Just a month after Peter Jackson announced that The Hobbit would be turned into a trilogy, Warner Bros. released the name of the flick's second installment and the release date for the third film Friday.
The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug will be released Dec. 13, 2013; the third installment in the series, The Hobbit: There and Back Again, will hit theaters July 18, 2014.
Jackson originally planned to only create two films for the Hobbit series, but decided to add a third when he realized he had enough material to do so.
The Hobbit: There and Back Again (the title will remain unchanged) was to have been the second and last Hobbit film before the change was made.
"We were really pleased with the way the story was coming together, in particular, the strength of the characters and the cast who have brought them to life," Jackson said via his Facebook page. "All of which gave rise to a simple question: Do we take this chance to tell more of the tale? And the answer from our perspective as the filmmakers, and as fans, was an unreserved ‘yes.'"
Hobbit fans won't have to wait too much longer for the first flick of the trilogy.
The first film, The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, opens Dec. 14.