August 19, 2022

Prime Video’s new fantasy series, The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power, is adapted from the writings of J.R.R. Tolkien and debuts on September 22, 2022.

Hollywood is gearing up for San Diego Comic-Con next week—the first in-person version of the hugely popular and influential convention since the pandemic hit. Prime Video decided this was the perfect time to release a new, nearly two-and-a-half-minute teaser trailer for its upcoming series, The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power. It feels very much in the spirit of J.R.R. Tolkien’s novels and Peter Jackson’s classic film trilogy.

The first teaser for the new eight-part series landed in February during the Super Bowl and gave us some eye-popping views of the quality world-building we can expect. Per the official description:

This epic drama is set thousands of years before the events of J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings, and will take viewers back to an era in which great powers were forged, kingdoms rose to glory and fell to ruin, unlikely heroes were tested, hope hung by the finest of threads, and the greatest villain that ever flowed from Tolkien’s pen threatened to cover all the world in darkness. Beginning in a time of relative peace, the series follows an ensemble cast of characters, both familiar and new, as they confront the long-feared re-emergence of evil to Middle-earth. From the darkest depths of the Misty Mountains, to the majestic forests of the elf-capital of Lindon, to the breathtaking island kingdom of Númenor, to the furthest reaches of the map, these kingdoms and characters will carve out legacies that live on long after they are gone.

The large ensemble cast includes Morfydd Clark as a young Galadriel, “now a hardscrabble warrior leading the Northern Armies,” who is determined to hunt down her brother’s killer. She ends up adrift at sea with a new character named Halbrand (Charles Vickers). All we know about him is that he is “running from his past.” Charles Edwards plays Celebrimbor, whom hardcore LOTR fans will recognize as the elven smith who forged the legendary rings.

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Robert Aramayo plays a younger version of Elrond—”a canny young elven architect and politician.” (Aramayo also played the young Eddard Stark on Game of Thrones.) And Maxim Baldry will play the infamous Isildur, ancestor of Aragorn, who eventually defeated Sauron but fell victim to the One Ring’s corrupting power. 

Among other new characters, Sophia Nomvete plays the dwarven Princess Disa, and Orwain Arthur plays Prince Durin IV, but there’s no indication of what their relationship might be. Ismael Cruz Cordova plays a silvan elf named Arondir, and Nazanin Boniadi plays his love interest, Bronwyn, a single mom described as “a human village healer.”

There’s also a breed of hobbits known as the Harfoots, who mostly try to stay hidden and keep to themselves. But two curious young hobbits, Poppy Proudfellow and Nori Brandyfoot (played by Megan Richard and Markella Kavenagh, respectively), are more adventurous and somehow encounter “a mysterious lost man whose origin promises to be one of the show’s enticing questions.” That’s probably The Stranger (Daniel Weyman). Other characters include the dwarf King Durin III (Peter Mullan). The streaming platform has not yet revealed who will be playing Sauron.