HBO reportedly pitched a 'Lord of the Rings' series remaking the movies, but the Tolkien estate passed — even though Christopher Tolkien once said the film trilogy 'eviscerated' his father's books

HBO reportedly pitched a 'Lord of the Rings' series remaking the movies, but the Tolkien estate passed — even though Christopher Tolkien once said the film trilogy 'eviscerated' his father's books
lord of the rings
New Line Cinema
  • HBO pitched the Tolkien estate on a "Lord of the Rings" TV series, according to The Hollywood Reporter.

  • It would have retold the story depicted in the film trilogy.

  • The estate passed, even though it's had its issues with the movies.

HBO has its own hit fantasy TV franchise with "Game of Thrones," but it reportedly wanted one more.

The premium cable network pitched the Tolkien estate on a "Lord of the Rings" TV series that would have told the "Third Age" of Middle-earth — essentially re-telling the story depicted in the film trilogy, according to The Hollywood Reporter.

The estate passed because it didn't want to retread familiar ground, even though it has its "gripes" with the movies, according to THR.

For instance, Christopher Tolkien — the son of "Lord of the Rings" author JRR Tolkien — said in a 2012 interview with the French news outlet Le Monde that the movies "eviscerated the book by making it an action movie for young people aged 15 to 25."

The film trilogy, directed by Peter Jackson, was a massive success, grossing $3 billion worldwide combined. The third film, "The Return of the King," swept the Oscars, including wins for best picture and best director.

Neither HBO or the Tolkien estate immediately returned requests for comment from Insider.

Netflix also pitched the Tolkien estate on "Lord of the Rings" shows, including ones about Aragorn and Gandalf, according to THR. But the Marvel-like approach "completely freaked out" the estate, a source told THR.

Amazon ultimately won the bidding war, and its "Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power" is currently streaming — as is HBO's "Game of Thrones" prequel, "House of the Dragon."

THR said that 12.5 million viewers in the US watched the two-episode premiere of "The Rings of Power" in its first weekend, a solid debut. But the show has faced growing pains, such as harsh audience reaction.

Amazon's plan is to tell the "Second Age" of Middle-earth — taking place thousands of years before the events of the book and film trilogies — over the course of five seasons.

Read the original article on Business Insider