After the rousing box-office and critical success of the three Lord of the Rings films a few years back, it seemed like a no-brainer that J.R.R. Tolkein‘s book The Hobbit, which tells the story of Bilbo Baggins years before the events in the LOTR books, would be made into a blockbuster itself.
Then the lawyers showed up…
In 2008, lawyers for the Tolkein estate and the LOTR books’ U.S. publisher HarperCollins filed a lawsuit against New Line Cinema, claiming the movie studio had done a bit of wizardry with its accounting of the film’s box-office receipts. Together, they claimed they were owed the princely sum of $150 million.
The lawsuit also put a temporary halt to New Line’s development of the Hobbit film, which is still slated to be directed by Pan’s Labyrinth helmer Guillermo del Toro and executive produced by Peter Jackson, who directed, co-wrote and produced the three Rings films.
But luckily for everyone, all parties came to an agreement on Tuesday, and while money matters were not made public, Christopher Tolkien, the son of J.R.R. said in a statement, “New Line may now proceed with its proposed films of The Hobbit.”