Cate Blanchett will return to Middle Earth in 'The Hobbit'
Warner Bros. and MGM announced today that Cate Blanchett, Ken Stott, Sylvester McCoy and Mikael Persbrandt have all joined the cast of Peter Jackson's long awaited two-part adaptation of "The Hobbit."
Blanchett reprises her role as Galadriel, the Lady of Lothlorien from "The Lord of the Rings" trilogy. The Oscar winner previously appeared in all three of the "Lord of the Rings" films; "The Fellowship of the Ring," "The Two Towers" and "The Return of the King." She was most recently seen in Ridley Scott's "Robin Hood" and will appear in Joe Wright's thriller "Hanna" this spring.
In a statement released by the studio, Jackson says "“Cate is one of my favorite actors to work with and I couldn’t be more thrilled to have her reprise the role she so beautifully brought to life in the earlier films."
The rest of the international cast includes Ken Stott, best known for his work in "Charlie Wilson's War," as Dwarf Lord Balin; Sylvester McCoy, who you may recognize from "Doctor Who," will portray the wizard Radagast the Brown; Swedish thespian Mikael Persbrandt ("Everlasting Moments") is on board as the shape shifter Beorn and British actor Ryan Gage will play Drodo Baggins. Kiwi's Jed Brophy will play the dwarf Nori and William Kirchner ("Legend of the Seeker") and Thorin Oakensheild are also on board.
Jackson also remarked on Ken Scott, “Fran and I have long been fans of Ken’s work and are excited he will be joining us on this journey.” It also appears Mikael Persbrandt made quite an impression as Jackson added, “The role of Beorn is an iconic one and Mikael was our first choice for the part. Since seeing him read for the role we can’t imagine anyone else playing this character.”
Previously announced cast members include Martin Freeman as Bilbo Baggins, Richard Armitage, Aidan Turner, Rob Kazinsky, Graham McTavish, John Callen, Stephen Hunter, Mark Hadlow, Peter Hambleton, James Nesbitt and newcomer Adam Brown.
The studios still have not landed on official release dates for either of the two installments of "The Hobbit," but the first part is expected to hit theaters in December, 2012. The second should follow a year later in December, 2013.
Production on "The Hobbit" will begin this February in New Zealand.