Back in May 2020, the actor for Gollum in the Lord of the Rings trilogy Andy Serkis did a 12-hour reading marathon where he read the entirety of J.R.R Tolkien’s The Hobbit.
Now it’s been announced that book company Harper Collins will be working together with Serkis to record a new audiobook for The Hobbit.
For the new audiobook, Serkis will be donating his fee for the audiobook to the Disasters Emergency Committee, a charity organisation designed to aid countries stricken by major disasters, with Harper Collins UK matching Serkis’ donation with its own.
“I have such vivid memories of first reading The Hobbit, when I was on the bus going to school, aged about nine or 10,” said Serkis in an interview with The Book Seller. “It was the first ‘grown up’ book I remember reading, and I’d often miss my stop because I was so engaged in the thrust and power of its storytelling, the beautifully drawn characters, the majesty of the epic journey.”
“After having performed it all in one take for the Hobbitathon, and with experience freshly under my belt, HarperCollins and I talked about the idea of creating an audiobook version, one that would encapsulate the spirit of the Hobbitathon, except this time I would have the opportunity to refine the performance over four days in the studio.”
The new audiobook is slated to release on 3 September from digital audiobook retailers and will be released as a physical CD on 17 September.