“As most people have probably heard by now, Amazon has made some huge (and remarkably expensive) moves recently, securing the rights from the estate of JRR Tolkien to turn ‘The Lord Of The Rings’ into an epic TV event series in the vein of ‘Game of Thrones.’ Amazon chief Jeff Bezos is incredibly excited at the prospect, enough so that he outbid Netflix, who reportedly offered $100 million for the franchise rights, and Bezos even threw in the promise of rights fees and marketing commitments, making some estimate that Amazon has spent well past $200 already on this deal.
But what a lot of people are asking is, will Amazon involve the Lord of Middle Earth himself, Peter Jackson? Jackson’s six Middle-Earth based films, the ‘Lord of the Rings’ trilogy and ‘The Hobbit’ trilogy grossed well over $6 billion at the box-office, and while ‘The Hobbit’ films were not as universally well-received as the original three films, there is no question that Jackson and his team have a passion for the world, not to mention a dearth of experience, props, research, artwork, and writings that would make him an invaluable ally to anyone else looking to dive into adapting Tolkien’s work.
However, there is the point that Jackon’s versions of the films never sat all that well with the Tolkien estate, so Amazon might be steering clear in order to keep the Tolkien’s happy for the moment, not to mention that if they are rebooting the franchise they may want to get as fresh a start as possible, which would mean cutting all ties to former versions. Plus, doing a TV version of the trilogy would mean extending the stories and writing a lot of new material, and Peter’s Jackson’s inability to do that very successfully in ‘The Hobbit’ films may make one wonder how useful he really would be in this new project.
What are your thoughts? Should Jackson be involved? Is it too soon to be doing this anyway? ‘The Hobbit’ films were only a few years ago, and ‘The Lord of The Rings’, while 10 years ago, is still relatively fresh in pop-culture, and I am not sure they are going to get the same die-hard fans and must-see attitude for a series where everyone already knows how it is going to end (though I suppose to same could have been said about the movies, whose ending was already written in the books). Feel free to share your thoughts on the matter in the comments below!