Andy Serkis, best known as the wee creature Gollum from The Lord of the Rings trilogy must have made a real impression on Peter Jackson beyond just his ability to slink around in a green suit covered in golf balls, because he’s asked him to be the second unit director on his two new Hobbit movies. Jackson must want a family atmosphere on his set, because he’s inviting more LOTR crew members to join the fold. Serkis told the Hollywood Reporter:
“I think I understand Peter’s sensibility and we have a common history of understanding Middle Earth. A lot of the crew from The Lord of the Rings was returning to work on The Hobbit. There is really a sense of Peter wanting people around him who totally understand the material and the work ethic.”
Serkis also mentioned that performance capture will not be his only job responsibility on the second unit.
“It is wide ranging and encompasses a lot of directing aspects of filmmaking and story. Yes, there is some performance capture, but I will be very much on the live action sets and locations helping Peter to tell the story.”
When he finishes work on the Hobbit films, Serkis plans on directing his first live action feature and opening a performance capture training facility and studio called The Imaginarium. No word on whether Dr. Parnassus will take legal action over the name. (Hollywood Reporter)