Anyway, one can chalk up the film’s success due to improvement in special effects, what with more improved use of motion capture that allows for the capture of an actor’s finer movement details and expressions. However one can also credit An Unexpected Journey’s success to the excellent acting of its cast, especially that of Martin Freeman, who plays as the naïve but adventurous Bilbo Baggins and Richard Armitage who takes on the role of embittered and determined dwarf king Thorin Oakenshield. The second installment, titled The Desolation of Smaug, will be due this year in December while its third installment, There and Back Again is due for release in the 14th of December next year.
So far, Richard Armitage has gone on to note that the second film may take a while to finish but it will be well worth the wait as the audience will be able to see a lot of character development as the plot of the Hobbit continues to lead up to its finale. Richard has stated that while Thorin Oakenshield will also get plenty of development as the films continue, there has been little time to show a lighter side of the character as the long journey towards the dragon is taking its toll on him much the same way that Frodo’s Ring became heavier and heavier as the plot wore on. Richard Armitage has compared it to a sickness that gets stronger as they approach Erebor as the weight of the tragedy that befell Erebor burdens both Thorin’s mind and soul, darkening his character and the story considerably.
It should also be noted that Thorin Oakenshield’s character began to develop in the first film when, at first, he simply saw Bilbo Baggins as a simple Halfling and more of a liability than any actual help. It isn’t until the end of the movie, when Thorin gets to see just how brave Bilbo is despite all the troubles that are besieging the company that he finally realizes the little fellow’s importance. When Bilbo jumps in to protect Thorin with great risk to his own life, the dwarf king relents in his views of the Hobbit and finally accepts him as a full member of the company.