‘The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power’ execs are all too aware of high fan expectations

The Lord of the Rings: Rings of Power
Image via Amazon

The folks behind bringing Amazon’s The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power project to life have discussed the challenges and pressures of this ambitious undertaking in a recent profile on Vanity Fair, revealing that they’re well aware of the high bar Peter Jackson has set with his LOTR trilogy.

There’s no denying the hype for The Rings of Power is growing more palpable with each passing day, but a large portion of the fandom is still retaining its reservations about an Amazon-led TV show, and one that’s set in the Second Age of Middle-earth, at that.

After all, Tolkien’s writings on that period are scarce and scattered, to say the least. All Amazon Studios has to go on is a 150-page appendix at the end of The Return of the King and a few sections out of The Silmarillion. That means the showrunners and their writers have to come up with most of the stuff we’re going to see, which once again raises concerns from Tolkien’s most avid gatekeepers.

Though apparently, high fan expectation is something that has dogged their footsteps from the get-go. Speaking on showrunners J.D. Payne and Patrick McKay, here’s what director J.A. Bayona (who helmed the first two episodes) had to say on the matter.

“From the very beginning, I trusted these guys. I knew what they were going through and they knew what I was going through also, because can you imagine going back to such a beloved world and [facing] the high bar of the Peter Jackson movies? We were, all the time, very aware of the massive expectations.”

McKay also addressed expectations by noting that they understand the anxiety of the fandom right now, saying:

“We know what it’s like to be anticipating something and to be terrified that it won’t be what you hope. We’ve been those guys many times over.”

Knowing that the executive producers and the rest of the crew have gone into this project with a sense of self-awareness actually goes a long way in relieving some concerns, though I guess we’ll ultimately have to wait and see if the result has been in favor of the new Lord of the Rings TV series.