NEW YORK (AFP): Multiple new “Lord of the Rings” films are on the way from Warner Bros, the Hollywood studio behind Peter Jackson’s blockbuster Oscar-winning trilogy said Thursday.
David Zaslav, CEO of parent group Warner Bros. Discovery, told an earnings calls that recently appointed studio chiefs Mike De Luca and Pam Abdy had struck an agreement to make more movies based on JRR Tolkien’s epic fantasy books.
“Today, I’m thrilled to announce that Mike and Pam signed a deal to make multiple Lord of the Rings movies,” he said.
“‘Lord of the Rings’ is one of the most iconic storytelling franchises of all time, and we’re so excited. Stay tuned for more to come on this front.”
Zaslav did not provide further details, but Jackson said in a statement to AFP that he and his collaborators have been kept “in the loop every step of the way.”
“We look forward to speaking with them further to hear their vision for the franchise moving forward,” Jackson, Fran Walsh and Philippa Boyens said.
No details were provided on which storylines or timelines from Tolkien’s sprawling books would provide the source material for the new films.
They will be developed by Warner subsidiary New Line Cinema, which made Jackson’s original trilogy.
Rival studio Amazon last September released the first season of its own television adaptation, “The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power.”
That series — a prequel to the “Lord of the Rings” books — is planned to run for five seasons, with a reported total cost of more than $1 billion.
The first season provided the Prime Video streaming platform its biggest premiere, with 25 million viewers on its first day, but received a lukewarm response from critics.
Jackson’s original three “Lord of the Rings” movies grossed nearly $3 billion at theaters, and won 17 Oscars, including best picture for 2003 trilogy finale “The Return of the King.”
They starred Elijah Wood, Ian McKellen, Viggo Mortensen and Cate Blanchett.
A subsequent trilogy based on Tolkien’s “The Hobbit” was also a massive box office hit, despite a poor critical response.