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MGM wants Jackson for The Hobbit

TheHobbit.jpgThe plot thickens. New Line may have dumped Peter Jackson from The Hobbit, but remember they aren't the studio who are going to make it...yet. There's still MGM in the frame as it's a joint production.

According to Variety through Cinema Blend they've quickly released a very clever marketing statement:

"...the matter of Peter Jackson directing 'The Hobbit' films is far from closed."

It's an interesting quote and reflects a story we heard back at the start of October on Filmstalker, here's a quote from it:

...in a response to the petition open letter from Theonering.net, Theo Dumont, the Manager of Public Relations for MGM Studios, says:

"Peter Jackson's phenomenal success with The Lord of the Rings trilogy makes him the first and most ideal choice for directing The Hobbit," said MGM COO Rick Sands. "MGM would be thrilled to collaborate with the Academy Award-winning director on this MGM New Line Cinema production. And, I'm sure to the delight of the 50,000 filmgoers who have petitioned us in recent weeks, demanding we bring this film to fruition, we have had a few initial conversations about the project with Mr. Jackson's representatives."

Interesting. Cinema Blend suggest that there may be a little power struggle going on for control, and that Jackson has stepped out of it. Perhaps he's just stepped to the side to let the two fight it out knowing perhaps who will win in the end. If MGM and New Line are battling over who will bring it to the screen and MGM win, will we see Jackson back? Who's really in charge of all of this publicity farce?





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Comments

Forgot to say in the story that there's rumours of Amelie director Jean-Pierre Jeunet helming the Hobbit. I would suspect that would be through the New Line production route.

Man, this is sounding more and more like the Indy 4 production!

Peter and Fran undoubtedly made their release to TheOneRing.net to get pressure put on New Line to comply. It was a fairly transparent move.

Most interesting of all the comments made so far over at theonering.net is that from Richard Taylor at Weta, saying they'd be happy to work on the film even if Peter wasn't directing. And his comment about having first heard of the story by reading it on the web says everything you need to know about Jackson's relationship with his fellow directors and the communication he has with them!

Ian, what do you think of the previous MGM statement though? It was made before New Line's and is very clear on who they want to direct.

I think that's the most interesting comment of all. After all, even if the guy does treat his staff badly and he's not a great person, if the studio want him...

Success can do a lot of weird things to people, what a shame if Mr Jackson allowed it to go to his head.

MGM's position is completely understandable. They've never worked with Jackson and so can only see the positive press and the huge fan base he has and the value of that in terms of box office.

New Line, primarily through Ordesky, know all the problems and the reality (as do Universal through having worked on Kong) so have some experience to go on, which is presumably what they've based their decision on.

I'm just amazed that this is the first we're really hearing about this behaviour of his. It's not something that's been widely reported at all. I did know that he pushes the studio a lot to get his vision, but we've heard nothing but praise for the man on set from his actors.

I've heard he's ok as well, people rave don't they?

Love his work and love Jeunet's too. As a bibliophile I appreciate the way that the different physical aspects of two different books--different illustrators, binding, paper, typeface--give the objects their own 'character.'

If Jeunut made the other stories into films then the different design choices he makes might give the films a character that is different Jackson's but would look good next to it.

Imagine Jeunut doing a forest scene in Middle Earth--everything would be green and dark and weird. Um...

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