New 'Hobbit' Trailer Goes Big on Action and Doom

'The Battle of the Five Armies' trailer packs in peeks at the final film's big set pieces and giant war-bred bats

The end of an epic saga deserves an epic send-off, and the new trailer for The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies does not skimp on the big moments. With Smaug razing Lake-town and Sauron returning to Middle-Earth, everyone from Bilbo Baggins, Thorin Oakenshield and the Dwarves of Erebor to Gandalf have their work seriously cut out for them.

Though the trailer carries a heavy, foreboding tone, it's packed with snippets teasing all the action to come: Armies assembling and unleashing a torrent of arrows, cities burning to a crisp, Dwarves squaring off with axe-wielding Orcs, Gandalf delivering inspirational one-liners ("You have but one question to ask yourselves: How shall this day end?!"), and Bilbo dramatically putting on the ring. There are also bats that, as Legolas explains, are bred for one thing only: War.

The final installment in Peter Jackson's Middle-Earth saga opens in theaters on December 17th. The director and members of the cast teased The Battle of Five Armies at Comic-Con in July during a panel moderated by Lord of the Rings superfan, Stephen Colbert (who came dressed as the Lake-town Spy, his memorable, landmark cameo from The Desolation of Smaug).

While Colbert stole the show with a hilarious, heartwarming speech about his relationship with J.R.R. Tolkein's books and Jackson's film adaptations, the director and cast were able to tease the film a bit without giving too much away. "I lose my shit… Elven shit," Cate Blanchett said when asked if Galadriel would finally see some battlefield action. Jackson added, "She gets to kick Sauron's ass a little in this next film."