LOTR Touted For TV Show

  1. HanaBi

    HanaBi Is it Safe?

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    Lord of the Rings TV show shopped around Hollywood

    Apparently the likes of Amazon, HBO and Netflix et al, are being offered the rights to adapt (read, reboot) either the books and/or Jackson's films into bite-sized chunks for TV (just so long as they cough up between $200-250 million first!)

    Exactly what point there would be in doing this is beyond me, unless the studios bring in more missing chapters from the books (step forward Tom and the Scouring of the Shire), thus providing an adaptation closer to Tolkien's way of thinking compared to the films. Or then again the studios could take liberties and add stuff that never existed in the books or films! (HBO might add sex and gratuitous violence, as is their want with most of their shows)

    It's a big risk given the relatively rather poor returns on Jackson's follow-up trilogy of "The Hobbit". Moreover, not only have the studios got to find at least $200m for the rights, but probably that much again to produce the show!

    All good news for the Tolkien Estate of course.
     
    Nov 7, 2017
    #1
  2. Dan Jones

    Dan Jones Refreshed

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    Interesting, I was thinking about whether a TV show of LOTR would work the other day. Altogether, the extended PJ films come to more than the running length of one TV show, so would they make a series of each book? I think there's scope in the books to actually do that - it isn't just Tom Bombadil and TSOTS which were omitted by PJ - and modern attention spans and the ability to binge watch shows could make it work.

    That's because the films were structurally terrible and made a hash of the storytelling (ie Legolas and Tauriel. Just... no) There is a guy online (Google it) who edited down the Hobbit trilogy into a digestible, 2.5-3 hour film and apparently it's very good!
     
    Nov 9, 2017
    #2
  3. EJDeBrun

    EJDeBrun Well-Known Member

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    *facepalm* why can't they just take a gamble on original content? Or if they can't do that, find a different franchise that hasn't already been done to death in the last 20 years? I could name 5 properties off the top of my head that would be a better fit.

    Also, from what I hear from friends, Amazon and Netflix are ridiculously picky about where they spend their money, so I don't necessarily think this will get picked up. They're smart enough to know when something's been beaten to death already. Netflix especially doesn't want another fiasco like their Death Note reboot.
     
    Nov 11, 2017
    #3
  4. Cli-Fi

    Cli-Fi John J. Falco

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    Amazon Sets ‘The Lord of the Rings’ TV Series With Multi-Season Commitment

    Looks like it's going to be a prequel. I can see some great ideas for a prequel in between the large battle with Sauron and the coming together of the fellowship. What remains to be seen is how many hobbiteses will be involved!
     
    Nov 13, 2017
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  5. EJDeBrun

    EJDeBrun Well-Known Member

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    Tolkien would flail in his grave.
     
    Nov 13, 2017
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  6. HanaBi

    HanaBi Is it Safe?

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    Full blown prequels that more or less followed the books would be ideal, especially if it was going to be multi-season, which offer plenty of episodes to fill out characters, back-stories, historical anecdotes etc.

    Next question is the type of demographic they're going to target - PG or 15?

    Interesting times, if done correctly!
     
    Nov 13, 2017
    #6
  7. Cli-Fi

    Cli-Fi John J. Falco

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    It could also be one of those deals where the fellowship isn't even included but just talked about to death. We have to do this for Frodo. We have to go to this place because the fellowship/gandalf/aragorn wants it done.
     
    Nov 13, 2017
    #7
  8. Toby Frost

    Toby Frost Well-Known Member

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    Can they just not do this, please?
     
    Nov 14, 2017
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  9. HareBrain

    HareBrain Bunny of Wonder Staff Member

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    I'm struggling to see the appeal of several seasons of TV shows set in the world of LOTR but before all the proper action kicks off. Tolkien's world is actually quite low-magic, and lacks the complex politics of Game of Thrones. Without the story of the Fellowship etc, what is there? Barliman Butterbur's marital infidelity? I'm not saying they can't come up with enough material (there was a LOTR MMORG set in the same period, IIRC), but it would seem Amazon could have bought something a lot more promising for a lot less than $200M. Sure, the name alone will guarantee them a good initial audience, but that audience isn't likely to hang around if expectations aren't met, not with the amount of other stuff available.

    ETA: amusing speculation on "likely" content from @Werthead

    The Wertzone: Ideas for the new LORD OF THE RINGS TV series
     
    Last edited: Nov 14, 2017
    Nov 14, 2017
    #9
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  10. Toby Frost

    Toby Frost Well-Known Member

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    This is exactly the sort of thing that worries me. My concern is that they'll insert some generic audience-pleaser stuff, much the same way they did with The Hobbit. "How can we make this longer?" "I know, romantic subplot!" At the moment, it seems that "intrigue" is the keyword because of Game of Thrones, but it may change to something else. Even very worthy plots can become stale box-ticking exercises if done badly (girl is told she can't so something, girl teaches everyone valuable lesson by doing it).

    And, as you say, the LOTR world is pretty static and perhaps even a bit dull without some major threat. There's not much sense of intrigue, just the idea that, so long as a good ruler is on the throne, everything is ok. And zooming down to peasant/minor lord level would risk it becoming either soapy or unnecessarily gritty (one of the "givens" in LOTR is that nobody ever says it would work better as a democracy, for instance). It all feels unnecessary.
     
    Nov 14, 2017
    #10
  11. Teresa Edgerton

    Teresa Edgerton Goblin Princess Staff Member

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    I was all for a new adaptation of LOTR, but the idea of a prequel fills me with a dark apprehension.

    That said, the way to do this right might be to concentrate largely on Aragorn, who had led an interesting and varied life. His years in Gondor and Rohan under an assumed name could provide some excellent material (not to say that they would necessarily use it to produce something excellent, but they could) and there would be plenty of intrigue in Minas Tirith if that is what audiences want. As I recall, Denethor was enormously jealous of "Thorongil", who was a great war hero in the continuing battle with Sauron's minions even though no one knew that Sauron was directing them (just because it was peaceful in the Shire and environs didn't mean that there was peace elsewhere, because there wasn't), and that could provide plenty of drama. Then there are his wide travels, and we might get a chance to see the lands of the Southrons and the Easterlings.

    That's what I would like to see them do, if they must do prequels. They'll probably do something that is a complete travesty instead, but I shall try to hope for the best.
     
    Nov 14, 2017
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  12. HanaBi

    HanaBi Is it Safe?

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    I suppose it depends on how much input the Tolkien Estate will involved with, whether its LOTR reboots, prequels or both.

    I know that Christopher Tolkien wasn't hugely enamoured with the end results of either of Jackson's adaptations; so perhaps this time round he (and the Estate) will insist on far more involvement

    - just my opinion of course.
     
    Nov 14, 2017
    #12
  13. Judderman

    Judderman The Iceman cometh

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    There must be all sort of wild escapades possible for Aragorn, Gandalf, Saruman, Sauron, Legolas and other elves etc. Though it would be tough to link many of them. Big series tend to jump between ensemble cast.
     
    Dec 5, 2017
    #13
  14. DelActivisto

    DelActivisto WARG!

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    I'd like it. Game of Thrones could use some competition.
     
    Dec 6, 2017
    #14
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