It’s the dawn of war in the first trailer for The Hobbit: The Battle Of The Five Armies

Peter Jackson’s three-part adaptation of J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Hobbit concludes later in 2014 with The Hobbit: The Battle Of The Five Armies, in which the ultimate fates of the dwarves, the people of Laketown, and the dragon Smaug are decided in an epic clash that lays the groundwork for an even greater war. Fresh off an appearance at Comic-Con International in San Diego that brought a large portion of the cast together on the same stage, the studio has released the first full trailer for The Battle Of The Five Armies.

Unfolding immediately after the events of the previous film, The Desolation Of Smaug, the third and final installment of the trilogy chronicles Smaug’s assault on Laketown and the subsequent battle involving five armies assembled from the various races of Middle-earth. While this portion of the story in Tolkien’s original novel was relatively brief, it’s clear that Jackson has found fertile ground for expanding the saga of Bilbo Baggins’ adventure with this particular plot point.

The Hobbit: The Battle Of The Five Armies hits theaters December 17, 2014, and stars Ian McKellen, Martin Freeman, Richard Armitage, Evangeline Lilly, Benedict Cumberbatch, Cate Blanchett, Christopher Lee, Hugo Weaving, and a long list of other notable actors playing new and returning characters from both The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings franchises.

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