A TV series based on the Lord of the Rings books has been given a multi-season commitment at Amazon.
The show will take place sometime before the events of the trilogy’s first entry, The Fellowship of the Ring. The company has rights for a potential spin-off series as well.
Rolling Stone measures the deal at $200 million while Deadline puts it at $250 million. Variety said Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos was personally involved in the deals when the project was first rumored earlier in the month.
“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 said in a statement. “Sharon [Tal Yguado, Amazon’s head of scripted series] 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.”
Judging by that “previously unexplored stories” comment, the series probably won’t cover the same events as the Hobbit movie trilogy. Those movies followed Bilbo Baggins and Gandalf on a journey that took place 60 years before the events of The Fellowship of the Ring. The movies were released from 2012 to 2014.
Rolling Stone expects the budget to be $150 million per season. For comparison, the last six episodes of Game of Thrones are expecting to cost $15 million each while something like Stranger Things and American Gods are priced at around $8 million an episode.
Back in September, Bezos said he wanted the next Game of Thrones for Amazon. Securing the rights to the other immensely popular fantasy franchise is a good start.