Andy Serkis Signed As Gollum In ‘Hobbit’

EXCLUSIVE: I’m told that Andy Serkis has closed his deal to bring back Gollum in The Hobbit, the two films that Peter Jackson will direct in New Zealand starting in February. Serkis will join returning cast members Cate Blanchett and Elijah Wood. Wood’s participation was made official last week after Deadline first revealed his negotiations. According to sources, others who appeared in The Lord of the Rings poised to return at this point include Ian McKellen (who’s still working out a deal to return as Gandalf in a major role),  Christopher Lee is in talks to reprise the wizard Saruman, and Ian Holm to return as an older version of Bilbo Baggins (Martin Freeman is playing that title role in the two new movies). I’ve written in the past about a possible reprise of Orlando Bloom’s Legolas, but it’s unclear at this point if he’ll be back.

There was no confirmation from the Serkis’ camp, but the character certainly fits a small but important role in the storyline of the JRR Tolkien book. Bilbo is on an epic quest with Gandalf and 13 dwarves led by their King, Thorin Oakenshield, to reclaim the Lonely Mountain and strike down the talking dragon Smaug (I’d heard last year Bill Nighy was a possible to voice Smaug, but have heard nothing since). During that journey, Bilbo wanders into Gollum’s lair and finds the Ring of Power. Serkis will likely be there early in the shoot. The chamelon actor, who has become a fixture in Jackson’s movies, will do reshoots for The Adventures of Tintin: The Secret of the Unicorn. Serkis plays Captain Haddock in the film, a collaboration between Jackson and Steven Spielberg. Spielberg directed the first Tintin film, but it’s being posted at Jackson’s New Zealand facilities. The Hobbit, a partnership between Warner Bros and MGM, is now being fully financed by Warner Bros, which will distribute worldwide.

Comments (22)

  • And Hugo Weaving as Elrond?

    Seriously. Elrond was actually in “The Hobbit” book, unlike Frodo.

    (Mind you, I don’t mind a little flashbackery with Elijah Wood and Ian Holm.)

    Comment by ety3 — Monday January 10, 2011 @ 2:12pm PST  
    • Seriously is right.
      Ian Holm, Elijah Wood, Cate Blachett, Christopher Lee — Jackson is adding millions/ to the budget bringing back these actors whose characters have nothing to do with the text. But, what the hey? He’ll make it all back on the first midnight show.

      Comment by MirkwoodMaven — Monday January 10, 2011 @ 2:24pm PST  
      • The budget is $500 mil, he isn’t adding anything to it for this. The script was written ages ago, and Jackson mentioned way back then that people would return. If WB approved the script, then they approved the budget for characters in it.

        Elijah is no stranger to taking a pay cut to do something he wants to do and believes in (evidenced by plenty of indie films under his belt). People seem to forget this kid had tons of money well before he was ever Frodo. He doesn’t want or need half the budget on his paycheck.

        Comment by Mark — Monday January 10, 2011 @ 3:41pm PST  
      • Jackson, Walsh, Boyens and Del Toro are adding bits of Tolkien canon into The Hobbit to fill in the missing pieces of the book, and give a bit more meat and drama to the story. The White Council and Dol Guldur storylines are most likely going to be in the story in order to add some more action from Tolkien’s history. When The Hobbit was written, Middle Earth hadn’t been expanded yet, but with everything filled out by Tolkien, its easier to build some continuity and connect the stories.

        Also, Hugo Weaving has been mentioned in several Deadline stories, just not in this one. Considering he plays prominently in the story, he’ll most likely be back. Have no fear.

        Comment by JohnDoe — Monday January 10, 2011 @ 3:41pm PST  
        • I thought someone else had the rights to The Silmarillion. From where in the canon are the other bits being added–the Books of Lost Tales?

          Comment by dogsbody — Monday January 10, 2011 @ 4:27pm PST  
          • WB/Jackson have rights to the printed contents of The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings. That includes the Appendices in the latter, which in my copy, is at least another 100+ pages of events summarizing events before, during and after both books.

            Comment by Mark — Monday January 10, 2011 @ 5:21pm PST  
          • The apppendices [and some of the lengthy and expository fireside chats between Gandalf and Frodo early in FOTR] in Tolkien’s text — much like some of the Arwen/Aragorn/Elrond stuff in Jackson’s trilogy, the reportage when script was under construction stated that they were pulling material the appendices spell out into narrative form, which should “plug” the gap of years between the end of “HOBBIT-proper” and the beginning of FOTR.

            Comment by Eric Dale Eubanks — Friday January 14, 2011 @ 7:34am PST  
    • flashback? ummmm o_O

      Comment by keyboard — Monday January 10, 2011 @ 2:43pm PST  
    • I’ve seen that Frodo apparently will be used in the opening of the movie, using the Red Book of Westmarch to tie the two sets of films together.

      Comment by antron — Monday January 10, 2011 @ 3:37pm PST  
  • Finally….I can breathe a sigh of relief the ring is back in good (or bad?) hands…go Gollum! Go Andy Serkis!

    Comment by Lord of the Fans — Monday January 10, 2011 @ 2:21pm PST  
  • Great news! I’m particularly pleased Christopher Lee may return as Saruman, and it will be good to see Ian Holm again.

    Comment by Anonymous — Monday January 10, 2011 @ 2:37pm PST  
  • Or flash forwardery in Frodo’s case, because he would not even have been BORN when the events of the Hobbit take place.

    Comment by Anonymous — Monday January 10, 2011 @ 2:45pm PST  
  • Christopher Lee? OMG, awesome!

    Comment by JohnDoe — Monday January 10, 2011 @ 2:49pm PST  
  • Any news or rumours about Bard or Thranduil?

    Comment by sandra — Monday January 10, 2011 @ 2:50pm PST  
    • I heard David Tennant for Thranduil

      Comment by Ben — Monday January 10, 2011 @ 4:21pm PST  
  • You mean “flashforwardy”? I don’t think that would make any sense, however.

    The only way Elijah Wood and Ian Holm can reasonably be in those movies is if the old Bilbo is actually seen telling his story (the actual content of “The Hobbit”) to Frodo in a “How I Met Your Ring” kind of way.

    Comment by BugMeNot — Monday January 10, 2011 @ 3:04pm PST  
    • “How I Met Your Ring”! Haah, hilarious =D great.

      Comment by Pousette — Monday January 10, 2011 @ 3:53pm PST  
  • Gollum, you are an inspiration! Your work in trying to get that ring — I loved it. You keep on doing what you’re doing, and the rest of us will be inspired!!!

    Comment by bobby the saint — Tuesday January 11, 2011 @ 7:18am PST  
  • J.R.R. who??? All hail Hollywood.

    Comment by fan from the 70's — Tuesday January 11, 2011 @ 5:11pm PST  
  • Can’t wait to see the first trailer! When do you think we’ll see it?

    Comment by Wendell — Tuesday January 11, 2011 @ 7:27pm PST  
  |  More Comments

Sorry, comments are closed for this article.