Because nothing is sacred, and apparently Peter Jackson’s multi-Academy Award-winning Lord of the Rings trilogy wasn’t enough.

Amazon has made a multi-season production commitment to a television adaptation of J.R.R. Tolkien’s fantasy epic. This marks a major deal, as they have secured one of the biggest brands in pop culture, for what will no doubt be one of the most expensive shows on ever made.

However, things are not what they seem. The series will actually explore the story before the events of The Fellowship of the Ring, so the war to destroy the One Ring that we saw in Peter Jackson’s trilogy will not be told in the TV version. This means that we will either see the story before The Hobbit, or what happened between The Hobbit and Lord of the Rings.

Amazon’s deal also includes the potential for a spinoff.

Matt Galsor, a representative from the Tolkien Estate, and HarperCollins, stated: “We are delighted that Amazon, with its longstanding commitment to literature, is the home of the first-ever multi-season television series for The Lord of the Rings. Sharon and the team at Amazon Studios have exceptional ideas to bring to the screen previously unexplored stories based on J.R.R. Tolkien’s original writings.”

This deal comes as HBO prepares to conclude their wildly successful fantasy series, Game of Thrones, set to finish in 2019. And while it has been said that Amazon’s Lord of the Rings adaptation, and HBO’s Game of Thrones adaptation are face the same challenge of adapting beloved stories – but this isn’t really true, as Lord of the Rings has already had one incredibly successful adaptation, so the real issue with this one is how Amazon plan to separate this one from Jackson’s – especially if they feature the same characters.

For instance, who would play Gandalf, if not Ian McKellen? And why would we want to see anyone else?

As yet, there’s no cast attached, or a premiere date, but the series will eventually stream on Amazon Prime.

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