Middle-earth is about to be seen in a whole new way. Peter Jackson’s groundbreaking The Lord of the Rings trilogy and The Hobbit trilogy will be released on 4K Ultra HD for the first time ever this December.
Sean Astin, who played hobbit Samwise Gamgee in Lord of the Rings, made the announcement and said Jackson has been personally remastering the films. Each trilogy will be released separately and include both the theatrical and Extended Editions together for the first time. The Lord of the Rings trilogy will also include a replica of the One Ring for fans to obsess over. There is no word on what special features it will include, but presumably it will have the extensive features the previous DVD and Blu-ray releases of the trilogies have had. They will be released on December 1.
After the December release of the sets, there will be a complete boxset of all six films with the 4K Ultra HD Middle-Earth Ultimate Collector’s Edition. The collection will feature new bonus material for all the films as well as the remastered trilogies on Blu-ray.
The Lord of the Rings followed the adventure of Frodo Baggins as he was forced to travel across Middle-earth to destroy the One Ring, a weapon of ultimate doom before its master Sauron could regain it. The trilogy was made back-to-back-to-back and blew away the box office, earning a total of $2.981 billion with the trilogy’s concluding chapter The Return of the King winning every Academy Award it was nominated for, including Best Picture and Best Director for Jackson.
The Hobbit trilogy was a prequel to Lord of the Rings and focused on Frodo’s uncle Bilbo and how he came in possession of the Ring through his journey with Gandalf and a group of dwarves to steal from Smaug, a very fearsome dragon. The Hobbit trilogy was not quite as well received by fans and critics and did not have nearly the same level of impact in pop culture either, but still earned a collective of $2.935 billion at the box office.
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Ricky Church – Follow me on Twitter for more movie news and nerd talk.