The Hobbit's STILL Not Officially a Go, Guillermo Del Toro Confirms
"You know, there cannot be any start date, really, until the MGM situation gets resolved, because they do hold a considerable portion of the rights. It's impossible to take a unilateral decision by New Line or Warners to give the green light to proceed. We really believe that things will be known after the fact of MGM's fate. Whether they stay and they get supported or they get bought or they transfer some of the rights, nobody knows. We've been caught in a very tangled negotiation.
"Now I've been on the project for nearly two years. We have designed all the creatures, we have designed the sets, the wardrobe. We have done animatics and planned very lengthy action sequences and scary sequences and funny sequences. We are very, very prepared for when it finally is triggered, but we don't know anything until MGM is sold."
Regarding The Hobbit in 3D and that The Hobbit's been green-lighted... "In both counts, there are absolutely no final answers. It's not green-lit. That's categorical. It is not green-lit."
So, there you have it. There's nothing--zero, zilch, nada--that can happen until MGM's troubles are sorted... though it's good to hear that pre-production has been moving along briskly.