Moderators please don`t allow this post to be erased like my last one on this thread w More

Posted by Cruisecontroller at 00:13 on 24 October 2010 | Report This Post

RE: Economic Climate
Meh, I don't know I mean it's a hefty role and Martin - likeable as he is - I don't know, it's neil armstrong-esque leap from TV to something as big as this Good luck still I say More

Posted by Sphinx at 19:45 on 23 October 2010 | Report This Post

RE: Economic Climate
I think the part will require some quality acting. Sadly I have yet to see Freeman give anything more than a solid performance. He was the worst thing about Hitchhikers Guide (other than the script). More

Posted by sanchia at 18:40 on 23 October 2010 | Report This Post

RE: Economic Climate
L: Emyr Thy King L: The Todge Freeman i a solid choice.  I can see it working. The only other name on that list I know is McTavish aka Shouty Bastardbo.  assume with that surname and your description of him that he's Scottish then? re you implying sir that we Jocks are shouty bastards? I WON'T HAVE THAT.  but yes he is Scottish. He played a Cock er nee in Rambo though. He's also due to appear in Robin Hardy's The Wicker Tree.  Sadly the "tre More

Posted by The Todge at 23:28 on 22 October 2010 | Report This Post

.
. More

Posted by darko18 at 22:53 on 22 October 2010 | Report This Post

RE: Economic Climate
L: The Todge Freeman i a solid choice.  I can see it working. The only other name on that list I know is McTavish aka Shouty Bastardbo.  assume with that surname and your description of him that he's Scottish then? L: Bluehawk One slight problem with adapating The Silmarillion.  Christopher Tolkien owns the rights and has stated he will never give them up."My own...my precious....." I would have preferred Tom Hollander for the role of Bilbo but I More

Posted by Emyr Thy King at 19:09 on 22 October 2010 | Report This Post

Good For Him
Good for Martin Freeman, I think he'll shock a few people with how well he pulls it off. More

Posted by TheSpleen at 19:02 on 22 October 2010 | Report This Post

RE: Silmarillion
L: Bluehawk I still feel that picking stories out of the Silmarillion would make much better films. The Hobbit is just a lesser book than The Lord of the Rings, which is kinds of sjitty for a sequel. It's, ye know, for kids! J.R.R. Tolkien wrote some fantastically epic stories in the Silmarillion, which would be a fantactical step forward for the genre. We have the technology to do those stories now. Hell, I'd even propose Zack Snyder directs them, because when you read it, you KNOW he ca More

Posted by The Todge at 18:09 on 22 October 2010 | Report This Post

RE: www.buyshopping.us
I think the best news about all this is that buyshopping.us has updated it's products! nyways, I'm not a Freeman fan (maybe because I haven't really watched The Office) but I didn't think much of him in Love Actually and I thought he gave a terrible performance in A Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy - I really thought he struggled acting against SFX. But I totally trust Peter Jacksons judgment and I'll give him the benefit of the doubt, besides Jackson has recast a major role before More

Posted by Beetlejuice! at 17:15 on 22 October 2010 | Report This Post

RE: Nooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo
L: Canadian_Fall Freeman looks the part for sure, but should have been Tom Hollander.ou read this Peter!!! have been TOM!! sp; Jackson won’t. But my names Peter and I agree with you if it’s any consolation. p;   More

Posted by pete_traynor at 16:31 on 22 October 2010 | Report This Post

RE: Economic Climate
Freeman i a solid choice.  I can see it working. The only other name on that list I know is Graham McTavish aka Shouty Bastard in Rambo.  More

Posted by The Todge at 13:30 on 22 October 2010 | Report This Post

RE: Economic Climate
L: Big_Pants .  I remember everyone moaning about Elijah and Sean when they were cast and that turned out rather well didn't it?  ctually I think Sean Astin was probably the worst casting decison of all three of those films. Completely ruined what is, for me, one of the best characters in the book (his 'farmer giles' accent grated like nothing else on earth). But each to his own. Freeman may turn out to be a good decison. As for the rest, I'm really not that familier wi More

Posted by Drew_231 at 13:18 on 22 October 2010 | Report This Post

RE: Economic Climate
Oh ffs, so they're tv actors, doesn't make them any less right for the roles!  Dominic Monaghan was in bloody Hetty Wainthrop and Orlando Bloom was in an ep of Casualty or something.  Give them a chance, I'm sure Peter Jackson knows what he's doing.  I remember everyone moaning about Elijah and Sean when they were cast and that turned out rather well didn't it?  I'm very excited that the damn film is actually going to happen :) More

Posted by Big_Pants at 11:17 on 22 October 2010 | Report This Post

RE: Economic Climate
It does seem a bit odd that they've hired a bunch of TV stars.I know the Fellowship cast were mostly unknown but they had at least a lot of movie experience between them... More

Posted by hatebox at 10:38 on 22 October 2010 | Report This Post

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