In an ideal world, Peter Jackson would right now be deep in the production on the two Hobbit films that he has been wanting to make, further exploring the world of J.R.R Tolkein that he already brought to the screen with the Lord Of The Rings trilogy. However, we live in a world where New Line Pictures held up production because they didn’t wish to share their arcane accounting methods which somehow proved that despite pulling in over a billion dollars at the box office but, Jackson’s Lord Of The Rings trilogy still might not have made quite the profit as one might think.
But now Jackson and New Line have made up and are moving forward on the films. Though, with him currently working on finishing his current film The Lovely Bones and his commitment to doing one installment of Steven Spielberg’s upcoming Tintin trilogy, it looks like he won’t have time to write and direct the films himself.
Enter Guillermo Del Toro, the director who has shown his skill in creating smart fantasy films such as Pan’s Labyrinth as well as fantastical adventure films such as Hellboy and Blade 2. The Hollywood Reporter is saying that Del Toro is currently in talks to helm the Hobbit movies, with Jackson serving as executive producer, overseeing the production.
Although the current Writer’s Guild strike has prevented any hiring of screenwriters for the films (though we wouldn’t be surprised if Rings’ scribes Fran Walsh and Phillipa Bowens were involved), New Line has already budgeted the films at $150 million a piece and would like to get them into production for a 2010 and 2011 release.