J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Lord of the Rings is coming to life as a television series. On Monday, Amazon announced that it has acquired the global television rights to the franchise as a Prime original.
It’ll be produced by Amazon Studios in collaboration with HarperCollins, Tolkien Estate and Trust and New Line Cinema, a division of Warner Bros. Entertainment.
The multi-season series will be set in Middle Earth and explore new storylines preceding the events of The Fellowship of the Ring. Financial terms of the licensing agreement were not mentioned although according to a report from Deadline, it is valued around the $250 million mark.
Worth noting is the fact that the deal includes a potential additional spin-off although I suspect that’ll only materialize if the original series is a hit (and there’s little reason to think it won’t be).
Sharon Tal Yguado, Head of Scripted Series at Amazon Studios, said The Lord of the Rings is a cultural phenomenon that has captured the imagination of generations of fans through literature and the big screen, adding that they’re honored to be working on the collaboration for television.
Amazon didn’t say when it expects the first season to be ready but given that a deal was just now reached, it’s safe to assume that it’s at least a few years out. Nevertheless, it’s a serious get for Amazon as it continues to compete alongside other streaming powerhouses like Netflix and Hulu as well as traditional outfits like HBO and Showtime.