Ready or not, we’re going back to Middle-Earth. Amazon Prime’s upcoming Lord of the Rings spinoff/prequel series is a serious contender for the most expensive show ever made, with the House of Bezos clearly looking to cash in on the serialized fantasy void Game of Thrones left behind. Details have been kept remarkably under wraps, with very little known about just what to expect from this series, but now we at least know when we’ll be able to watch it. The as-of-yet-untitled series will drop in weekly installments on Amazon Prime Video starting September 2, 2022.
Oh, there’s also the first image from the series. Although we don’t know who’s in this shot or even really what it’s of, but it sure looks Lord of the Rings-y. Writers J.D. Payne and Patrick McKay are only describing the series as an “epic drama” set thousands of years before Bilbo stumbled across the One Ring. That doesn’t necessarily mean we won’t see any familiar faces, Tolkien’s characters being long-lived as they are. We know Morfydd Clark will play a young Galadriel, and Elrond and Sauron will also pop up. Is that any of them in this photo? Your guess is as good as ours.
It’s a risky gambit on Amazon’s part, taking one of — if not the — most closely protected intellectual properties in the world and attempting to squeeze some more good stories out of it. This, obviously, Hollywood stretched a good yarn past its breaking point, and some fans are already nervous about the show’s rumored nude scenes. Trusting the show to Payne and McKay is also a gamble, as the young writing team only has one previous movie to their credit in Star Trek: Beyond. But then, Peter Jackson had a pretty slim resume before he convinced New Line Cinema to let him take a crack at Tolkien’s trilogy, and look how that worked out.