Last week there were what you'd call "rumblings" in Hollywood - this week it's officially a fact. Yes, The Hobbit, like the Lord of the Rings trilogy, will indeed be a three part series.
Much like the reaction to Peter Jackson making the film at 48 frames a second, this decision hasn't been, shall we say, totally widely embraced, especially by Tolkien stalwarts.
Once word started getting around about this, veteran Hollywood reporter Mike Fleming, who is also a big Tolkien fan, wrote on Deadline he's "concerned" about The Hobbit being turned into a three-parter, because there may not be enough story to turn it into a trilogy. (Frankly, Return of the King, which was a remarkable ending to the trilogy, and the best of the three, was probably also half an hour too long).
The L.A. Times opined that by the time the third movie rolls around in 2014, "we'll have already gorged ourselves on [The] Hobbit. Even though a sequel-obsessed Hollywood rarely acknowledges it, you can have too much of a good thing." Cinema Blend chimed in with a report headlined, "Is a Third Hobbit Movie a Creative Risk or a Cash Grab?"
And of course, a lot of people who write about Hollywood love to complain about the endless parade of remakes and sequels, us included, so these kinds of reports, including this one, aren't anything new.
Another problem we Hollywood writers love to complain about as well is indeed the whole concept of "too much of a good thing," as the Times mentioned above.
Personally, I like to use the phrase "overstuffing the turkey," because it's funny to imagine a turkey being stuffed until it exploded, but as much as we want more at the end of a great movie, there's also times we feel like we ate too much at the end of one too.
I would like to think there's enough goodwill towards Jackson and his treatment of the Hobbit films that the fans will absolutely be back for more in droves, and they'll absolutely love it, even if there's a lot to bite off and chew.
Lastly, doing a little detective work, Collider tracked down some domain names that could be the title of the third Hobbit film including Desolation of Smaug and Riddles in the Dark.Desolation of Smaug and Riddles in the Dark.