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Amazon names Lord of the Rings director

The Lord of the Rings was previously adapted as a mega-hit movie trilogy

Spanish filmmaker JA Bayona is set to direct the first two episodes of Amazon Studios’ forthcoming Lord of the Rings series.

Bayona, who is behind films including The Orphanage, Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom and The Impossible, will also serve as executive producer alongside his partner, Belén Atienza.

“The scope and breadth of JA’s world-building is exactly the right fit for our ambitions for The Lord of the Rings,” said Jennifer Salke, head of Amazon Studios. “He’s a passionate and collaborative director who has brought new stories to life with his multitalented producing partner, Belén.”

JD Payne and Patrick McKay, writers on the series, added: “We have been great admirers of JA’s work for years and know that his epic, cinematic and deeply heartfelt aesthetic is the perfect sensibility to bring Middle-earth to life anew.”

As well as his work on films, Bayona also directed the first two episodes of Showtime series Penny Dreadful.

Amazon Studios revealed plans to work on a multi-season series based on JRR Tolkien’s The Lord of the Rings fantasy novels in 2017, after it agreed a deal worth a reported US$250m to acquire global TV rights to the franchise.

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