According to an interview with Peter Jackson on German website MovieReporter.net Peter Jackson has revealed that The Hobbit and its sequel will now start filming mid-summer 2010 instead of March, as previously rumoured.
“We're currently working on the second script which we hope to have completed by the end of this year or beginning of next. When the scripts are completed, we can begin with the exact calculation of the necessary budget. We hope to start filming in the middle of next year. However, we've received no green light from the studio yet.”
The lack of a green light probably has a lot to do with MGM's unclear future – the studio is currently up for sale. But you'd have thought that having two potential prequels to three of the most lucrative films of all time on its books would make MGM an attractive business proposition.