Even back when director Peter Jackson's adaptation of J.R.R. Tolkien's The Hobbit was set to be just a two-part movie, The Hobbit: There and Back Again was always meant to be the finale's title, with New Line Cinema deciding on The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug as the second part of this trilogy that begins with The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey. Today, we have word from TheOneRing.net that the last movie may now be re-titled The Hobbit: Into the Fire.
New Line Cinema has registered this title, although the site's source, dubbed "The Knocking Thrush," claims that studios often register multiple titles while deciding on the final version. New Line previously registered the title The Hobbit: Battle of Five Armies, before it was confirmed in August 2012 that The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug and The Hobbit: There and Back Again would be the final two movies. With that being said, New Line registering a new title, eight months before The Hobbit: There and Back Again's release, has fans speculating if this is actually the new title for the final film, or if it is for some sort of movie tie-in product that hasn't been announced yet. On the other hand, the studio has not released an official trailer or a poster for The Hobbit: There and Back Again yet, so it's possible that the studio is having last-minute thoughts about the title before they release any official promotional material.
Given that The Hobbit: There and Back Again's title has been around since the adaptation's early days, and has so much name recognition already, it would be surprising if the studio simply changed the title so late in the game. The Hobbit: Into the Fire could be a nod to a chapter of J.R.R. Tolkien's novel, Out of the Frying Pan, Into the Fire, but then again, There and Back Again is part of the novel's actual title. Portions of dialogue from the original novel has been reconfigured for the movie in a similar fashion, but The Hobbit: There and Back Again already has a handy acronym that is being used by the fans, TABA. There is also speculation that There and Back Again may be confusing to some viewers, since Bilbo (Martin Freeman) and his company are already "there" at Erebor. At any rate, The Hobbit: Into the Fire would actually be a more proper name for The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug, given Bilbo's fiery ordeal with the dragon Smaug.
New Line and Warner Bros. haven't officially announced a new title for The Hobbit: There and Back Again yet, so we'll have to wait and see what The Hobbit: Into the Fire really means.