The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug is a 2013 epic high fantasy adventure film directed by Peter Jackson and produced by WingNut Films in collaboration with New Line Cinema and Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer. It was distributed by Warner Bros. Pictures and is the second installment in the three-part film series based on the novel The Hobbit by J. R. R. Tolkien. The film was preceded by An Unexpected Journey (2012) and followed by The Battle of the Five Armies (2014); together they operate as a prequel to Jackson's The Lord of the Rings film trilogy.
The film follows the titular character Bilbo Baggins as he accompanies Thorin Oakenshield and his fellow dwarves on a quest to reclaim the Lonely Mountain from the dragon Smaug. The film also features the vengeful pursuit of Azog the Defiler and Bolg, while Gandalf the Grey investigates a growing evil in the ruins of Dol Guldur. The ensemble cast includes Ian McKellen, Martin Freeman, Richard Armitage, Benedict Cumberbatch, Evangeline Lilly, Lee Pace, Luke Evans, Ken Stott, James Nesbitt, and Orlando Bloom.
Fran Walsh, Philippa Boyens, Peter Jackson and Guillermo del Toro wrote the screenplay. The films were shot simultaneously in 3D at a projection rate of 48 frames per second, with principal photography taking place around New Zealand and at Pinewood Studios. Additional filming took place throughout May 2013.
The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug premiered on 2 December 2013 in Los Angeles and was released internationally on 11 December 2013 in both conventional and IMAX theatres. The film received mostly positive reviews and has grossed over $958 million at the worldwide box office, surpassing both The Fellowship of the Ring and The Two Towers, making it the fourth highest-grossing film of 2013 and the 39th highest-grossing film of all time. At the 86th Academy Awards, the film received nominations for Best Visual Effects, Best Sound Editing, and Best Sound Mixing.