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'The Lord of the Rings': A growing evil threatens Middle-earth in trailer for 'The Rings of Power'

The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power ventures onto Prime Video Friday, Sep. 2.

By Josh Weiss
The Rings of Power AMAZON PRESS

The official trailer for Amazon's The Rings of Power is such a feast for the eyes, that some Hobbits would probably consider it a suitable replacement for second breakfast. Our best look at the Lord of the Rings-inspired series so far, this two-and-a-half minute collection of footage thrusts Tolkien fans back into the warm embrace of Middle-earth, a sprawling fantasy realm occupied by forest-dwelling Elves, mining Dwarves, agrarian Men, and big-toed Harfoots (distant ancestors of Hobbits).

Set a few thousand years before Frodo and the other members of the Fellowship embark on an unexpected journey to toss the One Ring into the fires of Mount Doom, the show unfolds against the backdrop of relative peace throughout the land. We use the term "relative" because a great evil threatens to upend the status quo and many individuals (like Robert Aramayo's Elrond) would rather bury their heads in the sand than prepare for the coming war against a villain we all know to be Sauron. Only a young Galadriel (Morfydd Clark) seems to grasp the enormity of the struggle yet to come.

Benjamin Walker (High King Gil-galad), Sara Zwangobani (Marigold Brandyfoot), Markella Kavenagh (Elanor ‘Nori’ Brandyfoot), Megan Richards (Poppy Proudfellow), Sir Lenny Henry (Sadoc Burrows), Daniel Weyman (The Stranger), Peter Mullan (King Durin III), Owain Arthur (Prince Durin IV), Charlie Vickers (Halbrand), and Ismael Cruz Córdova (Arondir), Maxim Baldry (Isildur), Lloyd Owen (Elendil), Trystan Gravelle (Pharazôn), Cynthia Addai-Robinson (Queen Regent Míriel), Leon Wadham (Kemen), and Ema Horvath (Eärien) co-star.

Check out the trailer below: 

Based on the lengthy appendices found at the end of The Return of the King novel, The Rings of Power is set to be one of the most expensive — if not the most expensive — television projects in the history of the medium (the first season alone ran up a tab of almost $500 million). When all is said and done (a five-season plan is already in place), Amazon will have spent around $1 billion. That's a lot of lembas bread.

"We even know what our final shot of the last episode is going to be," co-showrunner and executive producer J.D. Payne teased last month. "The rights that Amazon bought were for a 50-hour show. They knew from the beginning that was the size of the canvas — this was a big story with a clear beginning, middle, and end. There are things in the first season that don't pay off until Season 5."

"We didn't want to do the TV version of Lord of the Rings," added fellow showrunner and EP, Patrick McKay, while on the subject of the Oscar-winning films directed by Peter Jackson. "We wanted to do a story in Middle-earth that deserves its own space on the shelf alongside the novels and films ... Anyone approaching Lord of the Rings onscreen would be wrong not to think about how wonderfully right [Jackson] got so much of it. But we're admirers from afar, that's it. The Rings of Power doesn't try to compete with him."

Lindsey Weber, Callum Greene, J.A. Bayona, Belén Atienza, Justin Doble, Jason Cahill, Gennifer Hutchison, Bruce Richmond, and Sharon Tal Yguado are executive producers alongside McKay and Payne. Ron Ames and Christopher Newman serve a producers while Wayne Che Yip occupies the role of co-executive producer and director. Bayona and Charlotte Brändström also directed episodes.

The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power hits Prime Video Friday, Sep. 2.

Looking for some fantasy content to tide you over for the next four months? Click here for our list of the best fantasy films available on Peacock.