(Reuters) - The final instalment of "The Hobbit" film trilogy will be released on December 17, 2014, five months later than planned, Warner Bros. said on Thursday.
"The Hobbit: There and Back Again" had been set to debut in July 2014. It will follow "The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey," which came out in December 2012, and "The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug," is scheduled to be released on December 13, 2013.
"We're excited to complete the trilogy the same way we started it, as a holiday treat for moviegoers everywhere," said Dan Fellman, president of distribution for Warner Bros., a unit of Time Warner Inc.
"The Hobbit" series is a prequel to J.R.R. Tolkien's epic fantasy "The Lord of the Rings," which director Peter Jackson made into three Oscar-winning films about a decade ago.
The first "Hobbit" film was a blockbuster with global sales of $981 million, according to the Box Office Mojo website. The trilogy is financed by Warner Bros. New Line Cinema and MGM.
(This story is corrected in paragraph 2 to show that "The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug" is scheduled to be released on December 13, 2013. It has not been in theaters.)