Jackson “seriously considered” undergoing hypnosis to watch his Academy Award-winning trilogy films like a regular fan without being immersed in the viewing experience as a director.
“When we did ‘The Lord of the Rings’ movies I always felt I was the unlucky person who never got to see [them] as a coming-out-of-the-blue film,” the director explained during The Hollywood Reporter’s Awards Chatter podcast. “By the time there were screening I was immersed in it for five or six years. It was such a loss for me not [to] be able to see them like everyone else.”
He continued, “I actually did seriously consider going to some hypnotherapy guy to hypnotize me to make me forget about the films and the work I had done over the last six or seven years so I could sit and enjoy them. I didn’t follow through with it, but I did talk to [British mentalist] Derren Brown about that and he thought he could do it.”
The almost $3 billion-grossing franchise spurred the upcoming Prime Video prequel series “The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power” inspired by Tolkien’s footnotes and appendices in the novels.
However, Jackson shared that he was not involved in the series, despite originally connecting with producers.
“They asked me if I wanted to [be] involved – [writer-producer Fran Walsh] and I – and I said, ‘That’s an impossible question to answer without seeing a script,'” Jackson recalled. “So they said, ‘As soon as we get the first couple scripts, we’ll send them to you.’ And the scripts never showed up. That’s the last thing I heard, which is fine. No complaints at all.”
Amazon later responded to Jackson’s comments to THR by citing an “obligation” to differentiate from his films since Warner Bros. Discovery still owns the original property and “The Rings of Power” is a separate IP.
“In pursuing the rights for our show, we were obligated to keep the series distinct and separate from the films,” a spokesperson for Amazon said. “We have the utmost respect for Peter Jackson and ‘The Lord of The Rings’ films and are thrilled that he is looking forward to watching ‘The Rings of Power.'”
And Jackson will be watching the new series, without hypnosis needed.
“I’m not the sort of guy who wishes ill will,” the Oscar winner said. “Filmmaking is hard enough. If somebody makes a good film or TV show, it’s something to celebrate. The one thing I am looking forward to is actually seeing it as a perfectly neutral viewer.”