It looks like another of the long-rumored Lord Of The Rings actors has closed the deal on reprising their role in The Hobbit. Deadline reports that Andy Serkis (Gollum) has closed his deal to appear in the films, although confirmation is still pending. I will point out, however that despite rampant reports, Ian McKellan has NOT been confirmed yet (Update: yes he has, finally), nor has Christopher Lee or Ian Holm – although all three are expected. There were recent rumblings of Orlando Bloom returning to play Legolas, but I haven’t heard more on that front.
Speaking of returning characters, TheOneRing.net reports that Frodo will be seen in the opening scenes, likely as part of a narrative where Frodo is reading Bilbo’s “There And Back Again” story, which is pretty much what most expected.