Usually when a movie begins shooting casting is pretty much done, but as The Hobbit production involves shooting two movies over the course of a year or so director Peter Jackson is still in the process of hiring actors. The latest member to join the cast is British actor Luke Evans, who Deadline says will play Bard the Bowman, a skilled archer and the heir of King Girion of Dale. Bard will play a larger role in the second film, hence the later casting.
Evans has been on the short list for leading roles in The Bourne Legacy and The Great Gatsby over recent months, but lost out to more well known actors. The actor has been seen in Clash of the Titans and Robin Hood, and has Immortals and The Three Musketeers coming out later this year.
The first film, titled The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, will be released on December 14, 2012 and the second film, titled The Hobbit: There and Back Again, is slated for release the following year on December 13, 2013.
The Hobbit follows the journey of title character Bilbo Baggins (Martin Freeman), who is swept into an epic quest to reclaim the lost Dwarf Kingdom of Erebor, which was long ago conquered by the dragon Smaug. Approached out of the blue by the wizard Gandalf the Grey (Ian McKellen), Bilbo finds himself joining a company of thirteen dwarves led by the legendary warrior, Thorin Oakensheild (Richard Armitage). Their journey will take them into the Wild; through treacherous lands swarming with Goblins and Orcs, deadly Wargs and Giant Spiders, Shapeshifters and Sorcerers.