New Line, Warner Bros and MGM (going to be one long credits scroll) have just announced the details on Peter Jackson’s two-film adaptation of J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Hobbit.

The first film will be titled The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey and be released on December 14th, 2012. The Hobbit: There and Back Again will hit theaters on December 13th, 2013. They really do love that holiday time slot.

The titles are fairly interesting- There and Back Again is the subtitle of the actual book, while An Unexpected Party is the chapter that kicks off the first book, as poor Bilbo has to deal with thirteen Dwarves coming over for tea and throwing his life into disarray.

As you probably know, a lot of actors will be reprising their old roles in this film- Ian McKellen as Gandalf, Cate Blanchett as Galadriel, Orlando Bloom as Legolas (even though he wasn’t in the book!), Christopher Lee as Saruman, Hugo Weaving as Elrond, Elijah Wood as Frodo, Andy Serkis as Gollum (he’s going to be so great), and even Ian Holm as the old Bilbo.

Bilbo is of course the main character in this prequel story, and you’ll learn all about how he met Gandalf, acquired Sting and, of course, tricked Gollum into giving him his fancy ring. Martin Freeman will star.

On a personal note, check out this beautiful 50th Anniversary edition of the book that my father read to me as a kid. I’m going to have to bug him to borrow it again soon so I can refresh myself on the story. Next year is going to be the 75th Anniversary so I’m sure we’ll see some new print editions hitting stores in time for the movie.