Jackson's Hobbit: the journey begins
By Gyles Beckford
WELLINGTON (Reuters) - Film maker Peter Jackson wants to scare children with his latest movie - and perhaps even a few grown ups.
The first of the Hobbit movie trilogy - "The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey" - is about to hit theatres, and Jackson says he's tried to hold true to its roots as a children's fantasy story, with scary bits.
"If they're scared of the trolls great, if they're scared of the goblins great, they know there are no goblins, they know there are no trolls, it's a safe kind of danger," he says.
The film, produced by MGM and Time Warner Inc, is the fourth in the Oscar-winning Jackson's blockbuster "Lord of the Rings" film franchise, based on the books of author J.R.R. Tolkien.
It follows the journey of hobbit Bilbo Baggins, reluctantly pushed into travelling with 13 dwarves to steal treasure from a dragon and regain their homeland. During his travels, he comes by the ring that he later passes onto kinsman Frodo Baggins, which was at the core of the "Rings" trilogy.
Jackson says he's worked to keep distance between the Hobbit, published in 1937, and the much darker Lord of the Rings, which came out nearly 20 years later.
"The Lord of the Rings has an apocalyptic sort of heavy themic end-of-the world quality to it, which the Hobbit doesn't, which is one of the delights of it," he said.
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