The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug opens in theaters today, marking the end of filmmaker Peter Jackson’s Middle Earth journey that includes The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit trilogies. There are still more J.R.R. Tolkien tales set in Middle Earth, including a number of short stories and The Silmarillion, which offers an in-depth look at the land’s history. However, all of those titles are still controlled by the late author’s estate, which has been opposed to the filmmaker’s adaptations for some time, and have no plans to relinquish the rights to those additional stories. During an in-depth interview with Variety, Peter Jackson revealed he would be interested in exploring those stories, if the rights should become available, but not right away.
“If I had to start tomorrow, I would say no, because I definitely would appreciate a break to clear my head and get my little New Zealand stories done, which is where my passion and my heart is heading now. But ask me in two or three years, and I’d probably say yes. It would be hard to see another filmmaker go into this world, because I certainly have an emotional ownership of it.”