Most moviegoers know J.R.R. Tolkien's literary works from director Peter Jackson's The Lord of the Rings films, starring Elijah Wood as Frodo, a hobbit who has to destroy a golden ring before evil can claim its power. True Tolkien fans know that before Frodo's adventure came Bilbo Baggins' story as told in the fantasy author’s 1937 children’s book, The Hobbit.
With that seminal work published on September 21, and Bilbo and Frodo’s fictional birthdays on September 22 (known as Hobbit Day), fantasy fans across the globe are honoring the English author this week. Tolkien Week has been in observance since the American Tolkien Society proclaimed it so in 1978.
It’s undoubtedly the films though that have put this author and his contributions to literature in the minds of millions. This December, the Academy Award-winning director is set to bring Tolkien’s prequel to The Lord of the Rings to theaters worldwide.
The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, the first installment in this new trilogy, follows the adventurous expedition Bilbo makes with 13 dwarves, including their proud leader Thorin Oakenshield, to retrieve a lost treasure. Tolkien’s story, as always, goes deeper than mere fantasy. As the one who introduced The Chronicles of Narnia writer and Christian apologist C.S. Lewis to a relationship with God, it is clear Tolkien's faith permeated his life and work.
“Living by faith includes the call to something greater than cowardly self-preservation.” – J.R.R. Tolkien
This is true for Bilbo’s fictional tale and life itself. Look inside the Tolkien’s work and you will see evil’s intention, greed’s reach and faith’s overcoming power.
In celebration of Hobbit Day and Tolkien Week, Jackson released this brand new trailer for The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey. (Caution is advised as evil fantasy creatures, such as trolls and goblins—as described in Tolkien’s books, are shown in this preview).