One of Amazon’s most anticipated originals to date, a yet-unnamed Lord of the Rings original series, will officially debut on Prime Video on Friday, September 2nd, 2022.
Along with a premiere date, Amazon Studios released an official first image from the forthcoming series, which will be set in Middle-earth’s Second Age. The series will take place thousands of years before the events chronicled in J. R. R. Tolkien’s The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings books, and it will follow characters “both familiar and new, as they confront the long-feared re-emergence of evil to Middle-earth.”
The image release is tied to the series’s production wrap after filming in New Zealand. Fans quickly speculated that the series will be set in Valinor, as the image depicts what appear to be the Two Trees.
The untitled project is a huge investment by Amazon in its Prime Video streaming service. The series’s first season alone reportedly cost around $465 million to produce. For context about what a massive creative undertaking this series has been for Amazon Studios, the final season of Game of Thrones was reported to have cost as much as $15 million per episode (though its budget was originally around $5 million per episode).
The headlining cast of the series includes Cynthia Addai-Robinson, Robert Aramayo, Owain Arthur, Maxim Baldry, Nazanin Boniadi, Morfydd Clark, Ismael Cruz Córdova, Charles Edwards, Trystan Gravelle, Sir Lenny Henry, Ema Horvath, Markella Kavenagh, Joseph Mawle, Tyroe Muhafidin, Sophia Nomvete, Lloyd Owen, Megan Richards, Dylan Smith, Charlie Vickers, Leon Wadham, Benjamin Walker, Daniel Weyman, and Sara Zwangobani. Showrunners J.D. Payne and Patrick McKay are executive producing the show.
“As Bilbo says, ‘Now I think I am quite ready to go on another journey,’” Payne and McKay said in a joint statement. “Living and breathing Middle-earth these many months has been the adventure of a lifetime. We cannot wait for fans to have the chance to do so as well.”
The series will premiere in more than 240 territories and countries when it arrives on Prime Video next year.