His name has bobbed up once or twice in the past in relation to the film, but now, thanks to Peter Jackson’s latest Facebook posting, Stephen Fry is confirmed to be part of The Hobbit’s cast, alongside fellow new arrivals Ryan Gage and Conan Stevens.
Yes, you can expect a flurry of thrilled tweets from the King of All Social Media himself as he takes the part of The Master of Laketown. Lake-Town, or Esgaroth, is a wooden construction sitting, as you might expect, on the Long Lake, and appears in Tolkien's tome as a trading post between men and elves, and a way stop for Bilbo and the dwarves. It has a history with the dragon Smaug and the elected leader of the town isn’t exactly quick to welcome Bilbo and his company when they arrive. He’s described as a nervous, greedy type. “I've known Stephen for several years, and we're developing a Dambusters movie together,” writes Jackson. “In addition to his writing skills, he's a terrific actor and will create a very memorable Master for us.”
But the Master won’t be alone in his money-grabbing ways. Gage has been cast as Alfrid, the man’s dodgy civil servant. According to Jackson, Gage scored the role after impressing the director and his team with his performance in a smaller part.
Finally, there’s the aptly named Conan Stevens, a towering type who will be playing an Orc named Azgog. You can see a picture of him posing with Jackson on the page.
The Hobbit’s cast and crew are heading towards a planned production break that will allow them to get some editing and visual effects work done, while also preparing for some hefty scenes scheduled for the next block of shooting. Back to work, you lot... We've got a film we want to see.