Weep, little Fanboy, weep
Peter Jackson did what many thought would never happen by creating three Lord of the Rings movies that didn’t suck. In the process, he made megabank for New Line Cinemas and for himself. And plans have been since then for him to direct The Hobbit.
But not now. Jackson’s production company apparently filed a lawsuit against New Line awhile ago over some accounting (read: more money) and has refused to do the Hobbit movie until it is settled. New Line’s option on the film rights is apparently going to expire, so Jackson is off the project, as well as another “prequel” that New Line seems to have pulled out of their ass. You can read Jackson’s rambling account of this here.
Who will replace Jackson? Who knows. Somehow I doubt it will keep the nerds from standing in long lines outside the movie theater wearing cloaks and shouting “You shall not pass!”*
* Disclaimer: I am a fan of Tolkein’s books and Jackson’s film interpretation of them. However, I am not this big of a geek.