Although Peter Jackson's "Hobbit" trilogy grossed nearly $3 billion worldwide, it never received the level of acclaim that "The Lord of the Rings" did. In fact, many fans and critics view the films as a bloated mess.
Now, in a surprisingly frank behind-the-scenes video for "The Hobbit: The Battle of Five Armies," the director acknowledges he was "making it up as I went along," shooting some scenes without scripts or storyboards.
In the Blu-ray featurette, Jackson explains that when Guillermo del Toro left the project, the studio didn't turn back the clock on production, leaving him with half the time he required to prepare. “It was impossible," he said, "and as a result of it being impossible I just started shooting the movie with most of it not prepped at all."
“You’re going on to a set and you’re winging it, you’ve got these massively complicated scenes, no storyboards and you’re making it up there and then on the spot […] I spent most of 'The Hobbit' feeling like I was not on top of it," Jackson revealed.
That chaos is what led the release date of "The Battle of Five Armies" to be moved twice, with production finally brought to a halt as the director tried to figure out the climactic battle of the title: “We had allowed two months of shooting for that in 2012, and at some point when we were approaching that I went to our producers and the studio and said: ‘Because I don’t know what the hell I’m doing now, because I haven’t got storyboards and prep, why don’t we just finish earlier?' And so what that delay gives you is time for the director to clear his head and have some quiet time for inspiration to come about the battle, and start to really put something together.”
(via The Guardian)