Peter Jackson is investigating the option of turning his hyped Hobbit double feature into a trilogy.
In an interview with HitFix during his weekend appearance at Comic Con, the Kiwi director said he wanted to film extra Hobbit scenes next year that weren't originally included in the first two films.
The option of splitting the second Hobbit film - The Hobbit: There and Back Again, due for release on December 14 next year - into two had been raised.
"That's a discussion we're having, yeah," Jackson told HitFix.
"We have certainly been talking to the studio about some of the material we can't film, and we've been asking them so we can do a bit more filming next year.
"Which, I don't know what would come of that, whether it'd be extended editions or whatnot. But those discussions are ongoing."
Jackson said JRR Tolkein's books, which The Hobbit and Jackson's previous Lord of the Rings trilogy were based on, contained plenty of supplementary material that he'd like to include in the Hobbit films.
"I'd like to shoot a bunch more material that we [couldn't] shoot. There's so much good stuff in the appendices that we haven't been able to squeeze into these movies."
The topic resurfaced during Comic Con's Hobbit press conference, reported Screenrant, where Jackson said talk of a trilogy was "very premature".
"I mean we have an incredible source material with the appendices because The Hobbit is obviously a novel but we also have the rights to use this 125 pages of additional notes ...
"Fran and I have been talking to the studio about other things we haven't been able to shoot and seeing if we could persuade them to do a few more weeks of shooting. Probably more than a few weeks actually, next year, and what form that would actually end up taking.
"The discussions are pretty early. So there isn't really anything to report but there's other parts of the story that we'd like to tell that we haven't been able to tell yet."
Jackson announced he had finished shooting the films on July 6 with this Facebook post: "We made it. Shoot day 266 and the end of principal photography on The Hobbit."
He showed fans 12 minutes of material at Comic Con, including a chillingly comic exchange between Bilbo and Gollum, a tender moment between McKellen's Gandalf and Cate Blanchett, reprising her role as elf queen Galadriel, and the pivotal moment when Bilbo discovers the ring.
Jackson shot The Hobbit in 3D and at 48 frames a second, twice the speed that has been the standard since the 1920s. The higher frame rate allows for greater visual clarity, though it requires costly upgrades to digital projectors for cinemas showing films at that speed.
Jackson's first film, The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, is due for release on December 14, with the world premiere being held in Wellington on November 28.
- Herald online with AP