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Home > Blog > December 2013 > Friday Five: The Hobbit

If it's December, it must be time for another film full of hobbits, elves, dwarves, wizards, orcs, trolls, dragons, and other fantastic creatures to debut at movie theaters!

For five out of the past twelve years now, since 2001's initial Lord of the Rings adaptation by director and special fx guru Peter Jackson, beloved author J.R.R. Tolkien's Middle-earth adventures The Lord of The Rings, The Two Towers, The Return of the King, and The Hobbit have ruled at the box office as both critical and fan favorites.

Once again, just like Tolkien's works ushered in the heyday of fantasy writing and art of the late 1960s through the entire 1970s, everyone seems to have Hobbit fever, from video games to parodies and everything in between in the realm of pop culture.

Check out the high-definition trailer for the newest installment in the Hobbit film trilogy below...

Sorry, I just never get tired of viewing the totally campy and pseudo-psychedelic silliness that is Leonard Nimoy singing "The Ballad of Bilbo Baggins," haha!


Here is the REAL trailer for The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug


Before you hit the theaters (or even while you are waiting in line to buy your ticket), check out this "Friday Five" of supplemental reading to enhance your Hobbit-viewing experience!

The Complete Guide to Middle-earth by The Complete Guide to Middle-earth
(available in book format)

THEE reference guide for all things related to Middle-earth. A comprehensive A - Z guide to all of the characters, creatures, animals, languages, places, subjects, and themes in Tolkien's sprawling universe. Also included are illustrated maps of lands and locations, as well as page number cross references to some of the more popular editions of the books. Essential reading!

The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey Chronicles: Art and Design by The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey Chronicles: Art & Design
(available in book format)

A great behind-the-scenes look at The Hobbit, this oversized collection is packed with more than 1,000 images of concept artwork, photographs, sculptures, development paintings, and special fx models by the artists at Weta Workshop who brought Middle-earth to life on the silver screen. There is also a special fold-out map printed in glow-in-the-dark ink and a giant four page fold-out of Bilbo's contract. It's like the special features plus director commentary on a DVD all rolled into one, but in book form!


The Silmarillion by The Silmarillion
(available in book and ebook formats)

The Silmarillion is a sprawling collection of Tolkien’s histories of Middle-earth, set thousands of years before The Lord of the Rings. They were unfinished when he died, his son Christopher completing and publishing them in 1977. Because of this, it is one of the more debated texts in Tolkien's bibliography. The Silmarillion is a challenging read, but ultimately rewarding for readers who are up to the challenge.


The Hobbit: The Classic BBS Radio Production The Hobbit: The Classic BBC Radio Production
(available in audiobook format)

Adapted into eight half-hour episodes for BBC Radio 4 and broadcast from September to November in 1968, The Hobbit radio play was thought lost for years until fan-taped copies were discovered and issued in 1988. The show included unique sound effects for all of the troll, goblin, and elf characters. The radio dramatization was performed by a full cast of mostly Shakespearean actors, following the plot of the original novel except for the addition of an actual narrator separate from Bilbo. Everything sounds grander and larger-than-life when voiced by British actors! A rare and candid interview with Tolkien himself rounds out this stellar set.


Wisdom of The Shire by The Wisdom of the Shire
(available in book format)

“Prosperity is not measured in gold, but rather in fine health, good company and delicious things to eat and drink.”  Who knew Hobbits had the answers to all of life's questions and problems?! Following the path that books like The Tao of Pooh have forged in the philosophy-meets-self-help genre, The Wisdom of the Shire illustrates important life lessons we can glean from Bilbo Baggins and the lives of the hobbits. Author Noble Smith shows how a snug hobbit-hole is actually just a state of mind and explores practical advice on a range of topics from dealing with the "Gollums" in your life to striving to live in harmony with nature.

Browse our catalog for more books, ebooks, audiobooks, music, and dvds of J.R.R. Tolkien's fantastical worlds!
You can also check out our excellent Science Fiction and Fantasy Online Exhibition which has lots of terrific Tolkien entries!

Tags: Friday Five, film

The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug movie poster
The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug movie poster
The Hobbit first edition book cover, illustrated by J.R.R. Tolkien
The Hobbit first edition book cover, illustrated by J.R.R. Tolkien
J.R.R. Tolkien
J.R.R. Tolkien
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