British actor Martin Freeman will star as Bilbo Baggins in Peter Jackson's two-part adaptation of The Hobbit, according to The Hollywood Reporter.
The Hobbit finally gets the green-light
Freeman, who starred on the U.K. version of The Office, is "exactly like Bilbo and I feel incredibly proud to be able to announce that he is our Hobbit," Jackson said in a statement.
Joining Freeman in the project are Richard Armitage, Aidan Turner, Rob Kazinsky, Graham McTavish, John Callen, Stephen Hunter, Mark Hadlow and Peter Hambleton — all of whom will play roles as part of the Company of Dwarves. Armitage, who stars on the U.K. series MI-5 and will appear in Captain America: The First Avenger, will play Thorin Oakenshield, the leader of the Company of Dwarves.
Lord of the Rings stars Ian McKellen and Andy Serkis are expected to return as Gandalf and Gollum, respectively.
Guillermo del Toro drops out of The Hobbit
After a long delay due to financing and labor disputes, The Hobbit was green-lit last week. Jackson, who helmed the Lord of the Rings trilogy, will also serve as writer and producer. Filming is scheduled to begin in February.