Ian McKellen is back as Gandalf the Grey, along with Martin Freeman as Bilbo Baggins and Richard Armitage as Thorin Oakenshield, leader of the Dwarves. Picking up where The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey left off, the adventure to reclaim the Lonely Mountain and the lost Dwarf Kingdom of Erebor continues. This time, the fearsome dragon Smaug (voiced by Benedict Cumberbatch) provides formidable opposition.
Only 25,000 of the Limited Collector’s Edition Blu-ray 3D Combo Pack will be available in the U.S. The special set, which retails for $105.43, includes two Gates of Erebor replica bookends (from the Noble Collection). Both the Collector’s Edition and Blu-ray 3D Combo Pack (retails cost: $44.95) include the theatrical version of The Desolation of Smaug in 3D hi-definition, 2D hi-definition, and standard edition. The 2D Blu-ray Combo Pack (retail: $35.99) includes the film in hi-definition as well as a Digital HD UltraViolet copy. The two-disc DVD Special Edition (retail: $28.98) includes the film in standard definition as well as the UltraViolet digital copy. Be sure to shop around for pre-sale savings.
Special features found on all Blu-ray and DVD editions of The Desolation of Smaug include the featurettes “Peter Jackson Invites You to the Set: In the Company of the Hobbit” and “Peter Jackson Invites You to the Set: All in a Day’s Work.” There are also production videos that provide an inside look at the making of the film. “New Zealand: Home of Middle-earth, Part 2” is a piece that takes viewers into New Zealand with Peter Jackson and the filmmakers for a chronicle of how Middle-earth was created. A music video for Ed Sheeran’s theme song, “I See Fire,” is included as well.
Digital streaming and download options abound for The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug so fans can watch anywhere in high definition and standard definition on the mobile device of their choice. The Digital HD version will be available from select digital retailers including Amazon, CinemaNow, Flixster, iTunes, PlayStation, Target Ticket, Vudu, Xbox and others. Starting April 8, The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug will be available digitally on Video On Demand services from cable and satellite providers, and on select gaming consoles. See this link for more information on Ultraviolet-compatible devices.