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The One Ring Forums: Tolkien Topics: Middle-earth TV Series Discussion:
Why has it gone so quiet?
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Helcaraxe
The Shire

Jul 12, 2:10pm

Post #1 of 56 (3480 views)
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Why has it gone so quiet? Can't Post

I'm amazed that after the big deal of announcing the TV show that Amazon have been so circumspect with information on what is happening. I know they are probably trying to put together a writing and production team but with the deadline to begin set for 2019 (I think!), I can't understand why their marketing people haven't thrown out a few snippets. It doesn't bode well for the series if they don't try to captivate a potential audience even this early!! Its frustrating hearing nothing but a deathly silence.Unsure


Eruonen
Valinor


Jul 12, 2:43pm

Post #2 of 56 (3360 views)
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I don't think it is unusual at this stage to hear little about the development. [In reply to] Can't Post

I am sure they are busy developing plots and then scripts, scouting locations, tentative discussions with actors etc. We did have the interview not too long ago that gave a little bit of news.

I imagine they are all quite busy and actively working on the series but there is nothing substantive to report at this time. TV shows don't like to tip their hands as to what is coming. When it gets closer you will see some promo material.

I do wish that a "making of" is being shot as well. I find the appendices of more interest than the movies as time goes on.


Helcaraxe
The Shire

Jul 12, 3:30pm

Post #3 of 56 (3359 views)
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I guess I'm just pining!!! [In reply to] Can't Post

I agree. Its understandable enough in that it's early days but would love to see where they might be going with this. Hopefully they will be able to strike a happy medium between LOTR controlled violence and the more extreme GOT version. I would like to see a bit of realism to the fight scenes though. The nudity and bonking I can live without. An intimate, humping scene with Aragorn and Arwen would most definitely spoil the image!!!Frown


MoreMorgoth
The Shire

Jul 12, 6:32pm

Post #4 of 56 (3330 views)
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San Diego [In reply to] Can't Post

The big San Diego convention is next week and it is probable that some news will come out of that.


Otaku-sempai
Immortal


Jul 12, 7:16pm

Post #5 of 56 (3316 views)
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Production has to begin before the end of 2020 [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
I'm amazed that after the big deal of announcing the TV show that Amazon have been so circumspect with information on what is happening. I know they are probably trying to put together a writing and production team but with the deadline to begin set for 2019 (I think!), I can't understand why their marketing people haven't thrown out a few snippets. It doesn't bode well for the series if they don't try to captivate a potential audience even this early!! Its frustrating hearing nothing but a deathly silence.Unsure


Amazon has to begin production within two years. At this point we probably won't learn much more (if anything) until a showrunner and maybe a writing team is announced. The last big announcement was only a month ago.

"For a brief time I was here; and for a brief time I mattered." - Harlan Ellison

(This post was edited by Otaku-sempai on Jul 12, 7:18pm)


Petty Dwarf
Bree


Jul 13, 1:47am

Post #6 of 56 (3249 views)
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And now I need some industrial-strength brain bleach. Thanks. [In reply to] Can't Post

Seriously though, if that happens, I'm not watching. It would be a betrayal of Tolkien.

The probable reason they aren't announcing anything right now is that there isn't anything to announce. A lot of work goes into a TV show, and most of it is either spoiler-riffic (to coin a phrase) or just boring.

"No words were laid on stream or stone
When Durin woke and walked alone."


Darkstone
Immortal


Jul 14, 2:56am

Post #7 of 56 (3132 views)
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It's too quiet. [In reply to] Can't Post

They're up to something.

******************************************
"The Crack of Doom is a small thermal exhaust port, right below the main port. The shaft leads directly to the reactor system. A precise hit will start a chain reaction which should destroy Barad-dr."
-The Briefing of Elrond





uncle Iorlas
Bree


Jul 21, 6:43pm

Post #8 of 56 (2536 views)
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if you will indulge me in a story [In reply to] Can't Post

Once upon a time a mildly evil overlord called for submissions in what was to be the most expensive TV show of all time. One entrant was an established Hollywood screenwriter who took the extraordinary step of bringing his absolutely uncredentialed younger brother, a destitute roofer from Albany, NY, into the overlord's stronghold to pitch the show with him. Now the younger brother had no background in the industry, and barely any publications at all; indeed all he had to offer was one familial tie, a literature degree, and a lifelong devotion to an author. But these, for once, were the very gifts that were needed.

The brothers spent weeks knocking up a proposal, fielding radical changes from on high (chiefly the news that the overlord no longer wanted young Aragorn as originally requested, but to recount the creation of the rings of power--after two weeks spent lovingly laying out the ranger king's biography). And when the time came the rich brother sent the poor brother a plane ticket, spent a day making final adjustments with him in his palatial LA home, and bundled him into his Tesla to brace the overlord's minions in their Californian fastness. And they acquitted themselves well, in the end; the meeting went over two hours and could have gone another two, everybody seemed reluctant to leave, and when all was done they felt they stood fair to win.

That night they had a quiet celebration with some old friends, and the older brother talked a while about how things would go if they actually won: how a squad of strong writers would be hired and episodes assigned by the brothers to one or another, always keeping their favorite bits for themselves, and then the brothers would edit the drafts as it pleased them. How teams of fine artisans would swing into motion almost before the writing started, on every aspect of production. How they would have much to say about casting, about locations, about soundtrack. And he spoke a little about the money, which would start out at a ridiculous level for the poor brother, and after four or five years of success vault upward to a level that felt ridiculous even to the rich one. It was a glorious day. They had done well, undoubtedly; the TV people practically high-fived when they finally came to Gandalf's arrival by ship at the end of season five or six, and these are people who pride themselves on their poker face. The lifelong rapport of brothers who tweak storylines for fun anyway paid off; it was a stronger proposal than one writer would be. And their intensely nerdy charts, their poster-sized maps, their ability to quote the text, all bore fruit. They managed to say almost everything they'd wanted to. And somehow even the younger brother, who by rights should have been cowed all along, had come through with the easy confidence of an expert in the field. But he was, after all, that day. He knew the book well, could see the influences of Malory and Beowulf and Wilde in turn, knew the author's history. It was a fantasy come to life, in a way, as in the movie Pixels: the dream useless people have, of waking one day to find that their silly and obscure specialties, the lazy habits on which they have wasted thousands of hours, are suddenly the very skills on which the whole world turns.

The next day the brothers were told they were tied for first place with four bids left standing. But now--and this was a surprise--the process was to be handed over to the Tolkien estate. Handed over how? Would they read meeting transcripts, or be provided summaries by Amazon? There was no knowing. Perhaps two weeks went by before the brothers were told that only two contestants remained: themselves, and the writer of an award-winning recent feature in another genre. And the elder brother was to meet Tolkien's grandson Simon, alone.

After that weeks went by, during which some rumor broke about the story focusing on young Aragorn, which if true would mean the brothers had lost; but the older brother waved this off as baseless, saying rumors of this kind always arise and are usually months out of date at best. All the while the question stood at the toss of a coin. Be king of all things, or be nobody at all, for the younger brother. But after weeks more, the curious word came down that the estate had refused both bids hand the two powers were regrouping to begin again. This was followed before long by dark rumors that Peter Jackson had been wakened from his torpor and now threatened to bring the whole project under his dominion, as in olden days. But now there was no way to get at the truth of it.

There still remained a thread of foolish hope; as long as no one had been chosen, perhaps somehow the field would clear again and there would be another chance to make the case. And all the time the young brother kept taking notes, kept chewing over the now hopeless storylines, expanding them. It is a delightful sandbox to play in.

More recently, by which I mean just in the last day or so, it turns out that probably that news about the estate declining both top bids was just wrong, and most likely the other bid simply won. But it's a little hard to tell through all the telephone game. At any rate, that door is closed. The older brother moves on to other projects and the younger remains a roofer in upstate New York. Not a particularly good roofer.

If there is any moral to this story, it is that precious little of what any of us think we know about the forthcoming show is real and current. It's just too soon for any of us to be hearing anything yet.


Otaku-sempai
Immortal


Jul 21, 7:43pm

Post #9 of 56 (2525 views)
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Okay? [In reply to] Can't Post

I don't remember any point where a rumor about focusing on the Second Age and the forging of the Rings of Power seemed credible. From pretty much the start, it seemed likely the show would focus on the years between the Quest of Erebor and the War of the Ring.

Other than that, cool story. Cool

"For a brief time I was here; and for a brief time I mattered." - Harlan Ellison


uncle Iorlas
Bree


Jul 22, 12:57am

Post #10 of 56 (2486 views)
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Well, that's sort of my point. [In reply to] Can't Post

I never heard such a rumor either, but that's definitely what was front and center within Amazon at a certain point in time. But they were clearly waffling about it, too, and indeed the number one problem they voiced with our proposal was that it covered too long a span. It's perfectly plausible to me that they've turned back to Aragorn, though it isn't certain at all. We just don't know. Nor shall we, not yet.


MoreMorgoth
The Shire

Jul 22, 4:19pm

Post #11 of 56 (2394 views)
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nothing [In reply to] Can't Post

It looks like nothing has come out of the big San Diego ComicCon that was held over the past four days. And that makes one wonder just what exactly is going on and why has there been no news.


Otaku-sempai
Immortal


Jul 23, 12:47am

Post #12 of 56 (2150 views)
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Yeah... [In reply to] Can't Post

I wasn't expecting much news to come out of SDCC, but I thought that there might at least be an announcement concerning the showrunner(s) for Amazon's Middle-earth show. Well, maybe for NYCC.

"For a brief time I was here; and for a brief time I mattered." - Harlan Ellison


Helcaraxe
The Shire


Jul 23, 8:19am

Post #13 of 56 (2094 views)
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Rumours [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
I don't remember any point where a rumor about focusing on the Second Age and the forging of the Rings of Power seemed credible. From pretty much the start, it seemed likely the show would focus on the years between the Quest of Erebor and the War of the Ring.

Other than that, cool story. Cool


That is what I thought was going to be the original story. With all the GOT comparisons in scale, surely the second age was the obvious place to go to create a grand story still tied to LOTR through Sauron, Elrond, Isildur etc. Why they went this limited route with young Aragorn I'll never know! Seems like a wasted opportunity to me.


MoreMorgoth
The Shire

Jul 23, 11:12am

Post #14 of 56 (2073 views)
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report [In reply to] Can't Post

 Found this on the WETA collectors site in discussion about WETA product at San Diego

The posters name is White Hand

"I spoke in depth with Richard Taylor today at SDCC. He said that there has been absolutely zero contact from Amazon regarding the Tv series and he does not know what is happening with it any more than we do."





Otaku-sempai
Immortal


Jul 23, 2:26pm

Post #15 of 56 (2050 views)
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There was that. [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
That is what I thought was going to be the original story. With all the GOT comparisons in scale, surely the second age was the obvious place to go to create a grand story still tied to LOTR through Sauron, Elrond, Isildur etc. Why they went this limited route with young Aragorn I'll never know! Seems like a wasted opportunity to me.


Sure, but that was early on when no one knew anything and we had almost no official information at all except that the series was coming. Aragorn's early life was rich enough to use for an entire series; however we don't know yet that he is going to remain the focus beyond the first season. Each season could focus on a different story-arc with different characters. We just don't know yet.

"For a brief time I was here; and for a brief time I mattered." - Harlan Ellison


Otaku-sempai
Immortal


Jul 23, 2:32pm

Post #16 of 56 (2044 views)
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Thanks. [In reply to] Can't Post

That's informative, as rumors go, though it could use some confirmation. It also seems to contradict what we've been seeing about the Amazon production possibly using sets and props from the films. It also does not preclude the reports that Peter Jackson has at least been consulted though he might not be taking a direct hand in the show.

"For a brief time I was here; and for a brief time I mattered." - Harlan Ellison


uncle Iorlas
Bree


Jul 23, 2:47pm

Post #17 of 56 (2041 views)
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Not to harp on it [In reply to] Can't Post

I can tell you, though, that at one time this was the plan. The latter half of April or so. That's all I can say for sure. The rumors we hear out here are worth very nearly nothing.


uncle Iorlas
Bree


Jul 23, 2:50pm

Post #18 of 56 (2039 views)
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that said [In reply to] Can't Post

You vould easily get five or more good seasons out of Aragorn, too, especially if you give Arwen equal weight. If it were up to me I'd do five years of second age, five years Arwen and Aragorn, and then six on the trilogy proper. But alas, it is not up to me.


Otaku-sempai
Immortal


Jul 23, 3:09pm

Post #19 of 56 (2035 views)
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Corroboration? [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
I can tell you, though, that at one time this was the plan. The latter half of April or so. That's all I can say for sure. The rumors we hear out here are worth very nearly nothing.


Unfortunately I can find no reports here from April or otherwise that support this statement. And the initilal reports in November 2017 from Variety and other sources merely gave the vague statement that the show would be set before the events of The Fellowship of the Ring. Unless you can back up your claim I have to assume that you are confusing rumors for official press releases.


In Reply To
You vould easily get five or more good seasons out of Aragorn, too, especially if you give Arwen equal weight. If it were up to me I'd do five years of second age, five years Arwen and Aragorn, and then six on the trilogy proper. But alas, it is not up to me.


Thanks for the kind words about the potential for a focus on Aragorn. I don't know about giving Arwen equal weight in such a show or arc; she doesn't seem to be active enough and too much would have to be invented just to give her something to do. That sounds exactly like Peter Jackson's plan for having Arwen fight at the Battle of the Hornburg. The addition of her presence at the Ford of Bruinen was enough.

"For a brief time I was here; and for a brief time I mattered." - Harlan Ellison

(This post was edited by Otaku-sempai on Jul 23, 3:14pm)


Althoun
The Shire

Jul 23, 4:09pm

Post #20 of 56 (2010 views)
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Where did you get this info from? [In reply to] Can't Post

Iorlas, I am in the same boat as our friend Otaku in being rather bewildered about your source for this rumour regarding a Second Age - Fall of Numenor - Last Alliance premise for the show (based on the Appendices, I would presume?)

That was a HUGE post with an attention to detail that surprised me - but I'll be damned if I can figure out where it might have come from. If you made that story up, then you have quite the imagination.

The only rumour to come out at the start of this year and which was promoted by this very website, had to do with Young Aragorn.

Now, that rumour could very well have been mistaken (i.e. derived from only one draft proposal among others that the leaker mistook for an actual series order) but what evidence do we have to think so?

I also cannot find anything online about a Second Age setting for the show, although I myself thought that this would have been (by far) the most plausible route for Amazon to take...

Especially since the confirmed GoT series commissioned by HBO, which will be the main competition for Amazon's Middle-Earth show, is going to be set thousands of years before the events of the War of the Five Kings which forms the main storyline of ASOIAF/GoT in that fantasy world's "Dawn Age" (equivalent to Tolkien's First and Second Ages).

Since HBO had taken that bold, enterprising step with GRRM's legendarium, I had found Young Aragorn slightly mystifying (I mean, the Hobbit was already a prequel set in that same time period near to the events of LOTR, if you take the long view).

But unless you are privy to inside information that we are not, it looks like Young Aragorn remains the best bet. I mean, its the only semi-official rumour that any of us have heard from the outside looking in.


(This post was edited by Althoun on Jul 23, 4:18pm)


Althoun
The Shire

Jul 23, 4:36pm

Post #21 of 56 (2002 views)
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Meant to say Rings of Power [In reply to] Can't Post

Typo above, meant to say creation of Rings of Power (not Numenor). Just to clear up confusion!


uncle Iorlas
Bree


Jul 23, 4:50pm

Post #22 of 56 (1992 views)
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I'm sorry. I'm being unclear. [In reply to] Can't Post

No corroboration per se. The source is, on May 2, I was sitting in the room with Jennifer Salke and a few other minions, pitching the show. I'm the younger brother, the one with no business in Hollywood. I was just being goofy when I wrote that up in third person, sorry. I thought it'd be more obvious.

I had a Hollywood adventure and almost ruled the world, but didn't win. And one of the smaller lessons I learned along the way is that the rumors you hear are generally complete bunk. (Including me, really; what I'm telling you is true, but it's also months out of date and limited to the pov of one screwball bit player.)


uncle Iorlas
Bree


Jul 23, 4:54pm

Post #23 of 56 (1983 views)
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I mean [In reply to] Can't Post

technically the source for the second age (more the story of Eregion than the Alliance, but they're difficult to separate) was my brother's agent reporting to him from Amazon weeks prior, cos that's how Hollywood does things, but you get my point. And yes, it was young Aragorn previously, and may well be that again now.)


Otaku-sempai
Immortal


Jul 23, 5:11pm

Post #24 of 56 (1979 views)
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Okay! [In reply to] Can't Post

I can well believe that a Second Age setting for the series was pitched to and seriously considered by Salke and her colleagues. However, it doesn't seem to have gone very far as the discussion seems to have remained behind closed doors. It might still prove to be an arc that might appear later, either in a later season of the show or as a spin-off. The biggest problem with a story in the Second Age is that many of the characters are little more than names in the context of a long history--names not invested much in terms of description or personality. On the other hand, this is a problem with supporting characters in any version of this series other than a straight-up retelling of the War of the Ring. And many such supporting characters would have to be invented from the name to the last detail.

I, for one, do really appreciate the insight you've been able to provide into the creative process for this show!

"For a brief time I was here; and for a brief time I mattered." - Harlan Ellison

(This post was edited by Otaku-sempai on Jul 23, 5:13pm)


Althoun
The Shire

Jul 23, 5:24pm

Post #25 of 56 (1969 views)
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Amazing insight [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
No corroboration per se. The source is, on May 2, I was sitting in the room with Jennifer Salke and a few other minions, pitching the show. I'm the younger brother, the one with no business in Hollywood. I was just being goofy when I wrote that up in third person, sorry. I thought it'd be more obvious.

I had a Hollywood adventure and almost ruled the world, but didn't win. And one of the smaller lessons I learned along the way is that the rumors you hear are generally complete bunk. (Including me, really; what I'm telling you is true, but it's also months out of date and limited to the pov of one screwball bit player.)


My sincere apologies Iorlas - I hadn't realised you were referring to yourself in the third person.

I guess the reason I didn't click is that it just seemed unlikely to me in the extreme that someone involved in making an actual pitch for a series order/contender premise would be posting here in the forum.

I thought you were joking at first...but the sheer degree of detail and insight that you were able to provide has been illuminating and I appreciate it greatly. But wow, I'm sorry things didn't turn out the way you had hoped and anticipated. How many people can hold their hands up and say they had the chance to take part in something like that, though?

You should feel pride, nothing else.

Are you allowed to post publicly about this?

Also, if you don't mind me asking, did anything set in Numenor around the time of the Fall and Last Alliance get pitched? That's a fairly do-able time frame for five seasons. Indeed, I speculated a few months back how it might have been done:

http://newboards.theonering.net/forum/gforum/perl/gforum.cgi?post=943287;search_string=Numenor;#943287

To me, this setting would have provided the most epic potential and also scope for court intrigue.

But Eregion and the creation of the Rings of Power would have been amazing...Anything Second Age, really.

I'm still not persuaded by Young Aragorn. A number of fans online were a little "unimpressed" by the idea, so it doesn't surprise me that Amazon might have taken stock of this and looked to the Second Age temporarily (before reverting back possibly?)

And, I take it then that Amazon followed a similar procedure to the one adopted by HBO for the GoT prequels (i.e. a kind of competition among screenwriters bidding for the winning proposal).


(This post was edited by Althoun on Jul 23, 5:31pm)

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