We've been hearing rumors that Orlando Bloom would be appearing in The Hobbit since autumn of last year. Now we have confirmation.
We already knew Elijah Wood would be reprising Frodo for the story, and that he would appear as a part of the narrative frame for the tale, as Bilbo sits him down and tells him the story of how he came to have the ring.
And yes, Peter Jackson recently confirmed Orlando Bloom would also be returning to reprise his character. However, there is but no word if he will be sitting with Frodo, listening to the tale, or if he will be part of the story itself.
Some had theorized about the rumors that Bloom would be playing the part of Legolas’ father Thranduil, but now we know that the character Legolas will actually be depicted in the film.
Likely this will only surface as a cameo. It seems very unlikely to me that Peter Jackson would choose to insert Legolas in the story in any very active way, although the character was alive (and even already adult) at the time the story takes place.
Since the characters do pass through the realm of the elves and speak with Thranduil at one point, it makes sense that Legolas might be sitting nearby or something. He doesn’t even have to speak. They could be bringing in Bloom to just put on the costume for one afternoon and sit to the side of the King of the elves looking on impassively. That would make perfect sense, and maintain the canon without error.
However they fit him in, I’m personally happy with it. Jackson did such an incredible job with The Lord of the Rings, I’m willing to trust in his artistic vision.
If it was anyone else I wouldn’t be giving him the benefit of the doubt like this, but this is Peter Jackson. He’s a master craftsman, and knows what he is doing. I would be very surprised if The Hobbit did not turn out just as amazingly as the trilogy.