Amazon Studios' 'Lord of the Rings' series will film in New Zealand

Ben Arnold
Contributor
Lord of the Rings (Credit: New Line)

Amazon's billion-dollar budget Lord of the Rings series will return to film in Middle Earth, it's been confirmed.

Or New Zealand, as it's also known.

“As we searched for the location in which we could bring to life the primordial beauty of the Second Age of Middle-earth, we knew we needed to find somewhere majestic, with pristine coasts, forests, and mountains, that also is a home to world-class sets, studios, and highly skilled and experienced craftspeople and other staff,” said showrunners and executive producers J.D. Payne and Patrick McKay.

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“And we’re happy that we are now able to officially confirm New Zealand as our home for our series based on stories from J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Lord of the Rings.

A general view of the Shire is seen at the Hobbiton Movie Set where Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit trilogies were filmed, 2015. (Photo by Alex Livesey - FIFA/FIFA via Getty Images)

“We are grateful to the people and the government of New Zealand and especially Auckland for supporting us during this pre-production phase.

“The abundant measure of Kiwi hospitality with which they have welcomed us has already made us feel right at home, and we are looking forward to deepening our partnership in the years to come.”

Peter Jackson filmed all his Lord of the Rings movies in the sweeping landscapes of New Zealand, making it the only real choice for the new chapters set to be produced by the streaming studio.

J.A. Bayona (Credit: Jimmy Olsen/Media Punch/IPX)

It's been confirmed that A Monster Calls and Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom director J.A. Bayona will direct the first two episodes of the series, while former Game of Thrones alumnus Bryan Cogman joined the production in May as an executive producer and creative consultant.

So far Amazon is being tight on other details, however.

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It's thought the series will be set in the era prior to Tolkien's Fellowship of the Ring books, that Jackson brought to the big screen.

So far, only Midsommar and The Revenant actor Will Poulter has been cast in a major role, while Australian actress Markella Kavenagh is also said to be in talks.

Spread over five series, with a reported budget of $250 million per season, it's set to land in 2021.