Amazon is going all in on its upcoming Lord of the Rings series, which will reportedly run for five seasons and “explore storylines preceding The Fellowship of the Ring,“ including, some say, a young Aragorn. It’s also been widely rumored to boast a budget of $1 billion, which is enough to make Peter Jackson’s six Tolkien adaptations look teensy in comparison. Speaking of Jackson, it’s been unclear up to this point as to whether or not he’d be involved in the series beyond the “dialogue” it’s said his lawyer started between he and Amazon last year. Now, we finally have an answer — but it’s a little complicated.
Jackson commented on the series to French outlet AlloCiné earlier this week, saying, “I’m not involved at all in the Lord of the Rings series.” He continued, “I understand how my name could come up, but there is nothing happening with me on this project.”
In a subsequent interview with IGN’s German site, however, Jackson revised his comments. Saying that “[Amazon] has very good intentions with it all,” he asserts that he “would not want to be the one responsible for the entire TV series.” What he is doing, he says, is helping to put together “the creative team.”
So, he’s sorta involved?
Here’s the full quote, translated from German:
“I had a phone conversation with Amazon on that one — I think that was over a year ago and it sounded like they were doing the right thing [with the show], they have very good intentions with it, it all sounds very fascinating and exciting. However, I would not want to be the one responsible for the entire TV series, simply because I’ve never been responsible for a [long-term] series like this before in my life. So it would not be very smart if I took on the role of showrunner. What I’m actually doing right now is putting the creative team [behind the series] together. “
AlloCiné also asked Jackson about whether or not he’s considering the possibility of directing a superhero movie in the DC Extended Universe, a rumor he also shot down. “That’s not true. I had no discussions about that,” Jackson said. “I’m not a fan of comics, I’ve never read any, so I’m not particularly interested in adapting one for cinema. That’s not true at all. I’m not involved in any DC film or Lord of The Rings series but I’m ok with it, I have plenty other projects that keep me busy.”
One of the projects is this December’s adaptation of Philip Reeve’s novel Mortal Engines. Jackson is producing the film in addition to having written the script with Fran Walsh and Philippa Boyens. Christian Rivers, Jackson’s longtime storyboard artist and visual effects collaborator, is directing.