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Everything we know about Amazon’s ‘Lord of the Rings’ TV series

Charmaine Blake

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Peter Jackson’s Lord of the Rings movie trilogy gave the world an epic fantasy adaptation unlike anything we had seen before. The films were triumphs of fantasy worldbuilding that transported fans into the heart of Middle-earth and paved the way for adaptations like HBO’s Game of Thrones. Now Amazon hopes to compete with George R.R. Martin’s fantasy universe by returning to J.R.R. Tolkien’s.

Amazon announced in November that it had acquired the rights to create a Lord of the Rings TV series, just months after CEO Jeff Bezos reportedly challenged Amazon Studios executives to find the next Game of Thrones. The show is still in very early stages of development, but if it comes out in the next two to three years, it could find itself going up against one or more Game of Thrones spinoffs underway for HBO. Here’s what we know so far.

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Lord of the Rings TV series news

While Amazon has confirmed it is working on a Lord of the Rings TV series, we know very little about what story it might tell. The company revealed the series would be set prior to Fellowship of the Ring—before Frodo hits the road on his quest to chuck the One Ring into the fires of Mount Doom. Amazon has already promised multiple seasons of the show and a possible spinoff series set in Middle-earth.

According to Deadline, Amazon paid close to $250 million just for rights to the property. That’s a staggering number, especially when you consider the total production budgets of most major blockbusters are cheaper. Sharon Tal Yguado, head of scripted series for Amazon Studios, said development of the show would be a collaborative effort with the Tolkien Estate and Trust, HarperCollins, and New Line.

“We are delighted that Amazon, with its longstanding commitment to literature, is the home of the first-ever multi-season television series for The Lord of the Rings,” Matt Galsor, a representative for the Tolkien Estate and Trust and HarperCollins, said as part of the initial announcement. “Sharon and the team at Amazon Studios have exceptional ideas to bring to the screen previously unexplored stories based on J.R.R. Tolkien’s original writings.”

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Lord of the Rings TV series cast

The Lord of the Rings TV series doesn’t have a writer or director, much less a cast, but that hasn’t stopped some Middle-earth veterans from chiming in.

Ian McKellen, who played Gandalf in the Lord of the Rings and Hobbit trilogies, told BBC Radio2 host Graham Norton that he’d be game to come back as the gray wizard—though he has yet to be asked to reprise the role. The 78-year-old actor joked, “Gandalf is 7,000 years old, so I’m not too old.”

Gimli actor John Rhys-Davies, meanwhile, is siding with fans who don’t like the idea of another Lord of the Rings adaptation so soon after Peter Jackson’s definitive retelling.

“It’s not about doing it better, it’s about making more money, that’s all,” Rhys-Davies told Den of Geek. “If they think they can make more money, then they will.”

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Lord of the Rings TV series plot

While we don’t know what story the Lord of the Rings TV series will tell, we can make some educated guesses as to where it could go. Aragorn, Legolas, Gandalf, Gimli, and even our Hobbit friends were around long before they volunteered to save Middle-earth. Frodo and Sam likely spent much of that time reading, gardening, eating, and doing other respectable Hobbit things that’d be pretty boring for TV.

But Tolkien’s ancillary works elaborate on more interesting backstories for Gandalf and Aragorn. Aragorn’s mother brought him to the elf city of Rivendell when he was just 2 years old after an Orc arrow killed his father. Elrond fostered young Aragon and kept his identity secret to protect the future king of Gondor. In his early years, Aragorn went on adventures with Elrond’s sons, befriended Gandalf, and fought preliminary battles against Sauron and his allies. Some of this background is mentioned in Lord of the Rings—remember the scene where Aragorn reveals he fought alongside King Théoden’s father?—but much of it has never been explored on screen.

Gandalf also did a great deal of adventuring beyond the main storylines of the Hobbit and Lord of the Rings. The Hobbit trilogy already dabbled in some of that history, including Gandalf’s journey to confront an evil force known as the Necromancer at the enemy fortress Dol Guldur.

Of course, there’s no guarantee Amazon will anchor its series in the backstories of familiar characters. The show will be “based on” Tolkien’s work. That leaves the door open for a looser reimagining of characters or events Tolkien merely mentions.

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Lord of the Rings TV series release date

The Lord of the Rings TV series does not yet have a projected release date. Given that HBO bought the television rights to Game of Thrones in September 2008 and it didn’t appear on TV until spring 2011, we’re expecting a minimum of two to three years of development and production time.

Read more: https://www.dailydot.com/parsec/lord-of-the-rings-tv-series/

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‘About Time’ may not be a holiday movie, but it’s perfect holiday viewing nonetheless

Charmaine Blake

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Image: universal

“Each December, we bust out the holiday cheer, from obnoxious Christmas music to Love Actually on a loop. I’m all about this — I usually leave my tree up until my January birthday — but I start with a different movie: About Time.

From Love Actually writer-director Richard Curtis, About Time is comparatively trimmed down, following the life of Tim (Domhnall Gleeson), the young son in a family where the men can travel through time. There are no other sci-fi frills (and probably some plot holes as a result, but who cares!), since as Tim’s father (Bill Nighy) notes, they can’t change anything outside their own lives.

Instead, we watch Tim try to make the most of his existence, not with money or glory but with happiness, plain and pure.

I’ve loved About Time probably since I saw the trailer in 2013. It was the first movie I saw in theaters after moving to New York that fall, with an old friend and diehard movie buff who was seeing it for a second time. We saw it just after Thanksgiving, which gave it a built-in holiday association for me.

As with Curtis’ previous work, what that truly stands out is the writing – specifically the dialogue, which is unique a way that reflects, you know, how people actually talk, but remains memorable in its specificity (“She wasn’t like other mums. There was something solid about her, rectangular”).

Because Tim grew up by the sea in Cornwall, much of the film occupies its own world, and the parts that take place in London are evergreen, unencumbered by technology or pop culture references.

Like Love Actually, About Time has some issues. After a lovely meet cute with Mary (Rachel McAdams), Tim loses her number and has to meet her again for the first time…………………………………………”

Read more: https://mashable.com/article/about-time-watch-of-the-week/

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Jodie Whittaker will be returning for Season 12 of ‘Doctor Who’

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Jodie Whittaker is still The Doctor.

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“God is a woman and so is The Doctor for one more season, at least.

Jodie Whittaker, who’s currently playing The Doctor in Season 11 of Doctor Who, just confirmed that she will be returning to her role of extraterrestrial Time Lord in the legendary BBC sci-fi series for Season 12.

Whittaker told The Hollywood Reporter that she’s definitely not ready to hand over the Doctor Who-baton to another actor just yet.

“It’s such an incredible role,” Whittaker told THR. “It’s been an extraordinary journey so far and I’m not quite ready to hand it over yet.”

Just one previous Doctor, Christopher Eccleston, only lasted for one season (Season 1 in 2005.) The other actors have had between two and six years as The Doctor.

While Whittaker’s performance as the first female Doctor in Doctor Who’s 55-year history has been widely praised by critics, there was a good deal of backlash when Whittaker was revealed as the 13th Doctor last year.

Whittaker seemed pretty chill about it, though. She explained in an interview with the BBC that the character of The Doctorrepresents everything that’s exciting about change.

I want to tell the fans not to be scared by my gender,Whittaker said. “The fans have lived through so many changes, and this is only a new, different one, not a fearful one.”

Please bring your bad-ass attitude to Season 12, Jodie.”

Read more: https://mashable.com/article/jodie-whittaker-doctor-who-season-12/

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Jason Momoa goes full action hero in ‘SNL’ promo

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“Jason Momoa is hosting the next episode of Saturday Night Live and things are already looking pretty promising based on this promo.

Momoa, who plays Aquaman in the DC movie universe and previously played Khal Drogo in Game of Thrones, doesn’t look like he’ll be shying away from his beefcake-y vibe on SNL.

He definitely looks like he’ll be bringing some good energy to the show on Dec. 8.”

Read more: https://mashable.com/video/jason-momoa-snl/

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