Rumor: Amazon’s Lord of the Rings Could Have 20 Episode First Season

An interesting rumor is making the rounds about Amazon’s The Lord of the Rings series. In a recent interview with a German website (via /Film), Tolkien scholar Tom Shippey, who is currently working on the highly-anticipated show, revealed that the first season of the show will feature 20 episodes.

“Logically, you try to bundle all the scenes that take place in one location and film them so that you have it done and don’t have to return to that place several times,” he said. “But this also implies that everything has to be clear at the start of filming, you have to know the end. There’s supposed to be 20 episodes for the first season. So until they’ve decided what the end is going to be, they can’t start filming.”

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This would be out of the ordinary for Amazon or really most streaming TV shows, which average between 8 and 12 episodes per season. So keep some salt with your while on your journey to Middle-earth.

Speaking further about the series, Shippey said that there are questions about the Second Age that the series can try to answer.

“The Tolkien Estate will insist that the main shape of the Second Age is not altered,” he added. “Sauron invades Eriador, is forced back by a Númenorean expedition, is returns to Númenor. There he corrupts the Númenoreans and seduces them to break the ban of the Valar. All this, the course of history, must remain the same. But you can add new characters and ask a lot of questions, like: What has Sauron done in the meantime? Where was he after Morgoth was defeated? Theoretically, Amazon can answer these questions by inventing the answers, since Tolkien did not describe it. But it must not contradict anything which Tolkien did say. That’s what Amazon has to watch out for. It must be canonical, it is impossible to change the boundaries which Tolkien has created, it is necessary to remain “tolkienian.”

Shippey revealed also that apparently Amazon only has the rights to the Second Age, so it’s unclear whether there will be references at The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings or not, given that both stories take place in the Third Age.

Amazon’s Lord of The Rings doesn’t have an official release date yet. What do you think about Tom Shippey’s declarations? Let us know your thoughts in the comments section below.