The Hobbit is a 1977 animated musical television special created by Rankin/Bass, a studio known for their holiday specials, and animated by Topcraft, a precursor to Studio Ghibli, using lyrics adapted from the book. The film is an adaptation of the 1937 book of the same name by J. R. R. Tolkien and was first broadcast on NBC in the United States on Sunday, November 27, 1977.


The plot of the animated production is in most respects similar to that of the book, which was already styled as a classic children's novel, and so is adapted in that vein for a younger audience; but certain plot points are significantly compressed due to the time limitations of the format. In addition, certain scenes are obviously edited for commercial breaks. In general, alterations include simple omission of additional detail, as the producers expressed their desire to adhere to the written text, including lyrics adapted from the songs in the book but in much longer and greater format.