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Amazon buys up Middle-earth, it searches the One Ring! (Rings of Power news thread)


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1 hour ago, Bilbo said:

I can’t stop laughing at this. 

322500DB-D17A-49AA-9C9D-BFB16C3887E2.jpeg


Someone please tell me this isn’t WETA.

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9 minutes ago, Nick1Ø66 said:

Someone please tell me this isn’t WETA.

 

Weta didn't do the armour: only weapons, prosthetics and the overall concept art.

 

And only for this first season, it seems.

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6 hours ago, Chen G. said:

 

This is the real killer for me. There were an interview or two where the showrunners asked us to not compare to the movies, and its like "tough luck, buddy. In a world where people can't even watch the Bakshi film and avoid comparisons to the Jackson Lord of the Rings, how can your show avoid those comparisons?" But, beyond that, if you want to eschew comparisons to the films, why go for production design that so desparately wants to be a movie prequel?

 

And ontop of that they say that didn't want to do "a prequel" and yet thus far I'm seeing a lot of box-checking going on. I actually compiled a list:

 

 

 

Yeah. If they don't want comparisons to the films (and that's silly to expect), maybe they shouldn't have tried so hard to make their show look like the films.  I mean, when you have that Balrog shot at the end of the trailer...please. It's obvious what they're trying to do.

 

In an event, given the significant amount of backlash to the show so far, I've noticed a shift in their (so far disastrous) marketing strategy. There's a lot of "we keep going to back to the books", and "we're not reflecting modern politics" etc. from the showrunners. No doubt in an effort to appease the significant portion of the Tolkien fan base that's sceptical of this project.  But all this is belied by the recent absurd comments by the cast (and I think you know what they are) who apparently didn't get the memo.  Their priorities are clear, and respecting Tolkien's vision, and spirit, doesn't seem to be paramount among them.

 

 

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5 minutes ago, Nick1Ø66 said:

all this is belied by the recent absurd comments by the cast...and I think you know what they are.

 

Those cast members who think that for them to appear in a Tolkien adaptation is somekind of big, nigh-world-changing societal statement? Yeah, I think I know. Its...yeah...

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4 hours ago, Chen G. said:

 

Those cast members who think that for them to appear in a Tolkien adaptation is somekind of big, nigh-world-changing societal statement? Yeah, I think I know. Its...yeah..

 

Quote

“We are redressing the balance within the film and television, television industry and of course, this franchise and I hope, lots of franchises moving forward... For new generations THIS is their version of Tolkien, THIS is what my daughter will see of Tolkien’s works."

 

How can anyone claim to have respect for the source material and say something like that? Most of the cast comments are filled with stuff like that. 

 

So Tolkien has to be "redressed". Apparently, in curtains. 

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15 minutes ago, Nick1Ø66 said:

 

Quote

“We are redressing the balance within the film and television, television industry and of course, this franchise and I hope, lots of franchises moving forward... For new generations THIS is their version of Tolkien, this is what my daughter will see of Tolkien’s works."

 

Oi gevalt...

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2 hours ago, Nick1Ø66 said:

How can anyone claim to have respect for the source material and say something like that? Most of the cast comments are filled with stuff like that. 

 

So Tolkien has to be "redressed".

 

 

No doubt they believe they're 'improving' Tolkien.

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My issue is less with that: I believe one needs to be somewhat cavalier towards the material one is adapting to be able to make those decisions that are necessary for the adaptation.

 

Its just that thus far so much of what I'm seeing seems to suggest that these showrunners got carried up in the idea of doing "a fantasy show" to the extent that we're getting a show that's very overtly and self-consciously fantastical. Art direction is a hit-and-miss for me thus far.

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45 minutes ago, Chen G. said:

Its just that thus far so much of what I'm seeing seems to suggest that these showrunners got carried up in the idea of doing "a fantasy show" to the extent that we're getting a show that's very overtly and self-consciously fantastical. Art direction is a hit-and-miss for me thus far.

 

While I hate to admit it, I do think some of the art direction, particularly some of the settings, looks...OK so far. It does look like they're giving some thought to that.  Though I completely agree that the whole thing looks much too "fantasy". 

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3 hours ago, Nick1Ø66 said:

 

Yeah. If they don't want comparisons to the films (and that's silly to expect), maybe they shouldn't have tried so hard to make their show look like the films.  I mean, when you have that Balrog shot at the end of the trailer...please. It's obvious what they're trying to do.

 

In an event, given the significant amount of backlash to the show so far, I've noticed a shift in their (so far disastrous) marketing strategy. There's a lot of "we keep going to back to the books", and "we're not reflecting modern politics" etc. from the showrunners. No doubt in an effort to appease the significant portion of the Tolkien fan base that's sceptical of this project.  But all this is belied by the recent absurd comments by the cast, who apparently didn't get the memo (and I think you know what they are).  Their priorities are clear, and respecting Tolkien's vision, and spirit, doesn't seem to be paramount among them.

 

 

Which comments from the actors would this be? I haven’t been following too closely.

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32 minutes ago, Nick1Ø66 said:

While I hate to admit it, I do think some of the art direction, particularly some of the settings, looks...OK so far. It does look like they're giving some thought to that.  Though I completely agree that the whole thing looks much too "fantasy". 

 

Oh, I like some of the stuff! I think Khazad-Dum and Ost-in-Edhil look very nice indeed, and while it can become too much, for the moment its nice to see knights in armour on the screen again! Hearing Peter Mullan's gravely tones as Durin III was bliss, even if he's much too cool for that crude crown.

 

Other stuff like the Dwalkyrie or Miriel's helmet (WTF?!)...not so much. The scale motif, along with the horse-shaped hilts and horsetail-crested helmets is another curious one, and I can't avoid thinking that the thought process was "well, we can't have Rohirrim in this, but we want the Rohan iconography in this. Wait, Numenore has cavalry, right? Lets just put it there!"

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2 hours ago, Bilbo said:

From what I’ve seen it’s the wide angle stuff that looks good. Squint and it looks like the PJ movies. But the closer you get to the details…

 

B8DA5851-65C1-4640-8D72-FA77D5A0F326.gif

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14 hours ago, Mr. Who said:

Which comments from the actors would this be? I haven’t been following too closely.

 

i have no idea

 

i love out of context comments by actors forced to be marketers while not allowed to say anything at all! they're so helpful

 

(not that they cannot be dumb as bricks like everybody else).

18 hours ago, Chen G. said:

 

Those cast members who think that for them to appear in a Tolkien adaptation is somekind of big, nigh-world-changing societal statement? Yeah, I think I know. Its...yeah...

 

oh wow that is just like toxic fandom but by actors

 

it's just an unimportant show. it's barely inside the tolkien world, and it's also unimportant as a mainstram thing.

 

it's the constant THIS IS THE MOST IMPORTANT THING EVER that turns into stupidity, and also sometimes pedestals for the source material (the actual material) that are also a disservice to it

 

...

 

Overall, I'm amused that only now I start seeing people concerned about clothing, weaponry, weapons design or civil and military architecture in fantasy and historical things, after being told for ages that it's fiction and that it doesn't matter. next we'll talk about martial arts maybe.

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3 hours ago, Brónach said:

Overall, I'm amused that only now I start seeing people concerned about clothing, weaponry, weapons design or civil and military architecture in fantasy and historical things, after being told for ages that it's fiction and that it doesn't matter.

 

It doesn't matter in terms of being actually realistic: it matters in terms of percieved realism. A good example are some of the Elven blades we see in this: do swords with hilts as huge as these actually exist? Sure! Just look at a 15th century Zweihander. But when most people see it, it registers as "fantasy sword!"

 

I think the triumph of Jackson's films rested on two things - the earnestness of the performances, and the naturalism of the production design. The combination of both of those things made it look more like a historical movie (very much modelled on Braveheart) than a fantasy movie of yore.

 

Its obviously a balancing act: Jackson didn't set out to totally historicize the fantasy a-la King Arthur: there are still fantasy creatures and impossible structures and - as with any action movie - beats that stretch credulity. But on the whole they nevertheless had a certain naturalism. This...doesn't have that feeling, for the most part.

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Marketing stuff like this never actually bothers me but I know it really bothers some people. 
 

the tie in book covers for the Lord of the Rings annoys me more. 

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The tie-in book covers don’t bother me because they’ll always keep some nicer legit edition in print, and the tie-in may be the thing that actually brings a kid to the Tolkien book.

 

I also don’t have a problem with the marketing - I find it funny.  Kit Kat thing isn’t as funny as the Hobbit Dennys menus, but there’s still time.

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The Hobbit Denny’s menus were the absolute peak. Nothing will ever tip them. 
 

well. Maybe the German burger spoiling Rise of Skywalker. 

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5 minutes ago, Bilbo said:

Maybe the German burger spoiling Rise of Skywalker. 

 

I don't know this story - what happened?

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14 minutes ago, Jay said:

 

I don't know this story - what happened?


So Bruger King in Germany ran some in store competition that gave away spoilers for Rise of Skywalker. 
 

https://screenrant.com/rise-skywalker-ending-burger-king-spoilers-disney-before-release/

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Sometimes I can’t believe I lived through that. Such a surreal experience.

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1 hour ago, Stu said:

Guessing that joke only lands for those that live around the Levant...

Ah I think it’s pretty self explanatory. The video looks like the opening for a soap opera.

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Offered without comment.

 

Quote

 

Peter Jackson Says Amazon’s ‘Lord of the Rings’ TV Series Ghosted Him


The Oscar-winning director says Amazon asked him to be involved with its mega-budget LOTR prequel – and then cut off contact.

 

 

 

Quote

‘The Lord Of The Rings: The Rings Of Power’ Actress Nazanin Boniadi Says Her Character Is An Activist

 

“For Bronwyn, she is a healer. But she taps into her inner lioness and I as an activist, as a longtime human rights activist"

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With the Tolkien estate working with Amazon on this, is there a possibility Amazon might be able to negotiate another deal to get the rights to some more second age material from the legendarium? Or are other Tolkien works forever and always off the table outside of LOTR and The Hobbit?
 

I wonder if the estate is taking a “wait and see” approach? ( ie if this show is a *success* this season they may be willing to talk rights to more material)

 

(Forgive the noob-level question. I haven’t really followed all the legal details all that closely. )

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We don't know.

 

Personally, I think the more substantial of Tolkien's stories - certainly the "Great Tales" of the First Age - deserve to feature on the big-screen. The Second Age stuff is basically a glorified bridge between the stories of the First Age and those of the late Third Age, and so I'm more accepting to it being a television series.

 

Warners have started a tentative move into the earlier stories of the Third Age with The War of the Rohirrim, and there's little stopping them from also doing the Angmar Wars (set-up heavily in The Hobbit), the Kinstrife, Battle of the Camp and the Oath of Cirion, which pretty much sums-up the worthwhile storylines presented in the appendices. One hopes they'll be emboldened to do those live-action.

 

At the same time, either way I don't want to get too much Tolkien: a streaming show and six films coming on seven, long though they may be, is still fine by me. But the sheer numbers of shows and films pulled by Star Wars and Marvel is overkill for me. Thankfully, Middle Earth projects have proved harder to produce, which helped keep the numbers in check.

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Thanks @Nick1Ø66 and @Chen G.. That helped organize a lot of the different info that’s floating out there for me.

7 hours ago, Chen G. said:

At the same time, either way I don't want to get too much Tolkien: a streaming show and six films coming on seven, long though they may be, is still fine by me. But the sheer numbers of shows and films pulled by Star Wars and Marvel is overkill for me. Thankfully, Middle Earth projects have proved harder to produce, which helped keep the numbers in check.

I 100% feel you on this. And I can see the fear of Tolkien’s works becoming just another bit o’ IP to be churned out. The concept of “scarcity” seems to be completely lost on all the companies producing big franchise projects today. (Remember when there used to be 3 or 4 years in between Star Wars movies? lol) Everything needs to be an expanded universe with a dozen spin-off shows in the works produced at a steady stream. I understand the appeal of the business model (and it’s seems to be working from a financial standpoint). But it’s become a “Christmas every day” scenario. Some things are more special because they only come around once in a while. 
 

That being said, it’s been a while  (2014 Battle of Five Armies?) since we’ve had a big budget depiction of Tolkien’s world. I’m interested (actually eager!) to see it.  But I can see how it will open the floodgates. “Release the riverrrr!!!…” 😬

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17 hours ago, WampaRat said:

That being said, it’s been a while  (2014 Battle of Five Armies?) since we’ve had a big budget depiction of Tolkien’s world. I’m interested (actually eager!) to see it.

 

Some of us count by extended editions, and so its only been since October 2015. I, too, am certainly game to watch The Rings of Power and certainly The War of the Rohirrim. I just hope it stays at a trickle like that, rather than floodgates opening.

 

Quote

Assuming that the other books remain off the table, it will be interesting to see where Warners & New Line take this, and how they'll manage the different, and perhaps conflicting, projects. Will Warner explore other areas of The Appendices in film? Will Amazon do the same for TV?

 

I think the Angmar War is the best contender from both sides, although I actually think Warners are in a better position to swoop on those at the moment, while Amazon are busy with this current show. Those wars are the main substance of the early Third Age narrative and they're mentioned in The Hobbit so much that it would seem a no-brainer.

 

I would much prefer to see a film about the tail-end of the Angmar Wars or two or three films across it, rather than have Amazon continue to compress all of history to seemingly a few years. Plus, there's something to be said for Tolkien on the big screen!

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Really? She doesn't do much for me. Not that it matters: I don't think Galadriel is a character the male audience is supposed to desire, particularly, at least as compared to Bronwyn and Earien.

 

Clark looks compelling enough in the role, although I know her "jugendlich" voice is throwing some people off.

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2 hours ago, Chen G. said:

I would much prefer to see a film about the tail-end of the Angmar Wars or two or three films across it, rather than have Amazon continue to compress all of history to seemingly a few years

 

Artistically, an anthology series (or at least one that told a new story every season) would have made more sense. Commercially, not so much, so from their perspective I understand why Amazon went the way they did.

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I do, too! But you'd think having two shows - one about the Forging era and one about the Akallabeth era - would have made both more artistic sense AND more commercial sense.

 

I generally prefer cycles to anthologies.

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The problem, and it's a real one, is that an anthology series (i.e. a new story every episode or two) would be considerably more expensive, and there just wouldn't be the opportunity for an audience to create any kind of real attachment to the stories or characters. Even if you just did a new story every season, you'd more or less have the same problem. Higher cost+lower ratings is probably something Amazon isn't interested in.

 

It occurs to me that Apple is trying something similar with Foundation...i.e. taking a story that takes place over millennia, condensing it, and making up a lot of stuff that isn't the books to try to tie it all together. I haven't watched the series (and have no intention to), so I'd be curious what Foundation fans think of how it's going.

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