Amazon's large-scale TV adaptation of The Lord Of The Rings has apparently finished filming in New Zealand. Director JA Bayona took to Instagram on December 22nd to reveal that he'd taken his "last photo in New Zealand" and that "he can't wait to be back" - heavily implying that the brunt of the work on filming for the series has been completed.
While of the people of New Zealand have done a pretty incredible job steering themselves through 2020 and the COVID-19 pandemic largely unscathed, many of the country's strict rules on who could and couldn't enter caused a number of delays for The Lord Of The Rings. It was only in July that the country granted "border exemptions" for certain international TV and film productions and work was able to continue in earnest.
"This is my last photo in New Zealand," the director wrote. "I have no words to thank this extraordinary land and its beautiful people for taking me in this last year and a half. My heart feels a little kiwi now and I can't wait to be back." I'm not jealous that Bayona got to spend 2020 in New Zealand. Nope. Not at all.
The show had reportedly finished filming its first two episodes as of 2019, and we already know that it'll be getting at least two seasons.. We can assume, then, that Bayona and the gang will be back in New Zealand before long to resume work on their new adventures in Middle-Earth. I might see if they need any runners so I can go with them.
What of the content of the show itself? Amazon's series won't be rehashing the events of the movies or books, which you'll probably be relieved to know. Instead, it offers prequel of sorts to the events of The Hobbit and The Lord Of The Rings. It'll be set during the Second Age, a 3,441-year period that covered a number of major events, including the forging of the One Ring, the first defeat of Sauron, and the origins of the Ringwraiths.
There's no release date for Amazon's The Lord Of The Rings just yet, but I'd expect that if filming has wrapped, we could at least expect to see a first trailer and get some substantial updates on the production in 2021. Watch this space.
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