Sir Ian McKellen has updated his personal website implying he has joined 'The Hobbit'.

The British actor - who has portrayed bearded wizard Gandalf in all the previous 'Lord Of The Rings' movies - has not been certain for the troubled prequel to the films, but his website has now updated its 2010 Film section implying he will take part in the movie shoot in February 2011.

It states: "THE HOBBIT's, two films, start shooting in New Zealand in February 2011. Filming will take over a year. Casting in Los Angeles, New York City and London has started. The Script too proceeds. The first draft is crammed with old and new friends, again on a quest in Middle Earth. (sic)"

No official release has yet confirmed the news he has joined the Peter Jackson-directed epic, which stars Martin Freeman as Bilbo Baggins.

Speaking about his involvement in the project in late October, the 71-year-old actor revealed nothing had been signed.

He said: "I am not under contract no. I'm not going to say any more than that because it might complicate things!

So I would say - at the moment - no, I am not under contract. I'm not saying any more than what I've said."