Stop with the fallout already!

The world is changed. I feel it in the water. I feel it on Earth. I feel it in the air. Peter Jackson’s the Lord of the Rings The trilogy, my favorite cinematic property, is slowly transforming into another cursed cinematic universe that will haunt me with new episodes of decreasing quality until the day I die. I mean, seriously, who in Galadriel’s name actually wants a whole new movie series built around Gollum?!

The tragic news hit Middle-earth on Thursday: according to VarietyWarner Bros., which apparently intends to milk this beloved franchise until it’s drier than Frodo’s skin by the end of Return of the king-is currently working on a new series of films built around Andy Serkis’ shifty-eyed character. The first is expected to be released in 2026. In the words of Smeagol himself: “AAAAGH! …You’re ruining everything!

The working title of the first of these films is Lord of the Rings: The Hunt for Gollum, which is actually quite funny because a 2009 fan film already adapted this book with the exact same title. (Gollum was also the subject of a terrible video game last year, so it seems like we’re really scraping the bottom of the barrel here.) Serkis will both direct and play, according to Varietyand he will also executive produce alongside Ken Kamins and Jonathan Cavendish of The Imaginarium.

No offense to any of these guys, but I just can’t understand who’s craving more LotR content after six films and a very expensive failure of a television series. (Remember how Amazon reportedly spent $715 million on its 2022 the Lord of the Rings series The Rings of Power, only for him to fall flat on his elven face? Why are we still doing this?!)

In an earnings conference call Thursday, Warner Bros. Discovery and industry Sauron David Zaslav have reportedly assured everyone that Peter Jackson and his fellow original trilogy masterminds, Fran Walsh and Philippa Boyens, “will be involved every step of the way” for these new films. Then again, Jackson also led the Hobbit prequels from the 2010s, and frankly, the only aspect of those films that I continue to enjoy is Lee Pace’s excellently committed performance as Thranduil the Elvenking. Sorry, not sorry!

As absurd as this news may seem, we knew it was coming for a while; Warner Bros. first announced plans last February to create more films inspired by the work of JRR Tolkein. In this intellectual property-driven era of Hollywood, almost every major franchise gets the cinematic universe treatment, Star Wars has Harry Potter (the latter has its own series adaptation on the way from Warners as we speak). All this to say that it’s normal.

Yet, as someone who loved Star Wars and can now barely muster the energy to watch the latest entries in a seemingly endless stream of Lucasfilm series, and who watches the original anymore? the Lord of the Rings trilogy every Thanksgiving, news of these new Gollum films (Gollum movies!?!) I feel more exhausted than ever. Shall we marvel at the Shire? And what’s next: a limited series on entities? A prequel series detailing the creation of Uruk-hai? Let me stop now before some Warner executive gets any ideas…

All of this is to say that, as frustrating as this development may be, it is also, unfortunately, normal. That said, if anyone brings together a community of nine intrepid LotR If you’re a fan of marching to Zaslav’s office – and all over the world – against the offices of uninspired movie directors – feel free to send me an email.