Lord Of The Rings Director Wishes He Could Forget The Movies

Lord of the Rings director Peter Jackson once wished he could completely obliterate his memory of the movies, but let us explain why.

By Vic Medina | Published

Peter Jackson lord of the rings

This sounds like a job for Gandalf: Oscar-winning director Peter Jackson once wanted to forget everything he did while making The Lord of the Rings trilogy. He considered it so seriously, apparently, that he even consulted a mentalist about being hypnotized to forget it all. Before you choke on your lembas bread, however, we should clue you in as to why. In an appearance on The Hollywood Reporter‘s Awards Chatter podcast, Jackson said he wanted to have the opportunity to experience the classic films with fresh eyes, like so may fans did, rather than being burdened by the experiences of years of work he spent making them.

“I always felt I was the unlucky person who never got to see (the movies) as a coming-out-of-the-blue film,” Jackson said, according to The Hollywood Reporter. “By the time they were screening, I was immersed in it for five or six years. It was such a loss for me not be able to see them like everyone else.” While that feeling is understandable, Jackson also admitted that he went so far as to speak with British mentalist Derren Brown about the possibility of forgetting the six to seven years he spent making the films, although he never followed through on the idea. Jackson likely didn’t want to risk never remembering the experiences making the films, or personally winning three Academy Awards in 2004 for The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King (Best Picture, Best Director, and Best Adapted Screenplay).

The Jackson interview also made headlines as he revealed that Amazon Studios essentially ghosted him over his involvement with their new series, The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power. As far back as 2018, Amazon Studios approached him and screenwriter/producer Fran Walsh about possibly providing some kind of creative input to the show. Jackson and Walsh agreed, once they saw the initial scripts. Amazon agreed, however, they never followed up and sent any scripts to review. In a statement, Amazon Studios said they were required to keep their series “distinct and separate” from the Jackson films, although they did not explain the lack of communication. Still, Jackson said he has no hard feelings, and as a fan, is looking forward to watching the series, which premieres on Amazon Prime Video on September 2. Some Lord of the Rings fans, upset with the reported changes the show is making from J.R.R. Tolkien’s vision, jokingly suggested on Twitter that Jackson might want to use hypnosis to forget The Rings of Power.

Although Jackson does look back fondly on his time making The Lord of the Rings films, he didn’t quite go as far as the actors did to remember their time. The members of “The Fellowship” (including Elijah Wood and Viggo Mortensen) all got the same tattoo – featuring the One Ring and the Elvish word for “friendship” – as a bonding experience. Only John Rhys-Davies (Gimli) turned down the idea, with his stunt double taking the tattoo in his place. Jackson is likely due to make some memories he won’t want to forget later this year, as his Beatles documentary Get Back has been nominated for five Emmy Awards.