Peter Jackson says Amazon’s ‘Lord of the Rings’ TV series misled him – The Hollywood Reporter

peter jackson is weighing on Amazon The Lord of the rings T.V. series.

The Oscar-winning director of the Lord of the Rings Y The Hobbit trilogies reveals that the studio asked him to participate in its next mega-budget series The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power and promised to send him scripts, then never contacted him again.

“They asked me if I wanted to participate. [writer-producer Fran Walsh] and me, and I said, ‘That’s an impossible question to answer without seeing a script,'” Jackson recalls Scott Feinberg in the hollywood reporter‘s awards talk podcast. “So they said, ‘As soon as we get the first two scripts, we’ll send them to you.’ And the scripts never appeared. That’s the last I heard, which is fine. No complaints at all.”

in a future The business podcast talking to the hollywood reporterKim Masters of Kim Masters, the filmmaker echoes the anecdote and phrases it slightly differently, but does the same thing: “I was asked about four or five years ago if I’d be interested,” he says. “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 wrote their scripts. They said, ‘Oh no, we don’t have the scripts yet, but as soon as we do, we’ll send them to you.’ So I was waiting for the scripts to come and they never did.”

In 2018, Jackson told the UK Meter“I think they are going to send us some scripts to see if we can help them.”

Still, Jackson stressed that he harbors no hard feelings toward the Amazon series and is looking forward to seeing it as a fan of the franchise.

“I’ll be watching,” he says. “I’m not the kind of person who wishes ill will. Making movies is hard enough. If someone makes a good movie or TV show, it’s something to celebrate. The only thing I look forward to is seeing him as a perfectly neutral viewer.” Jackson adds that Amazon is “betting the farm on Tolkien” given its massive $500 million budget for the show’s debut season.

Amazon Studios responded to Jackson’s comments with the following statement: “In pursuing the rights to our show, we were required to keep the series distinct and separate from the movies. We have the utmost respect for Peter Jackson and the Lord of the Rings movies and are delighted that you are looking forward to seeing them. the rings of power.”

Sources close to the project describe a complicated and sensitive backstory to the situation. First, that the studio has great respect for Jackson and that power rings showrunners JD Payne and Patrick McKay have privately attempted to pitch the filmmaker. But as the statement suggests, there were also legal concerns about keeping the movies (which are owned by Warner Bros.) and the TV show separate. There have also been executive changes during the time period in question, with former head of genre programming Sharon Tal Yguado, who one source described as an advocate of bringing Jackson onto the project, leaving the company in 2019. Perhaps even more crucially. , sources say the estate of author JRR Tolkien was against having Jackson on board. This should come as no surprise, as the estate was not involved in his films and Christopher Tolkien has. previously hit the trilogy in the press as “gutting” his father’s books, claiming that they turned his novels into action films for young people that lack “beauty and seriousness”. But the estate is involved with the series: Amazon paid the estate a staggering $250 million for the rights to make the show. All that said: one does not simply offer to send Peter Jackson a LOTR script and then leave the man hanging.

Moving on, Jackson was also asked if a movie studio would greenlight his trilogy today. The director says “probably not. … Not with a director like me and a studio that would risk his money for three movies,” he says.

As for the legacy of his trilogy, Jackson says, “If there was one thing we gave to the ongoing film community, [it’s] that we opened the CGI bag of tricks to have huge battle scenes.” That’s a bit of a modest answer considering epic fantasy shows like HBO. game of Thrones It probably never would have been greenlit if it weren’t for the huge box office and award success of its trilogy.

Jackson is also an awards contender this season for his acclaimed Beatles documentary. Returnwhich was nominated for five Emmy Awards.

The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power follows the forging of the original Rings of Power during the Second Age that allowed the Dark Lord Sauron to spread evil across Middle-earth. It is set thousands of years before the events of the Jackson trilogy. The show premieres on Prime Video on September 2.
Kim Masters contributed to this report.

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