First Official Image From The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug

Yesterday, one of the weirdest things happened when an image from the third The Hobbit film was released before an image from the second film had ever been released. This has now been remedied as the first image from the second film, The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug is now online (via EW).

Fans of the book will recognize what is going on in this image and it will no doubt bring up the question: “If this happens in the second film, what’s left for the third?” The third film, The Hobbit: There and Back Again, is said to draw from the over one hundred pages of appendices written by Tolkien that include what happens afterward.

“The dragon is a huge, wonderful, amazing part of the story, but it doesn’t end there,” said writer/producer Philippa Boyens. “Everyone can suspect there’s a rather large battle in film three.”

The first film in the series, The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, will hit theaters next week in 2D, 3D, and IMAX on December 14. The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug will be released on December 13, 2013, and the final entry, The Hobbit: There and Back Again, will be released on July 18, 2014.