Ian McKellen and Andy Serkis are following in the footsteps of their "Lord of the Rings" co-stars, Cate Blanchett and Elijah Wood, by joining the cast of "The Hobbit". They have signed up to reprise their roles as Gandalf and Gollum respectively in the two-part movie set in The Middle Earth.
Both Gandalf and Gollum were introduced in "The Hobbit" book by J.R.R. Tolkien. The wizard sets the adventure going in the story and appears throughout the novel, while Gollum who is also known as Smeagol appears in a chapter of "The Hobbit" novel and becomes an important supporting character in "The Lord of the Rings".
Orlando Bloom is also in talks to return to "The Hobbit" film as Legolas but the deal has not been sealed yet. More "LOTR" stars are likely to join the cast of the upcoming adventure movie as Deadline Hollywood reports that Christopher Lee is in talks to reprise the wizard Saruman, and Ian Holm may return as an older version of Bilbo Baggins.
"The Hobbit" has Peter Jackson on board to serve as a helmer when the production is kick started in February in New Zealand. Martin Freeman will portray main character Bilbo Baggins. Warner Bros. plans to release the first part of the movie in December 2012, followed by "The Hobbit 2" in December 2013.