Trailer for Peter Jackson's The Hobbit Hits the Web

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Lord of the Rings fans collectively nerdgasmed on Dec. 20, when the first trailer was released for The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey.

The film is the first of a two-part series, and features Martin Freeman as Bilbo Baggins, Ian McKellen as Gandalf the Grey, and Peter Jackson again in the director’s seat.

The Hobbit looks to be just as impressive as its sequels, with Jackson utilizing all the latest technology to create stunning imagery on location in New Zealand. The film was shot in 3D, with a 270 degree shutter, at 48 frames per second.

Unfortunately, the trailer does not reveal any images of Smaug, the giant evil dragon that is the main antagonist in the story, nor does it show Beorn, the bear-man. It does show Thorin and his band of 12 dwarves, Bilbo’s main accomplices on the epic journey; and of course, the creature Gollum, whose ring Bilbo stumbles upon.

The bad news: You have to wait until December 2012 to watch the film in full.