Will Poulter landed what sounded like the role of a lifetime, Beldor, the lead in Amazon Prime Video’s J.R.R. Tolkien-inspired series, tentatively referred to as ‘Lord of the Rings’. However, the actor has dropped out, even as production is inching toward kicking off. Apparently, Poulter had never officially signed on, and Amazon never made an official statement that he had been cast. Similarly, Amazon has not made a statement regarding his departure. His reason for leaving is due to “scheduling conflicts,” although the other project is unknown.
You may recall that Poulter had also been cast to play Pennywise in the ‘It’ movie franchise, but dropped out after director Cary Fukunaga departed. The ‘It’ movies wound up being directed by Andy Muschietti, with Bill Skarsgård as Pennywise. In addition to Fukunaga’s leaving, Poulter cited scheduling conflicts as he was set to begin work on the crime drama ‘Detroit’.
Poulter may be best-known for playing Gally in the ‘Maze Runner’ franchise or Colin Ritman in ‘Black Mirror: Bandersnatch’. He was seen earlier this year in the acclaimed horror movie ‘Midsommar’, and may also be recognized for ‘We’re the Millers’, ‘The Revenant’, or ‘The Chronicles of Narnia: The Voyage of the Dawn Treader’.
The Amazon ‘Lord of the Rings’ series has reportedly picked up one new cast member, Ema Horvath, but like Poulter, it doesn’t seem as that is a complete done deal. The cast reportedly also includes Markella Kavenagh as the show’s lead female, a character named Tyra; Joseph Mawle as the show’s main villain, Oren; and Maxim Baldry, in an undisclosed role. Obviously, Poulter was the biggest name in the cast, so look for Amazon and the producers to seek someone of similar stature in terms of recognition.
There is a little bit of a shuffle going on with the production of ‘Lord of the Rings’ already, as Amazon ordered a second season, which has knocked the writing team for a loop as they are revisiting the scripts for Season 1 to make them work better for a longer narrative. The first two episodes, to be directed by J.A. Bayona, were expected to film in early 2020, to be followed by a 4-5 month hiatus to retool the series. So… add this to the list of complications.
Are you looking forward to the ‘Lord of the Rings’ series? How do you feel about Will Poulter leaving?
Source: The Hollywood Reporter