Look out, Marvel, DC, and Star Wars – there's another big franchise potentially waiting in the wings. According to The Hollywood Reporter (opens in new tab), "Warner Bros. hopes to turn Lord of the Rings into a Star Wars-like franchise."
The studio's CEO recently announced that Warner Bros. and New Line Cinema had made a multiyear deal to make new Lord of the Rings movies with Embracer Group, the company that owns the rights to certain elements of J.R.R. Tolkien's The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit novels.
These rights cover Tolkien's Third Age of Middle-earth, the period when Peter Jackson's movies were set, while Amazon's The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power series covers the less familiar Second Age.
So, what does it mean to have a "Star Wars-like franchise"? Well, Star Wars has made a huge leap into the small-screen in recent years, with series like The Mandalorian, Obi-Wan Kenobi, and Andor releasing on Disney Plus. There are plenty more on the way, too, including Ahsoka, starring Rosario Dawson as her character from The Mandalorian, and Skeleton Crew, which will star Jude Law.
This means we could see a similar expansion of The Lord of the Rings franchise into streaming TV shows on the Warner Bros.-owned HBO Max alongside new movies, although nothing has been confirmed yet.
Our next journey to Middle-earth will be on Prime Video for The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power season 2, which is likely to release sometime in 2024. While we wait, check out our guide to the other best new TV shows coming our way, this year and beyond.