Lord of the Rings Needs To Stop Focusing On The One Ring

By Christopher Isaac | Published

Lord of the rings one ring

Tolkien fans have had some reason to be happy recently with the announcement that 2026 will see the release of a new movie set in Middle-earth: Lord of the Rings: The Hunt for Gollum. And while it is great news to see more content from the fantasy genre’s most iconic story, it does come with one disappointing flaw. The only Lord of the Rings content we get continues to be fixated on the One Ring, which is a story’s conclusion we already know.

We Know How It Ends

andy serkis Lord of the rings one ring

It feels like a crime that Tokien ensured his world has one of the deepest lores and backstories in all of fantasy and yet all media based on his work continues to just tell variations on the same conflict. There will be no surprise about how The Hunt for Gollum ends: Gollum will inevitably escape, because he has to live on to his role in The Lord of the Rings trilogy up until he and the One Ring are ultimately destroyed together. There is no tension or intrigue in a prequel continuing to focus on the events surrounding Sauron.

So Much More Lore

Lord of the rings one ring

And there is so much other great Lord of the Rings content that could be drawn upon. The Silmarillion alone covers so much history that would be fascinating to see on screen. Not to mention the appendices from The Lord of the Rings that outline details of events that happen after the destruction of the One Ring. It feels myopic at this point to continue to try and mine new content from an era of Middle-earth that we all know so well.

The Tolkien Estate

To be fair, film makers would no doubt highly enjoy making movies out of the stories from The Silmarillion if they could. However, the Tolkien estate is infamously guarded with the author’s rights to his work due to dissatisfaction with how the adaptations have been turning out. That is a legitimate obstacle, but then it seems like efforts would be better spent trying to find terms that the Tolkien estate would agree to rather than just continuing to make more Lord of the Rings content exclusively focusing on the One Ring.

Who Asked For More Gollum?

lord of the rings gollum

Making a movie so fixated on Gollum is an especially odd choice seeing as how the video game The Lord of the Rings: Gollum tried this exact same thing and wound up being one of the worst reviewed games of last year. When people think of The Lord of the Rings, they probably first envision the fun characters like Gandalf or Legolas or the other Fellowship members who sought to destroy the One Ring. How many people are really clamoring for more Gollum content?

It Feels Familiar

first lightsaber

With The Lord of the Rings developing such tunnel vision on the One Ring, it is beginning to feel a lot like how Star Wars can’t help but trace all their stories back to the Skywalker family. Eventually it feels dull and predictable.

Why continue to focus on Sauron when the series has so many other great villains? It would be so much more interesting to see a story about Morgoth, who was the first Dark Lord, someone so powerful and evil that even Sauron originally served him.

It Might Be A Good Movie, But It’s Still Tired Material

lord of the rings

With Peter Jackson returning at the helm as producer, The Hunt for Gollum might very well be a very good movie. Bot hopefully after this some progress is made on acquiring the rights to other content surrounding Middle-earth.

There are only so many details to learn about the time period of The Lord of the Rings and how the One Ring was used to defeat Sauron. There are too many great stories from Tolkien’s works to keep retelling the same one.