Are The Hobbit And The Lord Of The Rings Connected And How? 

Are The Hobbit And The Lord Of The Rings Connected And How

Are The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings movie series connected? – the question many viewers ask themselves. 

The fact is they are connected in many ways and here we’ll try to explain the main connections and similarities so stick with us till the end of the article… it just might be an unexpected journey (no pun intended). 

Both movie series (The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit) are set in the same world, Middle-earth. 

However The Hobbit series takes place sixty years before The Lord of the Rings which means that The Hobbit is a prequel to The Lord of the Rings.

Why Did They Film The Lord Of The Rings Before The Hobbit?

You’re probably asking yourself why they filmed The Lord of the Rings series first if The Hobbit is a prequel. Is this some new Hollywood thing? Or maybe it’s the new ‘popular’? Or is it because Star Wars were filmed in such mixed order and they were huge successes so why not use the same formula? 

Well the answer to that is quite simple. 

As most of you already know, The Lord of the Rings is a film series based on the novel written by J. R. R. Tolkien. The first movie in the series “The Fellowship of the Ring” was released in 2001. After that came “The Two Towers” in 2002 and it was followed by “The Return of the King” in 2003.

The Hobbit is also based on the novel by J. R. R. Tolkien; however The Hobbit movie series came years later – almost a decade later to be more precise. The first movie in the trilogy was “An Unexpected Journey” and it was released in 2012, followed by “The Desolation of Smaug” in 2013 and finally “The Battle of the Five Armies” in 2014. 

So both movie series were based on the novels by J. R. R. Tolkien but since The Lord of the Rings was a much more popular book with a wider audience it was only logical for filmmakers to film in the order as they did.

Bilbo Baggins And Other Characters In Both Films

Are The Hobbit And The Lord Of The Rings Connected And How

The Hobbit revolves around the adventures of the hobbit named Bilbo Baggins and he is also seen in the Lord of the Rings, although much older. Although elf Legolas, who was played by Orlando Bloom, was not in Tolkien’s original novel (The Hobbit), he was featured in Peter Jackson’s The Hobbit films, and was also an important member in The Lord of the Rings trilogy.

Besides Bilbo and Legolas there are some other characters that appear in both trilogies like Frodo Baggins, Gandalf, Gollum plus several others. 

Of course, other than the same universe and the same characters the ring is the most important thing that binds both of the trilogies. The Hobbit (the novel) tells the story of how Bilbo Baggins finds the ring of the Dark Lord. Originally, the ring meant nothing special since it was just a magic ring. It was only after Tolkien’s publisher asked him for a sequel that J. R. R. gave much more significance to the ring and wrote The Lord of the Rings novel.

The Hobbit was more oriented to a younger audience than The Lord of the Rings which was oriented for a much wider audience.

Best Way (Order) To Watch The Lord Of The Rings And The Hobbit

If you’re one of the few who still haven’t seen LOTR or The Hobbit, you’re probably wondering in which order you should watch these series. Should you first watch The Lord of the Rings since it was first released or should you first watch The Hobbit?

We know it might be confusing but don’t worry. Whatever you decide you won’t make a mistake.

If you wish to watch in chronological order then you should watch them in this order: 

–     The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey (2012)

–     The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug (2013)

–     The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies (2014)

–     The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring (2001)

–     The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers (2002)

–     The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King (2003)

However, you won’t make a mistake if you watch The Lord of the Rings series before The Hobbit. Bear in mind that most people watched it before The Hobbit since it was released nine years prior.

The Lord of the Rings does have some minor spoilers if you watch it first, which is expected since both series are connected and it is basically a sequel.

Which Is Better – The Lord Of The Rings Or The Hobbit?

Are The Hobbit And The Lord Of The Rings Connected And How

Of course, this is very subjective question since you might like The Lord of the Rings better than The Hobbit and the person next to you might like The Hobbit better.

But the fact is that The Lord of the Rings was way more accepted by the audience and movie critics. Although The Hobbit cleaned at the box office as well it left many fans with a bitter taste after watching it (compared to The Lord of the Rings).

If you start with The Hobbit and then The Lord of the Rings (chronologically) you might find that the movie plot just keeps getting better and better.

Was The Hobbit Too Long?

As we already mentioned both trilogies were based on the novel by J. R. R. Tolkien but there is one huge difference.

The Lord of the Rings novel consists of three volumes (books) each with the same name as the movies (The Fellowship of the Ring, The Two Towers, and The Return of the King) while The Hobbit novel is just one book.

Splitting one book into three movies might seem illogical from a viewers point of view but you have to remember that The Lord of The Rings movies were huge successes that grossed almost $3 billion worldwide so of course it was expected for The Hobbit to have a similar success. And it did, at least financially.

Also the moviemakers knew that people who watched the first part of The Hobbit usually already watched The Lord of the Rings series and were not to miss two other parts of the series.

So yes, The Hobbit could have been a little shorter and maybe “compressed” into two movies. If it was just one three-hour movie it would be too short in our opinion, and for one movie to last more than three hours is also not a good idea which is why we think that two movie series for The Hobbit would be ideal.