THE HOBBIT: Concept Art Of Smaug, Azog, Beorn, Tauriel & More

Conceptual illustrator, Nick Keller ("Avatar"), has updated his website with concept art that he created for Peter Jackson's The Hobbit: Desolation of Smaug. Hit the jump to check out alternate designs for Smaug, Azog, Beorn, Tauriel and many more.

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By nailbiter111 - 5/17/2014


Concept Art by Nick Keller
 
The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug continues the adventure of the title character Bilbo Baggins as he journeys with the Wizard Gandalf and thirteen Dwarves, led by Thorin Oakenshield, on an epic quest to reclaim the Lonely Mountain and the lost Dwarf Kingdom of Erebor. Having survived the beginning of their unexpected journey, the Company continues East, encountering along the way the skin-changer Beorn and a swarm of giant Spiders in the treacherous forest of Mirkwood. After escaping capture by the dangerous Wood-elves, the Dwarves journey to Lake-town, and finally to the Lonely Mountain itself, where they must face the greatest danger of all - a creature more terrifying than any other; one which will test not only the depth of their courage but the limits of their friendship and the wisdom of the journey itself - the Dragon Smaug. Ian McKellen returns as Gandalf the Grey, with Martin Freeman in the central role of Bilbo Baggins, and Richard Armitage as Thorin Oakenshield. The international ensemble cast is led by Benedict Cumberbatch, Evangeline Lilly, Lee Pace, Luke Evans, Ken Stott, James Nesbitt, and Orlando Bloom as Legolas. The film also stars (in alphabetical order) John Bell, Manu Bennett, Jed Brophy, Adam Brown, John Callen, Ryan Gage, Mark Hadlow, Peter Hambleton, Stephen Hunter, William Kircher, Lawrence Makoare, Sylvester McCoy, Graham McTavish, Dean O'Gorman, Mikael Persbrandt, and Aidan Turner.
Source: Nick Keller
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29 Comments
SuperCat - 5/17/2014, 2:59 PM
This movie is still on my "Must See" list. :(
sansClaymore - 5/17/2014, 3:09 PM
Wow that first Azog is insane! they totally should have went with that instead. i always thought the practical makeup and costumes were better than cg.
SauronsBANE - 5/17/2014, 3:21 PM
Agree, they definitely should've went with either these designs or the original design for Azog:

Tuuralihn - 5/17/2014, 3:21 PM
So they went with the shitty art for the movie then.
TheSoulEater - 5/17/2014, 3:21 PM
I like the less regal look for the wood elves
SauronsBANE - 5/17/2014, 3:22 PM
The ridiculous overuse of CGI really ruined these movies. It's weird too, because Peter Jackson made such an effort to remind people that these Hobbit movies are connected with LOTR, but the aesthetics of The Hobbit is completely different from the original trilogy. There's just no way it's believable that the two trilogies take place in the same universe.
GrayFox1025 - 5/17/2014, 4:04 PM
I like that concept for Beon much more than the final version. That's how I always envisioned him to look.
DeusExSponge - 5/17/2014, 4:23 PM
Wished that was a six limbed dragon instead of a four limbed one. The art work that showed him having six limbs was just jaw dropping! Would have been so much better seeing a six limbed dragon on screen, especially since we already have a large abundance of four limbed dragons.
Facade - 5/17/2014, 4:23 PM
@SauronsBANE1...have you convinced anyone, yet? Yes, they're flawed...yes, they could've followed source...yes, you're a broken record without a life....
Klone - 5/17/2014, 5:13 PM
Oh what evil heresy SauronBANE has committed by not conceding to your exact opinions by not disliking the film!
Facade - 5/17/2014, 5:20 PM
@MetahumanAbominationKlone...it not that all. It just that he says the same thing on every Hobbit article. I said NOTHING about him conforming to my opinion, friend. In some respects I agree with him, but trolling is trolling.
Odin - 5/17/2014, 5:29 PM
Thranduil looks cool.
SauronsBANE - 5/17/2014, 5:34 PM
No offense, Facade, but if you want to shut me up, then prove me wrong. Give me any sort of evidence that I'm completely out of line, that I owe the filmmakers a huge apology, and that any of my criticisms in the past have been dead wrong.

If not, then I don't see the problem here. In this case, I'm not even the one who first brought up the flaws in the movie. I simply agreed with someone else, and added thoughts of my own. Not sure how that's "trolling", especially on a site where you can go to literally any other article and witness actual trolling by users who are there only to insult, instigate, put others down, and discredit others' opinions.

By that definition, I'd say that telling me I have no life simply because reading my comments are too painful for you to read is a form of trolling, friend =)
MightyZeus - 5/17/2014, 5:49 PM
@SauronsBANE1, I rarely agree with you but on the fact that the studio should have went with the actual design of Azgog and that there's too much cgi in the film, i agree. I just think The Hobbit films are so far oversaturated with cgi. I mean yes cgi is needed for some parts of the film but not the entire film where you have to even filter Legolas's face.

The studio has already cluttered the second film by introducing a romance between a dwarf and an elf which there was no point introducing another plot.
If the death's are changed where the dwarfs will not die protecting Thorin then i'll be disappointed.
TrevT2 - 5/17/2014, 5:59 PM
@Sauronsbane1

Man give it a rest, I've seen see you bashing these movies on every Hobbit/LOTR related article i've ever been on. Yeah you dont like them and you dont agree with some of the decisions PJ made, But constantly bashing and complaining about it on every article is just sad. If you hate these movies so much just keep to reading the book and get over it
SauronsBANE - 5/17/2014, 6:11 PM
@ folks like facade and Trev...short answer: sorry, but nope! I'm not going to stop voicing my displeasure and disappointment with these movies simply because users like you two are unable to skip reading a comment or two and go on your merry way. Unless, of course, someone is literally holding a gun to your head and forcing you to read my comments...but in that case, I think you have bigger things to worry about than my comments on The Hobbit.

I comment on articles to start discussions and debates on movies. And look: on this very article thread, someone replied to me who I've never talked to before, someone who raises several great points and, unlike you two, isn't adverse to actually talking about movies, either in a positive light or negative. Isn't that what we're here for? Talking about movies? So on that note...
SauronsBANE - 5/17/2014, 6:12 PM
@MightyZeus, I definitely don't have a problem with CGI, I mean the original trilogy had CGI too. It's just that there is such thing as too much of a good thing, and that's exactly what happened here. Not only does it feel like more of a video game than a cinematic movie, but it got to the extent that it started affecting the actual story itself.

It doesn't feel like the characters, locations, and events are real (except Smaug. That looked incredible), and it robs the movie of the sense of tension and danger that the original trilogy had. If Dwarves can fly through the air, fall down cliffs, block CGI arrows with CGI swords, all with barely a scratch...then what danger is there, even in a room with a gigantic fire-breathing dragon? Where's the stakes? It makes it so much more boring to watch, IMO.

But as for your last point, (SPOILERS for anyone unfamiliar with the books) I'm sure those deaths will take place. That's why so much attention was paid to Kili and the love triangle: it was a lazy, shorthand way to give him more character development so when the inevitable happens, it'll actually feel meaningful. I hated the love triangle, but I at least see why they did that.
SauronsBANE - 5/17/2014, 6:14 PM
Also, I actually just stumbled across an article earlier where an actual cast member from the original LOTR raises concerns about the CGI as well. For anyone interested:

http://screenrant.com/lord-rings-hobbit-viggo-mortensen-criticism-cgi/
Kyos - 5/17/2014, 6:15 PM
So they had concepts for a pretty great looking, pretty accurate Beorn, but then for some reason decided to say "[frick] it" and go with the stupid, nearly unrecognizable version we got... >:(
case - 5/17/2014, 8:44 PM
Nick Keller is a [frick]ing beast.

He did the cover of my mates' band's album. This on vinyl?



So good.
case - 5/17/2014, 8:46 PM
Yay my first picture post!
Off to google boobs to share now I guess...
ISleepNow - 5/17/2014, 8:49 PM
Very nice article NB. I love those Mirkwood Elf designs
pesmerga44 - 5/17/2014, 10:31 PM
@Sauron

Agree with you especially on the point of CGI. Here is one comparison of how CGI is so overused in the Hobbit movies. Every single fight in the Hobbit films are CGI because every fight the dwarves, elves, orc, etc... need to be doing some kind of impossible trick to make the fights "cool". All kinds of nothing more then visual garbage thrown on the screen really compare that to the original LOTR movie Fellowship of the Ring the final battle had well over 100 extras running around in real Uruk-Hai costumes fighting real life Aragorn, Gimli, Legolas, and Boromir.



Look real people fighting it's amazing versus in the Hobbit movie we need CGI character pulling off tricks of the same caliber as Legolas shield surfing in the Two Towers.
MrSundayMovies - 5/17/2014, 11:20 PM
These are incredible!
Ceejay - 5/18/2014, 12:09 AM
@pesmerga44 Fair point to a degree. To be honest they never bettered the balance of chemistry with FX than Fellowship because of the undertaking of what they had and the time schedule to deliver it in. Each film was always going to be more complex than the last but The Hobbit was always going to be a CGI fest, no way around it. Putting men in suits to play Urak-Hai is one thing, even standard orcs but Goblins have to look slightly less human proportions and scamper faster and more agile than a regular human. Aside from making a meal out of Azog and his 2nd's, they've done amazing work with the Goblins in The Hobbit movies.

They've just gone overboard with trying to enrich the plot beyond its childrens book level. Tolkien himself wanted to do exactly what they're doing and expand the Hobbit so it fits in better with LOTR. Unfortunately the publishers wouldn't let him so he had to write a whole load of tales that surround the timeline of the Hobbit. They've adapted the timeline to fit three movies but they've become undisciplined with the amount of extra crap they've made up themselves to bloat the narrative.

I don't think they'll ever beat the quality of that fight at Amon Hem with the Urak-Hai, its was charged with drama and outstanding individual combat sequences that set a ridiculously high standard for any fantasy film before and after. Fellowship of the Ring just got the balance perfectly right!
loki668 - 5/18/2014, 1:46 AM
Actually, not to stoke the flames or anything, Viggo Mortensen recently did an interview where he said that the cgi in these films became overwhelming and that he believes that the big spectacle and cgi concepts have taken Jackson over, to some extent.
ckal - 5/18/2014, 7:05 AM
Viggo speaks the truth
RetroFit - 5/19/2014, 6:45 AM
Peter Jackson's The Hobbit does too much to honour Peter Jackson's Lord of the Rings and not J.R.R. Tolkien's The Hobbit.

That and Azog looked distractingly like Panthro from Thundercats:
sameoldthing - 5/23/2014, 4:58 PM
Keller is a superb artist. He is one of the best.

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