When the movie was promoted with a panel at San Diego Comic Con, several fans camped outside the hall the day before the panel in order to get seats. In the middle of the night, the fans were woken up by cast members Lee Pace and Andy Serkis, who greeted the waiting fans and delivered autographs and photos for hours. In the end, Pace passed out from exhaustion, and shared a mattress with a fan.
This is the last movie featuring legendary screen actor Sir Christopher Lee (Saruman the White) to be completed and released before his passing on June 7, 2015 at age ninety-three. Lee was one of a handful of cast members to star in both The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit trilogies.
Several cast members kept props from this movie when shooting wrapped. Martin Freeman kept his sword and prosthetic ears, while Richard Armitage kept the original Orcrist-sword, and Lee Pace kept his elven-sword, which he keeps in his umbrella stand.
In the book, everything is seen from Bilbo's perspective. The first part of the Battle of the Five Armies is witnessed by him in one chapter; the second part happens off-screen because Bilbo is rendered unconscious, but is retrospectively described to him in the next chapter. In this movie, the entire battle takes up nearly half of the running time due to several perspectives being followed.
During the confrontation between Galadriel, Saruman, Elrond, Radagast, and Gandalf in Dol Guldur, Galadriel fights Sauron using Earendil's Light. In The Lord of the Rings trilogy, she gives it to Frodo in Lothlorien.
Lee Pace's parents visited him on-set, and subsequently Peter Jackson offered them to be extras in the movie. They were given roles as Lake Town villagers, and filmed a scene with Ian McKellen. However, according to Pace, they were cut out of the movie, because his father was "hamming it up" during his scene.
In the theatrical version, Bombur does not get to say a single word, but he does get to blow a horn. [He does, however, have one line in the Extended Edition (hands Bifur the axe that had been dislodged from his head) "Here you go cousin."]
Legolas is not in the book, however, the book stated that all of the Woodland Elves were present during a battle, and him being an immortal Elf, he is almost certainly likely to have been near his father when the events took place.
Near the end of the movie, when Bilbo gets home to see his things being auctioned off, he takes away spoons from Lobelia Sackville-Baggins. This is a reference to the first hobbit movie, The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey (2012), when Frodo asks Bilbo why he is hiding some of his things. Bilbo tells him it is because once, he'd caught Lobelia trying to take his spoons. In the book, the spoons were never recovered.
Bilbo finds a handkerchief back at his Bag End home. In The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey (2012), he had forgotten his handkerchief as he hurried out of his home to catch up with the Dwarves, at the beginning of the adventure.
Smaug the Dragon made a guest appearance, and was interviewed by Stephen Colbert on The Colbert Report (2005) on December 11, 2014, to promote this movie. Benedict Cumberbatch, who voiced the dragon in the trilogy, also provided the voice of Smaug for the interview.
Balin the elder Dwarf, who is in all three of The Hobbit movies, is mentioned in The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring (2001). The Fellowship discovers his tomb in the Mines Of Moria, and Gandalf reads from it: ("Here lies Balin, Son of Fundin, Lord of Moria")
Peter Jackson confirmed that principal photography on the movies had finished after two hundred sixty-six days, the same amount of days as The Lord of the Rings trilogy. Jackson has described this accomplishment as having done a once in a lifetime experience twice, in a production video.
The story of Thranduil's heirloom, the white gem necklace of Lasgalen showed by Thorin, being stolen by the Dwarves, is not in the book. Thranduil does get the recovered emerald necklace of Girion from Bilbo, after the battle, as thanks for his aid.
When the Hobbit film franchise was in early development under then-director Guillermo del Toro, it was originally going to adapt the book as a single movie, to be followed by a "bridge movie" set between it and The Lord of the Rings. Then the project was altered to be a two-movie arc, with the first movie subtitled as The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey (2012) and the second movie subtitled "There and Back Again". When the decision was made in July 2012 to extend the franchise to three movies, this second subtitle was still kept for the final movie, while the second movie became The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug (2013). However, in April 2014, Peter Jackson announced that the third movie's subtitle had been changed to "The Battle of the Five Armies". The primary reasons for the change, were that the title battle is the central focus of the movie, but also, as Jackson stated on his Facebook page, "'There and Back Again' felt like the right name for the second of a two film telling of the quest to reclaim Erebor, when Bilbo's arrival there, and departure, were both contained within the second film. But with three movies, it suddenly felt misplaced. After all, Bilbo has already arrived 'there' in the Desolation of Smaug."
The three songs from The Hobbit trilogy ("Song Of The Lonely Mountain", "I See Fire" and "The Last Goodbye") have been performed by men: Neil Finn, Ed Sheeran, and Billy Boyd, respectively. In the opposite way, the three songs from The Lord of the Rings' trilogy ("May It Be", "Gollum's Song" and "Into the West") have been performed by women: Enya, Emiliana Torrini, and Annie Lennox.
In the book, Thorin doesn't get his sword Orcrist back until after he dies, and it's buried with him. In the movie, Legolas gives it back to Thorin by throwing it at an Orc, who is about to strike the Dwarf. Thorin then uses Orcrist to kill Azog.
Peter Jackson claimed that the nonverbal scene of Gandalf sitting next to Bilbo and fumbling with his pipe was Sir Ian McKellen's last day during production. Jackson became overwhelmed with sentiment that he was filming McKellen's swan song as Gandalf, and made the decision to disregard the scripted dialogue for the scene.
Peter Jackson met Evangeline Lilly after he finished filming The Lord of the Rings trilogy, and liked her so much that he promised to include her in J.R.R. Tolkien's other stories, should they be made into film. When they started filming The Hobbit, Lilly received a phone call from Jackson, that he created the character of Tauriel for her.
Though the movie revolves around the thirteen Dwarves, there is less screentime devoted to Thorin's company in the theatrical version, compared to the previous movies. However, Peter Jackson claims the Extended Version added thirty minutes of film, thus making it the longest addition in the franchise.
At the epilogue of the movie, the aging Bilbo is sitting down looking at the One Ring. When Gandalf knocks his door, he stands up to open it, keeping the ring inside the right pocket of his vest. This establishes a straight connection with the beginning of The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring (2001), when Bilbo, talking with Gandalf in the kitchen, introduces his hand in the same pocket, in order to touch the One Ring.
For the scenes where Galadriel picks up Gandalf, a dummy of Sir Ian McKellen was used. This dummy was called Michael Gambon (it was even included with that name on call sheets (as seen in the appendices documentary)) because Gambon and McKellen sometimes get mistaken for one another.
When Tauriel and Legolas arrive in Gundabad, and she questions him about what is beyond the fortress, he answers: "An ancient enemy". This enemy is the Witch-King of Angmar, leader of the Nazgul. Angmar was the kingdom that existed beyond Gundabad. The word means "house of iron".
Reports of studio interference were confirmed by Peter Jackson, Graham McTavish, and Evangeline Lilly, with McTavish confirming the theatrical cut for this movie isn't what Jackson intended, and that the extended cuts of all three movies are closer to Jackson's original vision. Amongst other things, the studio demanded more emphasis on the love story.
This is the only Middle-earth movie to have any profanity at all, unsurprisingly spoken by Billy Connolly's character, Dain Ironfoot. Dain yells for all the non-Dwarf soldiers outside the gate of Erebor to "SOD OFF!!!", a common British insult.
Azog's primary goals throughout the trilogy are to kill Thorin and end the bloodline of Durin. If Daín II Ironfoot and Thorin's sister, Dís, were technically not Durin's bloodline, then Azog would've succeeded.
Peter Jackson had previously stated this will be his last movie he would do with J.R.R. Tolkien's Middle-earth properties, but recently said he would consider returning to it, due to his emotional attachment.
Bard asks a woman in Dale if she has seen his children. She replies by saying they are on the market in Stone Street. Stone Street is the name of the studio in Wellington, New Zealand where large portions of the movie were shot.
At the end of the movie, when Gandalf knocks on Bilbo's door, the dialogue between Bilbo and Gandalf "No thank you! We don't want any more visitors, well-wishers or distant relations!" seem to be the audio recordings taken straight from The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring (2001).
The five armies in the movie, are the Dwarves, the Elves, the men of Lake Town, the Orc army from Dol Guldur led by Azog, and the Orc army from Gundabad led by Bolg. In the book, the Five Armies are the Elves, the Men of Lake Town, the Dwarves, the Eagles, and the Orcs.
When Galadriel is in Dol Guldur, she wears Nenya, her ring of power, on the right hand. Nenya, also named the White Ring, the Ring of Adamant, and the Ring of Water, is a word in Sindarin that means "water".
This is the first Middle-earth movie in the franchise in which the Extended Edition received an R rating by the MPAA. It is also the first Extended Edition with the second least amount of new footage (twenty minutes). The movie with the least amount of new footage is The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey (2012) (thirteen minutes).
Despite being one of the main antagonists in the second movie, and featured in the cliffhanger, Smaug barely appears in the final trailer, nor does he appear much at all in the final movie, save the first eleven minutes, and a fleeting shot later on.
At the beginning of the end credits, all of the characters from the three movies are presented with Alan Lee's illustrations, in the same style as the credits of The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King (2003). When the main credits begin, there can be seen a chronological review of The Hobbit trilogy with the landscapes, creatures, and several scenes from the three movies.
Sir Christopher Lee reappears as Saruman, and it is his final time in the role. This movie takes place sixty years prior to The Lord of the Rings trilogy. The role of Saruman the White is similar to Sir Christopher Lee's role in the Star Wars prequels. Count Dooku, a former Jedi Knight, who turned to the Dark Side, and became apprentice to the evil Sith Lord Darth Sidious.
There are three Sherlock Holmes in this movie: Benedict Cumberbatch played Holmes in Sherlock (2010), Sir Christopher Lee was Holmes in three movies (he also played Mycroft Holmes and Sir Henry Baskerville), and Sir Ian McKellen played the retired detective in Mr. Holmes (2015). Martin Freeman, of course, is Watson in Sherlock (2010), and Stephen Fry was Mycroft in Guy Ritchie's Sherlock Holmes movies.
The runestone that Kili gives Tauriel is the same one he showed to her in The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug (2013), a gift from his mother with the word "inikhde", which means "Return to me", in Khuzdul, the Dwarvish language.
During Bard's speech to the people of Lake Town, after they reach dry land, the fourth wall of cinema is broken by a Siberian Husky, as it looks directly at the camera during a widescreen shot, though it is highly unlikely the Husky's gaze was intentional.
Bilbo uses the One Ring to make himself invisible a total of six times throughout the trilogy: -1st - to escape Gollum in the Goblins' caves. -2nd - to escape the spiders. -3rd - to help Thorin and the rest of the Company to escape from Thranduil's cells. -4th - to hide from Smaug's sight after his awakening. -5th - to avoid being eaten by Smaug, running from Smaug's fire breath. -6th - to travel from Dale to Ravenhill, to tell Thorin about Azog's trap.
Only entry in the franchise, to feature two female characters among the promotional materials for the movie. However, Éowyn and Arwen appear together on the main posters and DVD cover for The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers (2002).
This movie's post-production officially concluded November 15, 2014. On November 17 , 2014, one month before the release in theaters, Peter Jackson showed the cinematic version of the movie to an exclusive projection at the "Weta Studios" in Wellington, New Zealand, only for the "Hobbit Contest international members" who had visited New Zealand, and the locations where the two trilogies were filmed (The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit), after having won "The Hobbit: The Fellowship Contest". An international contest for all Tolkien's fans around the world, organized by Peter Jackson with the collaboration of: Air New Zealand, Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, New Line Cinema, Warner Brothers, and WingNut Films. The contest officially started the first week in September 2014, and was concluded in the first weeks in October 2014.
In Fast & Furious 6 (2013), Luke Evans' character (Owen Shaw) blames another character's flaws on loyalty, claiming that he is "loyal to a fault". Here, Bard is present when Bilbo Baggins claims that the Dwarves are "loyal to a fault".
In Bard's speech to the people of Lake Town, he says "the winter is upon us". This quote is similar to the trademark and tagline of the television series Game of Thrones (2011). The Lord of the Rings trilogy actor, Sean Bean, had a major role in the series' first season.
In the beginning of The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring (2001), Gandalf tells Frodo that he was barely involved. While true, Sir Ian McKellen still holds top billing for in all three movies Gandalf is hardly involved in.
Both actors who portrayed Bilbo, each appeared in movies involving interstellar travel. Sir Ian Holm played Ash in Alien (1979), while Martin Freeman played Arthur Dent in The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy (2005).
Bruno Du Bois: A resident in Lake Town moving a wheelbarrow before Smaug's attack. Du Bois' scenes were not included in the theatrical version or the Extended Edition, but were shown in the appendices.
Jamie Haugh: A somber villager, who appeared after the destruction of Lake Town, and after the battle, mourning the dead. Haugh during the scenes with the villagers angry with Alfrid had appeared in every single shot taken for the scene.
The trivia items below may give away important plot points.
Towards the end of the movie, Thranduil instructs his son Legolas to go find the Ranger Strider (Aragorn in The Lord of the Rings). Aragorn would have been roughly twenty-seven years old at this time, according to the timeline of the Middle-earth movies. However, there's a slight discrepancy between the timelines of the movies and the novels. In truth, The Hobbit occurs in the Third Age in 2941-2942. Aragorn was born in the Third Age in 2931, making him between ten and eleven years old at the end of the Battle of the Five Armies, and unlikely to be a Ranger. But in The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey (2012), the old Bilbo begins describing events that occurred sixty years prior to The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring (2001), which begins in the Third Age in 3018, when Aragorn is eighty-seven years old.
In the novel, Fili and Kili died to protect Thorin Oakenshield. In the movie, they die for different reasons: Fili is murdered in battle by Azog, and Kili is killed trying to save Tauriel, while Thorin is actually trying to protect them.
During the confrontation in Dol Guldur between Galadriel, Saruman, Elrond, Radagast, and Gandalf against Sauron, the latter is helped by the Nazgûl. It's the first time that they reveal their true appearance, embodied in their trademark armor.
In the novel, the Master of Lake Town is given a fair share of the Erebor treasure at the end, but consumed by greed, he makes a getaway with whatever gold he can carry. He later dies of starvation in a wasteland. Since the Master gets killed early in the movie, Alfrid was given a similar fate in the extended edition where his greed ultimately kills him.
In the theatrical release, Alfrid escapes with some of the gold that the Master of Lake Town was trying to steal. However, in the Extended Edition, Alfrid is killed when he falls onto a catapult as it is fired, and he becomes stuck in the throat of a troll.
In the book, Bolg is killed by Beorn during the Battle Of The Five Armies. In the movie, he is killed by Legolas, outside of the main battle. Bolg's father Azog is killed by Thorin in the movie, also away from the battlefield; in the book, Azog has already been killed 143 years earlier, by Thorin's cousin Dain during the Battle outside the Gates of Moria. The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey (2012) briefly showed this battle, but the movie adaptation kept Azog alive to be the returning villain throughout the Hobbit trilogy.
When Dain questions where is Thorin during the battle of the five armies, at the right of the screen can be seen a giant white Orc. This is the same Orc that later tries to kill Legolas in Ravenhill, looking to destroy the tower, upon which Legolas stands.
As seen in the behind the scenes footage of the Extended Edition, the last shot filmed, is that of Kíli watching his just killed brother Fíli fall down on Ravenhill, which was shot by the Second Unit. The first main unit just finished filming Thorin fighting Azog on the ice plate beforehand.