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When asked what “The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey” offers that “The Lord of the Rings” trilogy didn’t, actor Sir Ian McKellan pauses before answering.

“It offers enough that is new to please the fans and draw younger audiences … and enough that is similar to please the fans and impress many a cynic.” He then adds a qualifier to this statement, “In years to come, ‘The Hobbit’ may be remembered less as a companion series to ‘The Lord of the Rings’ and more as a technological pioneer.”

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