LOTR Rings of Power Episode 1 | Release Date, Cast, and Everything We Know

A massive undertaking, this could be Prime Video's biggest show yet.

by J.R. Waugh

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The Lord of the Rings is the most influential book series on modern iterations of fantasy storytelling, so it’s no surprise that an Amazon Prime Video adaptation of a yet-untold saga for Middle Earth is an exciting, yet risky prospect.  One thing is for sure though, it’s incredibly exciting to get to see the story of Númenor, a powerful former kingdom of men only alluded to in previous adaptations, as well as the forging of the Rings of Power including the rise of Sauron, setting the stage for Lord of the Rings. Read on for our coverage of LOTR Rings of Power Episode 1 | Release Date, Cast, and Everything We Know!

LOTR Rings of Power Episode 1 | Release Date

The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power will premiere on September 1, 2022, at 9 PM ET, on Amazon Prime Video. Episode 1 will be titled ‘Shadow of the Past’ and be directed by J.A. Bayona. As of this writing, the series has at least a 5-season commitment, costing Amazon approximately $1 billion to produce, making it the most expensive television series ever made. It’s certainly conceivable, given it will be an expensive endeavor, recreating kingdoms of Middle Earth we’ve never even seen, as well as some spectacular battles. Given the series timeline, and how it depicts the Second Age, with the Third Age being the basis for the LOTR and Hobbit books, we could see treatments of the Last Alliance of Elves and Men, as well as compelling coverage of Elven and Dwarven societies during these times.

The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power | Cast

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Additionally, we’ve seen a huge amount of cast announcements with some familiar faces, including Nazanin Boniadi and Benjamin Walker, who will portray various characters spread across Middle Earth. While there are familiar names, such as Elrond, Galadriel, Gil-Galad, Isildur, and Celebrimbor, there will be many characters with whom fans are far less familiar, and this series could prove to breathe life into a very interesting period for Tolkien’s world. Among the known cast of actors is the following:

  • Cynthia Addai-Robinson as Míriel
  • Robert Aramayo as Elrond
  • Owain Arthur as Durin IV
  • Maxim Baldry as Isildur
  • Nazanin Boniadi as Bronwyn
  • Morfydd Clark as Galadriel
  • Ismael Cruz Córdova as Arondir
  • Charles Edwards as Celebrimbor
  • Trystan Gravelle as Pharazôn
  • Lenny Henry as Sadoc Burrows
  • Ema Horvath as Eärien
  • Markella Kavenagh as Elanor “Nori” Brandyfoot
  • Simon Merrells as Trevyn
  • Tyroe Muhafidin as Theo
  • Peter Mullan as Durin III
  • Sophia Nomvete as Disa
  • Lloyd Owen as Elendil
  • Megan Richards as Poppy Proudfellow
  • Dylan Smith as Largo Brandyfoot
  • Charlie Vickers as Halbrand
  • Leon Wadham as Kemen
  • Benjamin Walker as Gil-galad
  • Sara Zwangobani as Marigold Brandyfoot

Additionally, these actors have been revealed, but have yet to get a name for their characters:

  • Daniel Weyman
  • Ian Blackburn
  • Beau Cassidy
  • Kip Chapman
  • Amelie Child-Villiers
  • Anthony Crum
  • Maxine Cunliffe
  • Will Fletcher
  • Thusitha Jayasundera
  • Joseph Mawle
  • Fabian McCallum
  • Geoff Morrell
  • Augustus Prew
  • Bridie Sisson
  • Peter Tait
  • Alex Tarrant

Everything Else We Know

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Beyond the casting and subject matter, there are also some exciting prospects such as the overall visual appeal of the series and the music by veteran TV composer Bear McCreary. McCreary has worked on a bunch of well-known projects, such as the reimagined Battlestar Galactica series, The Walking Dead, 2018 and 2022’s God of War games, Call of Duty: Vanguard, and Godzilla: King of the Monsters.

Aside from the fascinating cast and crew, there has been some controversy. Fans have been quick to criticize the ultra-high budget series, but much of the criticism is either unfounded or motivated by an ironic lack of awareness of Tolkien’s Middle Earth canon. There’s been an unfortunate amount of backlash that has been motivated by prejudice, as well as the misattributed quote by Tolkien going around that is almost amusingly spammed to the point of proving its point about the trolls rather than their complaints about the show. The quote goes as follows: “Evil is not able to create anything new, it can only distort and destroy what has been invented or made by the forces of good.”

Ultimately, the best practice is to watch the show and make your judgments. For those opposed to its existence, however, you’ll find your complaints will fall on deaf ears, as the second season will begin filming in October 2022.

This concludes our coverage of LOTR Rings of Power Episode 1 | Release Date, Cast, and Everything We Know! Be sure to check out our entertainment column for more content like this!

The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power will premiere on September 1, 2022, at 9 PM ET, on Amazon Prime Video.

- This article was updated on September 7th, 2022

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