The first thing you notice during this new production diary for "The Hobbit"? The dwarves.

The dwarves are kayaking through the river in a big raft. They're on location, riding horses and brandishing swords and running against green screens. There's a lot to see; twelve minutes of it, to be exact, taking you through the trailers and the production studios and the computer labs where all of the work gets done.


Check out the "Hobbit" trailer!

There's honestly too much to summarize, so you'll have to check it out for yourself. That said, the Shire shows up, as do Elijah Wood (reprising Frodo) and Ian McKellan (reprising Gandalf). Hobbiton's been recreated for the new film, and Wood gives his thoughts on returning to the Tolkien-verse after 11 years away. Andy Serkis (Gollum) also shows up -- as a 2nd Unit Director, if you didn't know about his expanded role.

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In addition to being one of the most anticipated films of the season, "The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo" is also marketing itself somewhat subversively: as the "feel bad movie" of the year, something sure to put a damper on your Christmas morning. With a plot heavy on rape and murder, it's definitely not fun for the whole family.

But "Tattoo" wouldn't be the first inappropriate holiday movie, not by a long shot. For families really upset about the way their annual Yankee Swap turned out, there's a long history of violent and messed up films being released on Christmas weekend. Below, our top five picks for the worst way to spend a Christmas afternoon.

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David Fincher is a busy, busy man. In comparison to his Hollywood contemporaries, it seems like the "Girl with the Dragon Tattoo" director is always working on a new project, whether it's live action or animated. "Dragon Tattoo" comes out today, and the prospect of directing two sequels should keep his scheduled tied up for now.

But when Fincher talked to MTV News, he was more than happy to dish on the progress of some other projects. You might not know, but he's in the process of developing a Disney-sponsored version of "20,000 Leagues Under the Sea," the famous Jules Verne novel. Though the book wasn't important for Fincher while growing up, he was fascinated by the concept.

"The idea of a post-Civil War version of science fiction and the notion of being able to breathe underwater was so radical in its thinking. That's pretty cool," he said. "If you're going to do big tent-pole teenage PG-13 summer movies, it's kind of cool that it would be this."

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Fast Five

Plenty of movies are split into two in order to give the story more room to breathe. "The Hobbit." "Twilight: Breaking Dawn." "Harry Potter & The Deathly Hallows." Why can't the "Fast and Furious" franchise join all the fun?

Vin Diesel, star of the franchise and one of its producers, announced that upon planning the sixth "Fast and Furious" film, the team realized that they would prefer a seventh movie to wrap up every storyline.

"With the success of this last one, and the inclusion of so many characters, and the broadening of scope, when we were sitting down to figure out what would fit into the real estate of number six, we didn’t have enough space," he told The Hollywood Reporter. The sixth and seventh movies will be written simultaneously, though he gave no details on a possible production schedule.

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Hobbit

It's been so, so long since we last saw Middle Earth, almost a decade ago if you can believe it. The world returns in 2012's "The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey," another Tolkien adaptation courtesy of Peter Jackson and a sure bet to make all kinds of money.

Besides casting news and the general plot details, we haven't seen too much from the film. All of that changes tonight when the first trailer drops promptly at 7 P.M. PST. For now, you can get a tease by looking at this production still of Bilbo Baggins alongside his dwarf companions. Martin Freeman's Bilbo looks quite dapper in his rumbled clothing and knapsack, while the dwarves look like dwarves.

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Prometheus

It's been a very long time since Ridley Scott directed a science fiction film -- so long, in fact, that he'll barely tell us what his newest one is about. Half a year away from the release of "Prometheus," we've only been told a handful of details regarding the film: it takes place in space, it's kinda-maybe an "Alien" prequel, and the cast -- including Michael Fassbender, Noomi Rapace, Charlize Theron and Idris Elba -- is loaded.

All that changes on Thursday, when the first "Prometheus" trailer will be released. For now, we can make due with a trailer teaser, courtesy of iTunes.

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Expendables 2

You will be forgiven for not expecting nuance in the promotional material for "The Expendables 2." Despite what the marketing team might think, there doesn't need to be much other than a list of names against a black background, maybe crafted out of bullets or fire or blood.

You know those names -- Stallone, Statham, Li, Willis, Van Damme, and Schwarzenegger, to name a few -- and what the first "Expendables" movie was about. The new one-sheet shows Stallone standing in the frame of a "2" carved out of concrete, lit ablaze against a rocky foreground. Check that out, plus the first "Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter" poster, beyond the jump.

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Jack the Giant Killer

Hollywood loves its remakes, and fairy tales are the easiest money of all. What child or adult in America isn't familiar with the story of Jack and the beanstalk, even if they're not clear on the specifics? Then again, the specifics can be largely invented based on whatever tired parent is telling the story to his kid: there are some beans, a beanstalk, some giants and a guy named Jack who fights them or tries to, at least.

In this regard, "Jack the Giant Killer" looks wholly familiar. The trailer opens with Nicholas Hoult as the titular Jack, palming a fistful of magic beans while a serious man tells him to be careful. Well, you know how it goes: the beans fall in some soil and water, then shoot up up thousands of feet into the sky, carrying Jack's house and the princess of the realm with it.

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By and large, the “Sherlock Holmes" movies are a more-or-less faithful adaptation of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s sharp-eyed sleuth, albeit with some slo-mo bareknuckle boxing thrown in for good measure. There’s Holmes, cracking wise; there’s Watson, looking perturbed. What more do you need? As you can see in this newly released clip, not much.


Watch an exclusive "Sherlock Holmes" clip!

But there’s more to take from Doyle’s original stories than a character sketch and a setting. Doyle’s tales were filled with twists, turns, and unique plots built up and concluded in a handful of pages. No one’s saying the movie studios need to adapt these stories exactly; they’re firmly rooted in the societal attitudes of the time, and would come off a little stilted. Still, there’s plenty of concepts and wrinkles to lift for any future “Sherlock Holmes" movies. Below, here’s five stories we think would do the trick.

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Prometheus

The first two "Alien" movies are sci-fi classics, so it's not surprising that we all wanted Ridley Scott's "Prometheus" to be related in some way. Indeed, it is -- there are "strands of DNA" floating around in the film that'll come out next summer, but not much else.

That seems okay; based on the first official poster, there will be enough mysterious sci-fi goings on without accounting for the dense "Alien" world. Check out that poster (as well as a new "John Carter" poster) after the jump!

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