Amazon’s quest to resurrect The Lord of the Rings will begin with a multi-season TV series.
Rooted in Middle-earth, the pitch itself is said to be similar to Game of Thrones in terms of scale and scope, and will explore new storylines preceding J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Fellowship of the Ring. Both Netflix and HBO had been approached by the Tolkien estate prior to last week’s revelation, but it was ultimately Amazon that shelled out close to $250 million for LotR‘s global rights, which is said to include the possibility of an additional spinoff. Like we alluded to before, this has the potential to become a Game of Thrones-level franchise for Amazon Studios.
Headed up by the company’s CEO Jeff Bezos, no details were disclosed at the time of writing, but that hasn’t stopped industry insiders from labeling the record-setting deal as “insane,” as that alleged $250 million price tag doesn’t account for the sky-high expenses that often come hand-in-hand with a big-budget fantasy series – think $100m-$150m per season.
Nevertheless, Sharon Tal Yguado, Head of Scripted Series at Amazon Studio, is enthused by the promise of a “multi-season” saga sparking into life on Amazon Prime:
The Lord of the Rings is a cultural phenomenon that has captured the imagination of generations of fans through literature and the big screen. We are honored to be working with the Tolkien Estate and Trust, HarperCollins and New Line on this exciting collaboration for television and are thrilled to be taking The Lord of the Rings fans on a new epic journey in Middle Earth.
What’s more, The Lord of the Rings has sold copious amounts of hard copies through Amazon, the world’s leading bookstore, so you can readily expect some corporate synergy once the studio’s original series begins to fall into place.
Matt Galsor, a representative for the Tolkien Estate and HarperCollins, added:
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.
The Lord of the Rings isn’t the only big-name Hollywood blockbuster bound for television; late last week, we caught wind that Disney had drawn up plans for a live-action Star Wars TV series for 2019. But after three unforgettable fantasy flicks, coupled with Peter Jackson’s bloated Hobbit trilogy, is there still an appetite for Middle-earth? You can chime in with your own thoughts, comments and predictions via the usual place.