Amazon has set a slew of creative execs for its forthcoming Lord of the Rings TV series including Eps from Game of Thrones, Breaking Bad and The Sopranos as well as former head of genre Sharon Tal Yguado.
This comes a year after setting feature writers JD Payne and Patrick McKay to develop and write the company’s high-profile adaptation of J.R.R. Tolkien’s classic, which was brought to life by Peter Jackson in his blockbuster movie franchise.
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Exec producers include Lindsey Weber (10 Cloverfield Lane), Bruce Richmond (Game of Thrones), Gene Kelly (Boardwalk Empire) and Tal Yguado as well as writer/executive producer Gennifer Hutchison (Breaking Bad); writer/executive producer Jason Cahill (The Sopranos) writer/executive producer Justin Doble (Stranger Things).
Consulting producers include Bryan Cogman (Game of Thrones) and Stephany Folsom (Toy Story 4), producer Ron Ames (The Aviator), writer/co-producer Helen Shang (Hannibal), and writing consultant Glenise Mullins.
They will join previously announced execs such as J.A. Bayona (Jurassic Park: Fallen Kingdom), who will direct the first two episodes and also serve as executive producer, alongside his partner Belén Atienza.
The SVOD service has found its costume designer in Kate Hawley (Suicide Squad), Academy Award-winning production designer Rick Heinrichs (Star Wars: The Last Jedi), Academy Award-winning visual effects supervisor Jason Smith (The Revenant), Tolkien scholar Tom Shippey and renowned illustrator/concept artist John Howe.
The Lord of the Rings series, which has a multi-season commitment in a rights deal with the Tolkien estate believed to be close to $250 million, is based on the fantasy novels by Tolkien. It will be produced by Amazon Studios in cooperation with the Tolkien Estate and Trust, HarperCollins and New Line Cinema, a division of Warner Bros. Entertainment, which produced the Peter Jackson movies. Set in Middle Earth, the TV series will explore new storylines preceding J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Fellowship of the Ring.
McKay and Payne said, “This team is our Fellowship – assembled from around the world, all walking the road together to try and accomplish something far greater than any of us could on our own. We feel humbled and extremely lucky to be surrounded by such inspiring and talented women and men.”
“As our journey into Middle-earth begins, we are in excellent hands with J.D. and Patrick at the helm, with this incredible team of talent that they’ve assembled,” added Jennifer Salke, Head of Amazon Studios. “The depth and breadth of the experience of this writing and production team is truly awesome, with a real respect for and knowledge of Tolkien lore. We’re so happy to have them on board and to see this exciting series start to come to life.”