What do you think about the decision to split The Hobbit into three movies?
Kiwi film king Peter Jackson's decision to turn the Hobbit into three movies shows he has run out of creative juice and has "nothing else to offer", a film critic says.
In The Guardian overnight, entertainment blogger James Russell wrote that Jackson was ''running on empty''.
As a film maker, Jackson has been celebrated as one of New Zealand's most successful players on the international stage, and his success is co-related to his creative endeavours and the string of films he has under his belt.
When he announced in late July that The Hobbit, which was originally to be made into two films, would become three, critics began questioning why.
When three Lord of the Rings books could be made into three films, why did it also take three films to tell the story of The Hobbit, which was told in just one book, they asked.
Die-hard Hobbit fans, however, were elated.
"I never want these movies to end," wrote one fan on Jackson's Facebook page. "I hope this means three more hours of special features as well!" wrote another.
Others were not as kind, with writers suggesting it was a blatant money grab, and readers agreeing with Russell that it could be that Jackson was out of ideas.
"I think something much more dispiriting has motivated the decision: creative stagnation," Russell wrote.
He said Jackson did not have a high profile before making the Lord of the Rings, so he was an "unusual figure" to have been asked to take it on. The trilogy ended up not only being a box office smash, but also "creatively daring", Russell said.
Despite King Kong and The Lovely Bones following, Jackson had failed to recreate the success of the trilogy, he said.
When the original director, Guillermo del Toro, dropped out, Jackson took the position.
"When Jackson took on LOTR, he was an ambitious outsider with a daring project. Now he is an established director on his uppers, revisiting past glories in lieu of anything better to do. Directing The Hobbit is arguably a sign that Jackson is out of ideas," Russell said.
However, readers have pointed out to Russell that Jackson is also working on the second Tintin movie, and that The Hobbit trilogy is likely to include more material than is contained in the book.
The move to make it into three films would be a godsend for New Zealand's film industry, and would help to continue to pump millions of dollars into the economy.
When Jackson announced the move in late July, he said in a statement that the decision was made after he, his partner Fran Walsh and scriptwriter Philippa Boyens watched an early cut of the first movie and a large chunk of the second.
"We were really pleased with the way the story was coming together, in particular, the strength of the characters and the cast who have brought them to life. All of which gave rise to a simple question: do we take this chance to tell more of the tale?"
We now all know the answer to that.
"We know how much of the story of Bilbo Baggins, the Wizard Gandalf, the Dwarves of Erebor, the rise of the Necromancer, and the Battle of Dol Guldur will remain untold if we do not take this chance," Jackson said.
Russell admitted he could yet be left eating humble pie.
- © Fairfax NZ News
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