LOTR: Rings of Power Already Has Five Seasons Planned

The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power showrunners reveal they’ve planned all five seasons. Excitingly, they also know “what [the] final shot of the last episode is going to be”. 

In an exclusive interview with Empire, showrunners J.D. Payne and Patrick McKay discussed the beginning-end storyline of The Rings of Power. They also hint at how “there are things in the first season that don’t pay off until season 5” and how J. R. R. Tolkien is still writing the script.

“The pressure would drive us insane if we didn’t feel like there was a story here that didn’t come from us. It comes from a bigger place,” says McKay. “It came from Tolkien and we’re just the stewards of it. We trust those ideas so deeply because they’re not ours. We’re custodians at best.” 


Read more about LOTR: Rings of Power

The Second Age

Much like Peter Jackson’s Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit trilogies, The Rings of Power will take place in Tolkien’s high-fantasy landscape, Middle Earth. However, the Amazon Studios series is set at a much earlier date – the Second Age.

Loosely based on the appendices of The Lord of the Rings, the show will therefore depict historical Second Age events. Expect to see the rise of the Dark Lord Sauron and the forging of the rings. In addition, these plot points will take place against epic backdrops like Mount Doom and the kingdom of Numenor.


While the plot itself remains fresh, it comes with a blessing from Tolkien himself. 

“It was like Tolkien put some stars in the sky and let us make out the constellations,” Payne says. “In his letters [particularly in one to his publisher], Tolkien talked about wanting to leave behind a mythology that ‘left scope for other minds and hands, wielding the tools of paint, music and drama’. We’re doing what Tolkien wanted.” 

Credit: Amazon

Amazon Studios

When Amazon Studios bought the television rights to The Lord of the Rings for $250 million in 2017, five seasons were contractually commissioned. It’s a rare occurrence that showrunners get to have such a large series to play with straight off the bat.


“The rights that Amazon bought were for a 50-hour show,” says Payne. “They knew from the beginning that was the size of the canvas – this was a big story with a clear beginning, middle and end.”

While we can only speculate what that “final shot” could be, we know that The Rings of Power is going to blow us away. With no chance of cancellations and five seasons planned, fans are ecstatic about what Payne, McKay and director J. A. Bayona will potentially bring to the table. 

The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power season one is set to premiere via Prime Video on September 2.


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Featured Image Credit: Amazon