The Rings of Power may have started production on its second season this week, but that doesn’t mean that we’ll be seeing it anytime soon. Season 1 took 18 months to film, and while some of that can likely be attributed to the struggles of filming during the height of the Covid-19 pandemic, it also makes sense given how extensive the production process has to be for a story of this magnitude.
When asked if we could expect to see The Rings of Power season 2 in 2023, the head of Amazon Studios, Jennifer Salke, told Variety that “We want the shortest time possible between seasons, but we want to keep the bar just as high. So it’ll take what it takes. But there’s been some urgency around moving quickly, which is why these guys have been writing all through their hiatus. We’re moving fast.” And while that wasn’t a clear answer on how long the production of season 2 will take or when we will get to see it, it seems as though she, and the series showrunners, are prepared to take their time to do the story justice.
In an interview with The Hollywood Reporter, The Rings of Power showrunner Patrick McKay said that he and fellow showrunner J.D. Payne expect to work on season 2 for “another couple years.” Which is no surprise seeing as their goals for season 2 are to be “bigger and better” on “every level … by an order of magnitude.” How exactly season 2 will be bigger or better is yet to be determined, but it’s nice to know that this team isn’t looking to diminish the quality or scale of the show just to get it out into the world faster.
Given that Amazon Studios essentially committed to five seasons of the series from the beginning, it makes sense that the creative forces behind The Rings of Power would feel comfortable taking their time. When asked about the massive budget for the series, Salke partially justified it by saying that Amazon Studios is “building infrastructure for five seasons” and that they’re effectively “building a small city” to produce this show. According to THR who toured The Rings of Power’s new U.K. set while interviewing Payne and McKay, the season 2 set even has its own blacksmith and hearth to make prop weapons. McKay says that “the entire making of this show has been a massive learning experience for everyone involved.” While they’ve learned a lot from the production of season 1 that will likely help things run smoother, and potentially faster, they also know that the stakes are still high – even without the threat of cancellation looming menacingly overhead.
Despite the amount of money that Amazon has invested in this series, McKay remains adamant that “[The Rings of Power] is the most earnest production. This is not a paycheck job for anybody. This is a labor of love.” So while season 2 probably won’t be on our screens for a while, it sounds like the creative team wants to take its time to get it right. They appear to be in this for the long haul, regardless of the criticism directed toward the first season.
The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power season 1 is streaming now on Amazon Prime Video.