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Peter Jackson to Produce but not Direct The Hobbit

Peter Jackson to Produce — But Not Direct — The Hobbit

The long-held disagreements between Peter Jackson and his Lord of the Rings studio New Line are being put aside as the two parties discuss their future collaboration on The Hobbit prequels to the Lord of the Rings. Jackson has agreed to serve as executive producer on the Hobbit films — but he will not direct.

There will be not one, but two prequel films shot simultaneously — similar to how the Lord of the Rings films were done. One will release in 2010 with the second one following up in 2011.

Jackson seems quite content with this arrangement, stating "I'm very pleased that we've been able to put our differences behind us, so that we may begin a new chapter with our old friends at New Line. We are delighted to continue our journey through Middle Earth." No word on possible directors, though Peter Weir and Sam Raimi have been oft-rumored names in connection with the project.

What do you think about this news? Could this continued "journey through Middle Earth" be as good without Peter Jackson?

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