'The Hobbit' gets release date(s)

guillermo-del-toro-getty.jpg"The Hobbit" will be making its way into theaters in 2012. And also in 2013.

The adaptation of J.R.R. Tolkien's book, which predates "The Lord of the Rings," is being split into two movies. Warner Bros., which is distributing the adaptations, says the first part will arrive in December 2012, with the second one coming in December 2013.

That's later than the initial 2011 target set when the project first went into development three years ago. The Hollywood Reporter's Heat Vision blog notes, however, that next year "proved not to be a realistic date and instead served more as a guideline." When New Line and MGM announced "The Hobbit" in 2007, they didn't even have completed scripts in hand, let alone a filming schedule.

There had been some confusion about the first film's release date on Wednesday (April 28), when Imax released a schedule saying the first "Hobbit" would debut in 2013. Warner Bros. clarified the schedule shortly after that, Heat Vision says.

Guillermo del Toro ("Pan's Labyrinth," "Hellboy") is directing the movies and co-writing with the "LOTR" team of Peter Jackson, Fran Walsh and Philippa Boyens.

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Related:

'The Hobbit' starts shooting in July, says Ian McKellen

Photo credit: Getty Images
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