While rumors swirl whether David Tennant will land a role in Peter Jacksons The Hobbit, one of his predecessors in the classic role of “Doctor Who” already has been cast.
Sylvester McCoy – – who played the title character in the 1987-89 Doctor Who television series – – will play Radagast the Brown in the long-awaited prequel to The Lord of the Rings trilogy. McCoys casting has been rumored for months, but the star himself has now confirmed his involvement.
Radagast, a wizard sent to aid in the quest to destroy Sauron, appears in the Rings novels, but his character did not appear in Peter Jacksons film adaptations. In addition to The Hobbit, he is referenced in The Silmarillion, another novel by J.R.R. Tolkien set in the Rings universe.
McCoy has stayed quite busy since leaving “Doctor Who.” He appeared in the failed 1996 American version of the show, which featured Paul McGann. He later appeared in shows like “The History of Tom Jones, A Foundling” and “Doctors.”
McCoys casting follows the recent announcement that Martin Freeman — best known to American audiences for his role in the big-screen adaptation of A Hitchikers Guide to the Galaxy — will play Bilbo Baggins, the heroic hobbit Ian Holm portrayed in the Rings trilogy.
In addition, Richard Armitage has been cast as lead dwarf Thorin Oakenshield, Aidan Turner and Rob Kazinsky as Kili and Fili, Graham McTavish as Dwalin, John Callen as Oin, Stephen Hunter as Bombur, Mark Hadlow as Dori, and Peter Hambleton as Gloin.
Jackson is set to direct the two-part film, with filming scheduled to begin in February. The first part of The Hobbit is expected to land in theaters in December 2012.