‘The Hobbit’ Toppled At The Box Office While Stars Weigh In On Romantic Subplot

The Hobbit: Battle of the Five Armies had a wonderful run at the top of the box office following its December 2014 release, but the juggernaut may have finally reached he end of all things.

For the first time since its release three weeks ago, The Hobbit: Battle of the Five Armies was not the number one film at the domestic box office. Instead, that honor went to Taken 3, the swan song of the popular Liam Neeson series about a man with a particularly violent set of skills which he uses to save and avenge his loved ones. According to Variety Magazine, when the final numbers for the weekend are counted, Taken 3 is expected to have earned around $30 million, very close to its $48 million production budget.

The Hobbit: Battle of the Five Armies didn’t take the number two spot, either. That honor went to Selma, a historical drama focused on the Civil Rights Era marches that led to the Voting Rights Act. In it’s first weekend of wide release, Selma took in an estimated $15 million.

The Hobbit: Battle of the Five Armies is expected to reap a respectable $13 million, putting it in third place. As the Inquisitr previously reported, The Hobbit: Battle of the Five Armies is all but guaranteed to be the final film set in Middle-earth, at least with Peter Jackson at the helm. Jackson’s sweeping versions of J.R.R. Tolkein’s work have consumed nearly 18 years of his life from storyboarding of The Lord of the Rings: Fellowship of the Ring to the release of The Hobbit: Battle of the Five Armies. While both the trilogies have been wildly successful and critically acclaimed, they have also had plenty of detractors.

The most famous of those detractors is Christopher Tolkien, who currently owns the rights to The Lord of the Rings, The Hobbit, and all work done by his father, J.R.R. Tolkien. Christopher Tolkien was not shy about expressing his displeasure with Peter Jackson’s version of his father’s stories, and has refused to sell the rights to the last complete story, The Silmarillion, to Jackson or anyone who may allow Jackson to make a film adaptation of it.

Another of Jackson’s detractors is The Hobbit: Battle of the Five Armies co-star Evangeline Lilly. In an interview for the release of The Hobbit: Desolation of Smaug, Lilly said that she agreed to take on the role of Tauriel only if the creators swore there would be no love triangle. According to Lilly, the creators kept their word through principal photography, but during pick up shots, the love triangle was hastily added.

“And all of a sudden manifested a love triangle before my very eyes and the film was shot, and I’m in and there’s no getting out and there was no escaping it.”