Deep in the bowels of The Hollywood Reporter‘s sprawling profile of The Rings of Power showrunners Patrick McKay and J.D. Payne lies a curious tidbit about how all the majors were promising comically large checks to the Tolkien Estate if they could be the ones to bring further Lord of the Rings projects to life. HBO Max wanted to take everyone back to Middle-Earth, McKay and Payne spoke Elvish during their pitch on behalf of Amazon, and Netflix allegedly offered the most money and the most frightening vision.
As the feature, written by James Hibberd, states:
Netflix pitched doing several shows, such as a Gandalf series and an Aragorn drama. “They took the Marvel approach,” said one insider to the talks, “and that completely freaked out the estate.”
Thus, if that insider has it right, this is one of those rare moments where the biggest number didn’t win the day. It’s also one of those moments where attempting to create an expanded universe was actually balked at. Regardless of where you come down on Amazon’s concept of taking us all back in time long before Frodo got the ring, it’s difficult to imagine a Netflix version that wasn’t algorithmed into the ground. It’s hard to judge too harshly without knowing more, but those two concepts feel wholly uninspired.
On the other hand, no one had the courage to pitch a Tom Bombadil series, and we’re all worse off for it.
(via The Hollywood Reporter)