never made Halo, but this should patch things up a tad -- the Lord of the Rings director will film The Hobbit in 3D entirely on thirty hand-machined RED EPIC cameras, starting early next year. That's the news straight from RED founder Jim Jannard, but that's not all, as a limited number of pre-production EPIC packages will be available to early adopters as well. $58,000 buys your deep-pocketed budding director a machined EPIC-M body, titanium PL mount, Bomb EVF and 5-inch touchscreen LCD, a REDmote, a four-pack of batteries, a charger and a solid state storage module with a four-pack of 128GB SSDs. Jannard expects to hand-assemble that first batch of 5K imagers in December or January, start the real assembly lines a month after that, and hopefully have widespread availability by NAB in April, though he's not making any promises there. That's how RED rolls. PR after the break.