LOTR Director Peter Jackson Discusses Rings of Power

Oscar-winning writer-director of The Lord of the Rings Peter Jackson has reacted to Amazon’s upcoming TV series, saying the company basically duped him.

Speaking to The Hollywood Reporter, Jackson said Amazon asked him and Lord of the Rings writer-producer Fran Walsh if they wanted to be in the TV series. Jackson said that he and Walsh couldn’t agree until they saw a script, and that’s where communication apparently ended.

“So they said, ‘As soon as we get the first two scripts, we’ll send them to you.’ And the scripts never appeared. That was the last I heard, which is fine. I have no complaints,” Jackson recalled.

Jackson said in an upcoming episode of The Business podcast that he was first approached by Amazon about four or five years ago to see if he might be interested in collaborating on the series.

“So I said, ‘Do you have the scripts yet?’ Because I know how hard it was to write the scripts for the movies, and I didn’t know the people who were writing their scripts. They said, ‘Oh no, we don’t have the scripts yet, but as soon as we do, I’ll send you the scripts.’ I was waiting for the scripts to come, and they never came,” Jackson said.

Despite being left out of the loop, Jackson said he wishes Amazon all the best. “Making movies is hard enough. If someone makes a good movie or TV show, it’s something to celebrate,” she said, adding that he hopes to watch The Rings of Power as a “perfectly neutral viewer.”

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An Amazon spokesperson told THR that it has the “highest respect” for the Jackson and Lord of the Rings movies. However, the statement suggested that Amazon may have broken off talks with Jackson due to rights and legal issues. “In pursuing the rights to our show, we were required to keep the series distinct and separate from the films,” the statement said.

THR sources said Amazon had “legal concerns” to consider regarding how the TV show should be separated from the movies, which are owned by Warner Bros. According to the report, former Amazon Studios chief Sharon Tal Yguado , who left in 2019, advocated bringing Jackson in to help with The Rings of Power.

The site’s sources added that Tolkien’s estate did not want Jackson to work on The Rings of Power. This isn’t a total surprise, as Christopher Tolkien has previously spoken harshly about the Jackson film series. However, the estate agreed to work with Amazon on The Rings of Power, for the reported fee of $250 million.

The Rings of Power premieres September 2 on Prime Video. For more information, check out the Comic-Con trailer breakdown in the image gallery above.

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