Hell freezing over, pigs flying, Angels winning the pennant– pick whatever metaphor for shit that ain’t likely to happen you prefer and apply it here: The Sun may have gotten a bit of casting news correct! No, Eddie Murphy hasn’t been announced as The Riddler in Batman 3- instead, their story from yesterday, that original Office star and Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy lead Martin Freeman is in talks to play Bilbo Baggins, may very well be on the money.

Entertainment Weekly is reporting today that not only was The Sun correct in surmising that Freeman was a top choice, but that the production is still actively negotiating a scheduling arrangement that would allow the actor to handle The Hobbit without interfering with his shoots for UK television’s Sherlock (he plays Watson). This is much more optimistic than The Sun‘s assertion that the casting ship had sailed. Naturally this is all contingent on MGM’s shit being gotten together (and it seems Spyglass will be the one to do so).

Martin Freeman, as Tim (who becomes John Krasinski’s Jim Halpert in the US version) always provided the warmer, saner center of the UK Office. Of course, even Freeman’s charm is like a 5 pound anchor fighting against Hurricane-level winds of awkward delusion and caustic self-loathing though, which is a large part of the reason I can only take that show in small doses. Freeman was also among the many paradoxically excellent casting choices in the bizarrely un-excellent Hitchhiker’s Guide. I think he’d be a fine choice to play Bilbo Baggins, but my investment in The Hobbit is minimal… I’d be very interested to hear your take on the possible casting choice on the CHUD Message Boards