You'd think we've had enough of stories from J.R.R. Tolkien's Middle Earth. Nothing against that detailed—and sometimes fun and intriguing—fictional universe, but damn. That's a lot of storytelling.
Amazon doesn't think so. That's why the 8,000 pound gorilla of online retail paid a quarter-billion dollars to outbid Netflix in buying a new Lord of the Rings series. Just as remarkable: Amazon went ahead and committed to a five-season run of the show.
That kind of money would buy a hungry hobbit a lot of second breakfasts. But the purchase amount is chump change. THR reports that Amazon has committed to begin production by 2020, and "according to the terms of the pact. When production expenses like casting, producers and visual effects are factored in, the series is expected to cost north of $1 billion."
According to Nerdist, throwing all these mountains of money around "stems from Bezos’ September 2017 mandate that Amazon find the next Game of Thrones."
If Thrones is Bezos's gold standard, someone should tell him Lord of the Rings isn't known for male nudity, soft core-level sex scenes, or Red Wedding-style massacres.