The Master of Laketown or simply The Master is a minor antagonist in J.R.R. Tolkien's epic novel, The Hobbit, and Peter Jackson's movie adaptations, appearing as the secondary antagonist of The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug and a the tertiary antagonist in The Hobbit: The Battle of Five Armies.
He was the original leader of Laketown, that is, Esgaroth, when Bilbo Baggins and his Dwarf companions arrived. He is shown to be a greedy being, but not underserving of his position in terms of both charisma and intelligence. He is very different in Peter Jackson's film adaptations of the book, in comparison to the book itself. In the book he is shown to be a close comrade to Bard, the leader of the town archers, allowing him to remain in Laketown while the Lakemen recovered from their ordeal with Smaug. In the films however, he is shown to have a much more opposing and antagonistic role. He acts dishonorably and is not respectable, and attempts to forsake the town with his gold and guards. However, he also betrays his fellow assistant, Alfrid Lickspittle by pushing him off the boat, because the only thing he cares about is gold. He is portrayed by Stephen Fry.