Amazon, Warner Bros in Talks for LOTR Series Adaptation: Variety

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Post by Forest Shepherd Thu Mar 18, 2021 3:45 pm

Was Howe involved? Shippey certainly was, and that's the troubling one for me.

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Post by halfwise Thu Mar 18, 2021 3:53 pm

I'm hoping they bring Shippey back for consultation each season - we don't have details on where they were in mapping out the story when he left. It could be that the season was outline so they didn't need him anymore.

Yeah, Howe was involved. It's possible once again that all the major designing was done so they didn't need his constant presence anymore.

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Post by halfwise Thu Mar 18, 2021 4:43 pm

Once again I have other things to do, so here I am.

I feel that even if Amazon has access to 2nd age material outside of the appendices, they will avoid full storylines in Numenor until near the end, simply to avoid the need to keep developing characters as men die off.  We'll only see them as they make landings on Middle earth and interact with the Elves.  So my 5 season outline is as follows:

Season 1: start with prologue style recap of the War of Wrath, Elrond and Elros and the founding of Numenor.  Segue into the founding of Lindon and Eregion.  Start the story proper with the Elves of Eregion starting interchange with Moria.  Cover the construction of Barad-dur, Sauron being rejected in Lindon but making inroads into Eregion. Glimpses of Gil-Galad and Cirdan interacting the Numenorians.  Galadriel and Celeborn move to Lorien.  Season concludes with the forging of the Rings of Power.

Season 2: Sauron forges the One Ring.  War of Elves and Sauron, founding of Rivendell, season concludes with the arrival of the Numenorians and the defeat of Sauron.

Season 3: the first White Council. Galadriel and Celeborn go to Belfalas. Darkening of Numenor and turning away from the elven tongue (first of the long stories in Numenor).  Pelargir and Umbar founded . Appearance of the Nazgul to culminate the season. (the last two events are slightly out of order for dramatic effect, but just because the Nazgul appeared 100 years earlier doesn't mean we can't delay their first introduction in the story: we are given no details about their "appearance".)

Season 4: Set almost purely in Numenor.  Ar-Adunakhor takes the sceptre.  The Numenorean civil War with Gimilkhad, Tar-Palantir.  Birth of Isildur and Elendil.  Ar-Pharazon takes Sauron prisoner.  Grand Armada.  Season ends with destruction of Numenor.

Season 5: Founding of Gondor.  The capture of Minas Ithil.  The Grand Alliance.  Series ends with Isildur cutting off the Ring.

So that's how I would do it.


Last edited by halfwise on Thu Mar 18, 2021 4:52 pm; edited 1 time in total

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Post by Mrs Figg Thu Mar 18, 2021 4:46 pm

"Once again I have other things to do, so here I am."

Me too. Laughing only a 90,000 word thesis to finish, nothing too much.
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Post by Pettytyrant101 Fri Mar 19, 2021 2:17 am

{{ Still working out how'd I'd put together this for a tv show, but a question occurs in thinking about it the answer to which I dont know- where were the Seven, Nine and Three forged? The obvious answer would be Eregion, but would they have been in the elvish bit, or were they forged inside Moria which is right there and full of cunnnig dwarvishly made furnaces and smelters and the like? }}

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Post by Pettytyrant101 Fri Mar 19, 2021 3:38 am

{{ Ok first up, I said I thought making this in the first place was a bad idea, and that Id only do it if made to write it at gunpoint. Its still a bad idea, so I decided to approach from the view of what would be expected and suited to our current tv times.  As there is in my view no way to do a truly pure to the lore version. Which is why they shouldn't bother.
To this end the only way I can see of covering such a large space of history and event is to cheat and change much.
This includes moving events in the timeline closer together, moving people in the time line sometimes by a few generations or more. And pure invention to give some substance to what episodes would be about and to provide characters to follow throughout the story lines to make it coherent as a narrative on tv.
Ive tried to include as many characters as possible that people who had only seen the films would know to pander to them.
To meet modern tv expectations there are also written in opportunities to focus on female characters, struggles against male dominated society and criticism of Empire building, and some environmental stuff.
I don't approve of any of this of course, but I honestly think the task of adapting all the events of the second age into one long narrative based on such thin source material is all but impossible.
Nevertheless heres a rough outline of how Id do the First Series at least. Even though it would make me very crabbit.
I have gone for the seemingly favoured number of netflix episodes in a series 10. But I couldnt quite fit it in, so Ive gone for 10 and a big finale (or alternatively ep1&2 would be the pilot with 10 episodes following). They are numbered in pairs only because originally each was meant to be one episode, but then I realised there was too much material in each for a single episode, and rather than go back through it all and separate them out I just lumped them into parings of synopsis for 2 episodes at a time.




Ep 1&2- Start on Elrond and Elros. Arrival in Numenor. Elros choice to be be mortal and Elronds to be elven and Elros being crowned first King of Numenor.
We will also see the founding of the Grey Havens. This subplot will also be used to introduce Gil-Galad and the friendship between him and Numenor.
Also introduced in this will be a couple dwarves of Ered Luin who are going to join the dwarves growing in Moria, they will initially be the audiences eyes, seeing Moria, Eregion for the first time too. This story line will also be used to introduce some of the main elves beginning to settle Eregion, such as Celebrimbor. And on the dwarf side Durin III. It will focus on dwarves and elves on this second thread both to introduce the importance of the region and its peoples to the later forging of the Rings, and because both races, assuming we start with young dwarves, are long enough lived to cover the 400 year span on the main line. The purpose of this second line narratively will be to show at this time the two races get along well and are working in growing cooperation with each other despite hostilities going back to Doriath.
Along with Celebrimbor we will also meet Galadriel and Celeborn here and discover Celeborn dislikes dwarves because he blames them for the death of his uncle Thingol at the sacking of Doriath- he will represent the troubled side of the dwarf/elf relationship..
A third shorter thread will follow Treebeard and an Entwife as strife grows between male and female Ents over where to live and their differing love for forest and field.
Ends on the passing of Elros and his parting from Elrond.

Ep 3&4- Opens on the coronation of Tar-Vardimir, 2nd King of Numenor.
In Eregion a new character will be introduced, Annatar, attractive and young, but as a side almost background character introduced as remarkably talented, one of the best up and coming smiths of his generation. At some point in this episode we will see him making a piece of jewellery of astonishing beauty and qualities that will astound the others.
Also a growing sign of Sauron's return orcs are multiplying in the mountains, which will lead whilst travelling to the death of one of the now elderly dwarves from first episode. His funeral will be the last we see of those two particular dwarves. On the dwarf line going ahead Durin II will be main character.
The Ent-wives leave the Ents in search of lands to make their own.

In Numenor we will see that the new King now has a daughter, Tar-Ancalime. This will cover her childhood, her fathers absences at sea, her mothers scorn for men, and her only childhood friend Zamin. Meanwhile the Numeroreans fleets are visiting ME, and making new allegiances with the men there in generally friendly fashion and exchanging goods.
In Eregion Annatar is sent off on a mission to warn of a large band of orcs seen crossing the mountains eastward. But Galadriel has forebodings and believes misfortune is coming to Eregion, she chooses to take her daughter Celebrian and leave through Moria in secret with the help of the dwarves to the eastern side of the mountains, Celeborn refuses to go and chooses to remain in Eregion foreseeing no danger.
Annatar will run right into the orcs, who in response instead of killing him part to reveal a Fell Beast saddled and ready upon which Annatar sits and takes off.
Ep will end upon the reveal of Mordor and the building of the founding of Barad-Dur as upon his Fell Beast Annatar arrives and is greeted like a God by his minions and workers as his outer form shifts and changes into something dark and evil and Orodruin bursts into flame.

Ep 5&6- In this episode on Numenor we will follow Tar-Ancalime and her becoming the first Queen of Numenor after her father changing the rules of succession to grant it against opposition. And her increasing military focus with the Numenorean fleet in their visits to ME. Also introduce some naval characters here to follow on the expeditions to ME and who are increasingly hostile to the natives and arrogant, taking tribute and even slaves. Three of these characters will later be three of the Nine. We will see the first indication that the Dunlendings are being poorly treated by the Numenoreans.
Time jump of some years. Return to Gil-Galad and the arrival there of Annatar, older than before indicating we have moved ahead in time, but just as handsome and charming as before but with an air of more knowledge and wisdom. We will also be reintroduced to Elrond here.
Annatar demonstrates his abilities in forging by making the very first of the 'lesser rings' and offers to share his knowledge, claiming together they can use their combined powers and skills to cure sickness and stop the decay of the world, but Gil-Galad suspicious of him rejects the offer. In wrath Annatar leaves.
Back In Numenor the Queen is old and her eldest son is ready to take the throne so she chooses to pass on and die, Tar-Minastir becomes King of Numenor. One of our bad Numenoreans now councils the King in matters concerning their raids upon ME, making them increasingly raids for vast tracts of woodland and resources and labour to fuel their naval activities, and encouraging raids further afield southward along the coasts, headed by the other three ambitious Numeroreans destined to be Ringwraiths.
In Mordor there is a secret meeting of the people who will become the Nine- from the north Angband, from the east Khamul and from Numenor the advisor to the King and three others. They are all either nobles of their homelands or war lords in their homelands. The remainder though unnamed should consist of folk from Harad, a leader of the Dunlendings other local leaders or powers from east and south for rest. Sauron tells Khamul and the Haradrim their task has only just begun in the East and South and all the lands of men there who once worshipped Morgoth will return to them and rise in glory and wealth and power to conquer all ME in Morgoths name. Sauron is also dismissive of the reports of Numenor saying he is about undertake an act that will ensure his dominance and that Numenor is irrelevant in the face of it. He will give each of them power beyond their imagining and the gift of immortal existence if they will swear allegiance to him.
Ep will end on Annatar returning to Eregion and this time having his offer taken up by Celebrimbor and his elven smiths and he begins teaching them the ring making craft, making the remainder of the Lesser Rings.

Ep 7&8- In Eregion the Rings of Power will be forged. On the premise that only working together and in harmony can all the free folks heal the hurts of the world. The Seven first are given out to the dwarves, and nine after their forging Sauron takes them unbeknown to Celbrimbor who is meanwhile forging the Three alone.
Annatar then slips off taking the Nine with him and gives them to his choosen followers before he returns to Mordor where an amassed army of orcs awaits him before the now completed Barad-dur. Sauron enters Orodruin and forges the One Ring and puts its on claiming dominion over all.

Episode 9&10- Celebrimbor perceives Saurons will and the elves are saved and the Three hidden, sent out of Eregion at Galadriels urging to Keepers who can keep them safe and hidden. Galadriel gets given one of the Three.
Sauron leads his army from Mordor.
We now follow a group of Entwives, lead by Treebeards wife on their farms, Treebeard will make one last visit in an attempt to persuade her to return to the forests with him, but she refuses and they part.
In Eregion the elves prepare for war and ask the dwarves for their alliance if Sauron should come and send for help to Gil-Galad should their land be attacked. The Dwarves of Moria swear to stand by them.
In Numenor word comes from Gil-Galad of Saurons attempt to seize control through the Rings and that he may be plotting for war now. The King deliberates what to do. Eventually he orders a great increase in shipbuilding and preparations.
Saurons army destroy the homes of the ent-wives as it sweeps towards Eregion- the surviving Entwives flee further east.
In response to a call for aid from Eregion Gil-Galad sends forces led by Elrond.
Ep ends on Saurons arriving at Eriador with his army.

Episode 11- Big battle finale. Sauron lays waste to Eregion, Celebrimbor dies after the dwarves, faced with overwhelming orc numbers and with Durin unknowingly acting under the influence of the ring he bears closes the doors of Moria. The elves are wiped out, Eregion destroyed and Sauron victorious.
Numenor's navy and army arrives in force and join forces with Gil-gald's elves under Elrond and together they drive the orcs and Sauron back from Eregion. Sauron flees to Mordor.
But Eregion and the surrounding lands are destroyed. Elrond decides to take his elves north and founds Imladris as a refugee for the surviving elves of Eregion.
The King of Numenor makes the decision that Numenor has to have a permanent defence and military presence in ME and orders the beginning of the building and expansion of Numenorean Settlements and harbours lest Sauron should return to try again.
Treebeard and some of the Ents come looking for the Entwives but can find nothing but rumours they fled into the east to parts unknown.
In Mordor the top room in Barad-Dur lights up in fiery light as Sauron takes up his residence and Orodruin blazes.

End of series one. }}

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Post by Mrs Figg Fri Mar 19, 2021 1:08 pm

Entwife strife? Shocked
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Post by Forest Shepherd Fri Mar 19, 2021 1:23 pm

I like it, but I also know in my bones that the scale of the show will be oh so much smaller than that. "Bring me Game of Thrones", Baldy Bezos said, and GoT had characters that lasted throughout.

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Post by Pettytyrant101 Fri Mar 19, 2021 2:20 pm

{ I tried to keep it focused on characters who would last the entire time- elves are the obvious ones there- Elrond, Galadriel, Gil-Galad and the like all last throughout series 1. And Ive merged Durin II and III into one so they last through the first series.
Its only the men of Numenor who really change, and in those cases Ive tried to always have continuation by showing either the crowning of the new monarch or the transistion period itself to keep a continous narrative.
But it certainly one of the many problems with adapting a large time scale covering several generations.

I could for example easily forsee based on my own attempt that at end of series one rather than Numenor driving Sauron out of Eregion that Saurons invasion of Erigion would immediatly segway into the Last Alliance, and Ar-Pharazon would be King of Numenor not the earlier Tar-Minastir.
As in terms of adaptation there is redundancy in Sauron attacking getting driven out for a bit only to do it again and get driven back again.
The reason I didnt do that (part pure crabbit) is that its this temporary driving away of Sauron that gives motivation, and excuse for Numenor to go Empire expanding in ME- as series 2 would focus a lot on that and their taking of Umbar. }}


Last edited by Pettytyrant101 on Fri Mar 19, 2021 2:24 pm; edited 1 time in total

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Post by halfwise Fri Mar 19, 2021 2:22 pm

Wow, all the way to the war between Elves and Sauron in the first season! I take it the fall of Numenor and the story of Gondor will be two or three seasons each.

You write with the pen of a scriptwriter. Not sure the Tolkien Estate would like the time compression, but the dramatic advantage is clear.

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Post by Pettytyrant101 Fri Mar 19, 2021 2:58 pm

{{ Plan at moment, very roughly would be series 2 would focus on the rise of Numeor in ME- founding of cities, and the expansion ever south into Harad culminating in the taking of Umbar. Meanwhile Sauron would be using his controlled 9 to further strife between peoples- fuelling anti-Numenor sentiment among the Haradrim and the Dunlendings and the like, whilst using those placed in Numenor to push for ever more expansion and taking of territories, pursuing a divide and conquer strategy.
Series 4 would follow the rise of Ar-Pharazon as the peak of Numenorean power, but also arrogance. And end in the Last Alliance and the capture of Sauron.
Series 5 the Fall of Numenor, the attempt to take the Undying Lands and the destruction, ending on the founding of Gondor and Arnor.}}

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Post by halfwise Fri Mar 19, 2021 7:22 pm

You left out series 3. I think the founding of Gondor into the last alliance would take a whole series.

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Post by Pettytyrant101 Fri Mar 19, 2021 8:47 pm

{{So I did- never write a synopsis drunk! Actually if I was doing it Id cover quite a bit of the early Third Age too leading up to the collapse of Arnor, establishing the Rangers and including the arrival of the wizards to ME. And follow Gondor to the Stewards and the establishment of Rohan. Doing that what even allow an excuse for some Hobbits to be in it as you could follow the Stoors and the foundingof the Shire.
If the aim is to put all the pieces in place prior to events in TH and LotR's then I think youd have to go that far.}}

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Post by Pettytyrant101 Sat Mar 20, 2021 1:04 am

{revised outline for later series- Series 2 remains as outlined above.
Series 3 would cover rise of Ar-Pharazon, capture of Sauron downfall of Numenor.
Series 4 The establishment of Arnor and Gondor. It would end on the fall of Minas Ithil, the burning of the White Tree and Isildurs escape with a seedling.
Series 5 would be rather unique it would cover the forming of the Last alliance but the actual seige would take up half the series, given the seige lasts years. Consisting of the Battle of the Dagorlad, entry to Mordor, seige of Barad-Dur and the final confrontation culminating in the cutting of the Ring. }}

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Post by halfwise Sat Mar 20, 2021 12:24 pm

Quite a change from your first version which never had your above seasons 4 and 5. I think a whole season of the siege would be rather bleak, though.

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Post by Pettytyrant101 Sat Mar 20, 2021 1:45 pm

{{ Ah well in fairness I wrote the first one off the top of my head, drunk and sitting on the bog Nod
And I think the seige should be long and bleak, one of the many things I hate about PJ's version of the Last Alliance is the choreographed elves, making it look like it was just a bit of a stroll outside that day for a well practised excercise routine as opposed to being a brutal slog that lasted years and was devestating to both sides. The entire thing from Dagorlad on would basically have the bleakness and bruitallity of a serious WW1 drama/documnetary. }}

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Post by Mrs Figg Sat Mar 20, 2021 3:17 pm

Pettytyrant101 wrote:{{ Ah well in fairness I wrote the first one off the top of my head, drunk and sitting on the bog Nod
And I think the seige should be long and bleak, one of the many things I hate about PJ's version of the Last Alliance is the choreographed elves, making it look like it was just a bit of a stroll outside that day for a well practised excercise routine as opposed to being a brutal slog that lasted years and was devestating to both sides. The entire thing from Dagorlad on would basically have the bleakness and bruitallity of a serious WW1 drama/documnetary. }}

sitting on the bog?
some syrup of Figgs could help with that. pale affraid
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Post by halfwise Sat Mar 20, 2021 3:52 pm

{{{ Embarassed I'm not touching that one. }}}

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Post by Pettytyrant101 Sun Mar 21, 2021 4:07 pm

{{ Not sure I am either! But in good news I did make it off the bog...well slid down the side of it, same thing... drunken }}

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Post by chris63 Mon Mar 22, 2021 12:52 pm


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Post by halfwise Mon Mar 22, 2021 2:49 pm

Pettytyrant101 wrote:{{ Not sure I am either! But in good news I did make it off the bog...well slid down the side of it, same thing... drunken }}

Doesn't one slide into a bog rather than off a bog? It's not a toadstool.

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Post by halfwise Mon Mar 22, 2021 2:55 pm

Those two guys are certainly perky.  Taking it in bits.  Haven't zeroed in on where their accent is from.

Addendum: they're just chatting, don't have the insights and good guesses we've seen in other vids. I thought their laser focus on Numenor was off base until I checked back and saw that most of Petty's version is also set in Numenor. I disagree: you can't have the forging of the rings of power be a side story here. So I favor starting the story not long before Sauron charms his way into Eregion, then shifting the focus to Numenor later. Have episodes from Numenor become more and more frequent, but never lose touch with middle earth completely either.

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Post by Pettytyrant101 Mon Mar 22, 2021 7:15 pm

I checked back and saw that most of Petty's version is also set in Numenor...So I favor starting the story not long before Sauron charms his way into Eregion, then shifting the focus to Numenor later. Have episodes from Numenor become more and more frequent, but never lose touch with middle earth completely either.- Halfy

{{ I think my version does that- if you take the first episode the main Numenor part is the Men following the star to it and introducing Elrond and Elros- with benefit a lot of audience already know Elrond. And we see the founding of the Grey Havens, another familar location for the film viewers.  The main bulk though we follow the two dwarves- I envision them serving a similar purpose as R2D2 and C3PO  in the first twenty minutes of SW. And thats all ME Ered Luin and Eregion. And we get more familar faces with Galadriel and Celeborn. And then the Ent storyline, and another familar face, before ending with Elros passing. So we've jumped 400 years so we dont see the actual buildingof stuff in Numenor, by time we check back in thats all established.But Elros choice to be mortal, Elronds choice to be elven it is a good opportunity to introduce the difference between elves and mortals when they die which is key later in understanding Numenors attempt to seize the Undying Lands and all that follows.
But its majority ME set. We touch in on Numneor for mainly reasons of time keeping- as we can show how much time has passed by how old the actor looks. The Numenor focused episodes in terms of set there, are things like the rise of the first female Queen, or to establish someone who is going to be important in events taking place in ME, but those episodes are there also to fill out Numenor culture, beliefs ect so the viewer can see how they change over time and play into Saurons eventual ability to so easily corrupt them. And just as a break from the majority ME set epiosdes. Always good to give a change of scenario every so often.}}

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Post by halfwise Mon Mar 22, 2021 8:15 pm

I'm totally for trading back on forth in setting, but I think your original written description is somewhat different from what you had in your head. What's written seems strongly weighted towards Numenor from the second season on.

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Post by Pettytyrant101 Mon Mar 22, 2021 8:19 pm

{{ Yes but its Numenors effect on ME, not about Numenor, its not set there, its set along the coast of ME and into Harad. And the rest is set in Eregion/Moria/ Fangorn Forest as it was. It'd not need to check in on actual Numenor any more than in first series. Its nearly all set in ME.}}

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