Over at Weta Holics, Peter Jackson and Guillermo del Toro, the two bigwigs behind the upcoming film adaptation of The Hobbit answered a bucketload of questions about the upcoming movies.

Fans were invited to a live chat with the two filmakers and were able to ask the questions they wanted to know. Over 7,000 questions were submitted in total (!!!), and obviously the two were not able to answer them all, but there’s a huge wealth of knowledge about The Hobbit and it’s sequel.

Of interesting note:

at this point in time the plan is to write for the rest of this year and start early conceptual designs. 2009 will be dedicated to pre-production on both movies and 2010 will be the year we shoot both films back to back. Post productin follows one film at a time with The Hobbit being released Dec 2011, and F2 release Dec 2012. That is the schedule in about as much detail as we have ourselves at the moment.

And, in regards to the decision to hire del Toro as director:

I’ll talk more about this in a later question, but watching his films, he has respect for fantasy. He understands it, he’s not frightened by it. Guillermo also understands character, and how the power of any movie is almost always linked to how closely we empathize with characters within the story. His work shows great care and love for the main characters he creates. He also has supreme confidence with design, and visual effects. So many film makers are scared of visual effects – which is no crime, but tough if you’re doing one of these movies!

If we disagree, the director has to win, because you should never force a director to shoot something they don’t believe in. But we’re both reasonably practical and ego-free, and I believe that if we disagree, we both have the ability to express our differing theorys – state our case, like lawyers – and between us, work out what’s best for the movie.

You can find the interview HERE or download a PDF copy HERE.

Thanks to SF Crowsnest for the heads up!