Last week, there were rumors that Amazon was interested in developing a television series for its Prime streaming service based off the world of author J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Lord of the Rings. Today it was announced that Amazon had indeed picked up the series, making a multi-season production commitment to telling the story of Tolkien’s epic fantasy world known as Middle-Earth. The deal also includes the option of a potential spin-off series.
This would be the first television series based on Tolkien writings, as The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit were both turned into movie trilogies by director Peter Jackson. But would the series be a retelling of these stories? In a word, no.
What Could This Series Cover?
Tolkien’s writings on the world of Middle-Earth cover much more than just the events of Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit. His epic tale The Silmarillion covers thousands of years of history in the fantasy world, all taking place before Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit. The Return of the King, the final book in the Lord of the Rings series has substantial appendices at the end, covering events that take place at before, during, and after the events of the series outside of the story’s main action. These could all be sources for the Amazon series.
However, the most likely situation would be that the series would take place either before The Hobbit, or between The Hobbit and Lord of the Rings.
In a Vanity Fair article last week, it was said that Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos was personally involved in the negotiations between the studio and the Tolkien Estate. Bezos is known to be a fan of high fantasy and science fiction, so it seems that he would greatly enjoy having his company involved with such a well-known fantasy story.
Matt Galsor, a representative of the Tolkien Estate, said, “We are delighted that Amazon, with its longstanding commitment to literature, is the home of the first-ever multi-season television series for The Lord of the Rings. Sharon and the team at Amazon Studios have exceptional ideas to bring to the screen previously unexplored stories based on J.R.R. Tolkien’s original writings.”
Since the deal for the series has just been made, no cast or premiere date have been announced yet.
Are you excited about the announcement of this new Amazon series? How did you feel about the previous Middle-earth film trilogies? Let us know your thoughts!