I really hope they work in some of the background story that we know about from ROTK appendix A and B, especially about Gandalf’s doings. I would love to see a sort of intro like in FOTR about how the Watchful Peace began to end as shadow and fear crept back into the world (and especially into Dol Guldur). I can imagine such an intro talking about dragons in the north and how the dwarves were driven from their ancestral homes into exile in the Blue Mountains, but were ever restless and wandering.
Can’t you just see glimpses of the shadows lengthening in Mirkwood, of fire and fleeing at Erebor with just a vauge hint of shadowy dragon wings in the smoke, maybe even a glimpse of Thráin being captured?
The intro could include Gandalf entering Dol Guldur and as the shadows flee before him he finds Thráin rambling something about ‘rings’ and ‘He is searching for them, searching for IT!’ and Galdalf upon hearing of the loss of the last of the Seven would of course have to mutter the name: Sauron under his breath even as he receives the map and key of Erebor. We could see the meeting of the White Council and how Sauruman overruled Gandalf’s urging to attack Dol Guldur. “HE is seeking them all, even the
Gandalf’s chance meeting with Thorin and his hope for the destruction of Smaug should definitely come into it. If these events aren’t part of the intro they could just as easily be related in flashback by Gandalf in the course of the films.
They definitely need to work Gandalf’s next meeting with the Council into the movies since it takes place during the events of the story (although Bilbo didn’t know the details to relate in his version of events).
I also wonder how much of the history of the forging of the rings and back-story of Gollum/Sméagol finding the One that they want to recap, but if there is a way to do so it would be beneficial.
What do you think? Who hopes to see some of the background information of the larger history worked into things?