Mega franchises like Star Wars and Harry Potter are currently thriving with upcoming installments on the horizon. It was only a matter of time until the world of J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Lord of the Rings returned to the limelight. That time is now.
Amazon has sealed a towering deal for the property’s global TV rights, which includes the commitment for a multi-season show.
Deadline reports that Amazon paid the nearly $250 million price tag for the rights alone. Amazon Studios will produce in cooperation with the Tolkien Estate, HarperCollins and New Line Cinema (a division of Warner Bros.). New Line Cinema distributed the original LOTR trilogy, helmed by Peter Jackson, from 2001 to 2003. A decade later they re-teamed for another trilogy adapting Tolkien’s The Hobbit. Those six films certainly conjure expectations of what to expect, but HBO’s Game of Thrones might be the better comparison. No doubt Amazon wants to have the next hit fantasy series as Thrones begins to sunset.
Pictured: The Lord of the Rings: Fellowship of the Ring, Hugo Weaving, 2001
“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,” said Matt Galsor, a representative for the Tolkien Estate. Amazon promised that the show would take fans on “a new epic journey in Middle-earth.” The adaptation will explore events and storylines preceding The Fellowship of the Ring, the first film in the LOTR trilogy.
Based off that description this could take place before, during or after the events of The Hobbit. The majority of the films took place during Middle-earth’s Third Age. Rest assured, there are plenty of other eras, wars and characters worth exploring. The deal also includes the potential for spin-off series. Does this mean we could get an adaptation of The Adventures of Tom Bombadil someday? Don’t rule it out. It sounds like Amazon’s pockets run as deep as the Mines of Moria.