The cast is official, and despite the labor disputes that are threatening to move the production from New Zealand to a location in Europe, The Hobbit is finally on the path of becoming reality following its official greenlight. And as if to make sure that it is for real, the main cast has been announced. Below is the cast that will make up the band of dwarves that will accompany Bilbo, as reported by Deadline.
Martin Freeman (Bilbo Baggins)
Freeman (Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy) has been the odds on favorite for some time now, but a possible conflict with the BBC series Sherlock– in which he stars as a modern day Dr. John Watson– nearly derailed it. Jackson and the studio both wanted Freeman though, and following a bit of rescheduling, Freeman committed to play Bilbo. The guy even kind of looks like Ian Holm, the actor who played Bilbo in the Lord of the Rings Trilogy.
Richard Armitage (Thorin Oakenshield)
Although Bilbo is the star of the film and Gandalf will be a huge focus as well, the plot revolves around the life of Thorin, the leader of the dwarves that take Gandalf and Bilbo on a quest to retrieve Thorin’s kingdom’s fortune from Smaug the Dragon. Armitage (Robin Hood the series) recently landed a role in Captain America: The First Avenger, so the actor’s star seems to be on the rise.
John Callen (Oin)
Callen has made a career recently playing in movies and TV shows for children and young adults. Most recently he was in the TV show Power Rangers Jungle Fury, and before that, the movies Treasure Island Kids.
Mark Hadlow (Dori)
Hadlow has been working as an actor since 1979, usually in Australian and New Zealand productions. This will be the second time he has worked with Peter Jackson, the first being a small part in King Kong.
Peter Hambleton (Gloin)
Mostly unknown outside of his native New Zealand, Hambleton has starred in both TV shows and in movies.
Stephen Hunter (Bombur)
Mostly unknown on these shores, Hunter is a TV actor who has worked primarily in Australia and New Zealand.
Rob Kazinsky (Fili)
Kazinsky is another actor who you may not have heard of unless you are a fan of the British show Eastenders, but he is also a name that you will likely be hearing more and more of. Along with landing the role of Fili in The Hobbit, Kazinsky will soon be starring in the post-apocalyptic action flick Timeless, as well as a role in the George Lucas scripted movie about the Tuskegee Airmen, Red Tail.
Graham McTavish (Dwalin)
McTavish is one of those actors who you might recognize from various roles, but whose name you might not know. McTavish has a diverse career. For example he was in the recent film Secretariat, and before that he played a mercenary in Rambo. He has also done a good deal of voice work, especially for video games.
Aidan Turner (Kili)
Turner is best known for his role as Mitchell, a vampire trying to live among humans in the British show Being Human. The show is being remade in America with a new cast, but Turner is not involved.
Although they have yet to sign contracts, Sir Ian McKellan, Andy Serkis, Cate Blanchett, and Hugo Weaving are all expected to return as Gandalf, Gollum, Galadriel, and Elrond respectively.
Sylvester McCoy and David Tennant, both of Doctor Who fame are said to be awaiting offers, with McCoy set to play Radagast the Brown, while it is unknown who Tennant might play. Bill Nighy is also expected to voice Smaug the Dragon, and Michael Fassbender who will be playing the younger Magneto in the upcoming X-Men: First Class is said to be in the running for an unnamed role as well.
The Hobbit will be split into two films, with Part 1 due out in 2012.