[Editor’s note: This story was originally published on October 7, 2019]
While Amazon has become an Emmys juggernaut with more intimate series like “Fleabag” and “The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel,” those kind of character-based stories are not all the streaming service does – or plans to do. And no upcoming series proves that point more than Amazon’s long-awaited, multi-season television adaptation of material surrounding J.R.R. Tolkien’s “The Lord of the Rings.”
Since it was originally announced in 2017, news about the show has come in fits and starts. In recent months, 20 new cast members joined the project and a synopsis of the series was reported by TheOneRing.net. In that synopsis, it confirms that locations that will be included in the series are Númenor, the Misty Mountains, and the elf-capital of Lindon. The story will take place in Tolkien’s Second Age era, millennia before the events of “The Hobbit.”
Including multiple trailers for the show, a handful of noteworthy details about the series have been released since its announcement. Perhaps the most startling: that the total price tag for the first season of the show is estimated to come in at $450 million. (By comparison, a season of “Game of Thrones” was estimated to cost $90 million, or about $15 million an episode.) According to New Zealand publication Stuff, the amount was ascertained by the NZ$160 million tax credit the production will receive for filming in the country. To receive a tax credit of that amount, the budget is estimated to come in at just shy of half a billion American dollars.
IndieWire has compiled a list of key details about the upcoming series. From its big shoes to fill as another Tolkien adaptation to its hush-hush casting, below is everything you need to know about Amazon’s “The Lord of the Rings.”