First pictures of ‘The Hobbit’ appear online

Images show Martin Freeman in full Bilbo Baggins outfit

Three pictures from the set of The Hobbit have arrived online, featuring the return of old favourites Bilbo and Gandalf.

The first picture is the world’s maiden glimpse of Martin Freeman as Bilbo Baggins, with, what looks like, a vast array of dwarves in his hobbit house of Bag End.

Secondly we see Sir Ian McKellen, returning to the role of Gandalf, in full Wizard regalia, pulling on his pipe contemplatively while resting under a tree.

The third image, in the form of an on-set still, shows Freeman taking direction from Peter Jackson. Be sure to check out his massive Hobbit feet under the table.

To see the images head over to, Entertainment Weekly.

The first set of publicity stills mark the start of, what is sure to be, one of the most eagerly awaited productions in cinema history.

The first block of shooting for The Hobbit is now completed.

The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey is due for UK release on December 14 2012, with part two, The Hobbit: There and Back Again due to arrive a year later.