Elijah Wood has a few thoughts and a little advice for the new Lord of the Rings movies in development at Warner Bros.
It’s been twenty years since Peter Jackson’s Lord of the Rings trilogy, and the movies still stand as some of the best around, but Warner Bros. is ready to head back to Middle-earth. It was announced in February that the studio has begun developing new Lord of the Rings movies, and original star Elijah Wood told GQ that he’s cautiously excited by the projects.
“I’m fascinated and I’m excited,Elijah Wood said. “I hope it’s good. I’m surprised—I don’t know why I’m surprised because, of course there would be more movies.“Wood continued,”Obviously at the core of that, is a desire to make a lot of money. It’s not that a bunch of executives are like, ‘Let’s make really awesome art.’ And, again, not begrudging anybody because, of course, it is commerce. But great art can come from commerce. So those two things are not mutually exclusive.“
However, Elijah Wood has some advice for those developing these new Lord of the Rings movies — don’t make it about the money. “Lord of the Rings didn’t come out of that place,” he said. “It came out of a passion for these books and wanting to see them realized. And I hope that that is ultimately what will drive everything forward with whatever these subsequent movies are. I just hope that it’s the same motivating factor at its core, whenever they hire a screenwriter and a filmmaker—that it is with reverence for Tolkien’s material and enthusiasm to explore it.“
While money might not have been a significant factor in the beginning, that obviously changed with the original Lord of the Rings trilogy became so successful. Combined with The Hobbit trilogy, which arrived nearly a decade later, the Middle-earth franchise has grossed nearly $6 billion worldwide, so the only surprise is that it took them this long to come back for more.
In a statement when the new movies were first announced, Warner Bros. Pictures Group co-chairs and CEOs Michael De Luca and Pam Abdy said, “Twenty years ago, New Line took an unprecedented leap of faith to realize the incredible stories, characters and world of The Lord of the Rings on the big screen. The result was a landmark series of films that have been embraced by generations of fans. But for all the scope and detail lovingly packed into the two trilogies, the vast, complex and dazzling universe dreamed up by JRR Tolkien remains largely unexplored on film. The opportunity to invite fans deeper into the cinematic world of Middle-earth is an honor, and we are excited to partner with Middle-earth Enterprises and Embracer on this adventure.”
Elijah Wood can currently be seen in the second season of Yellowjackets on Showtime. You can check out a review of the new season from our own Alex Maidy right here.