New Zealand International Comedy Festival 2024 reviews

by The New Zealand herald — 26 May 2024

Fans are a bit divided that Warner Bros. will be revisiting The Lord of the Rings franchise, which has for so long been spearheaded by Peter Jackson. On one hand, some are elated that we'll be returning to Middle-earth in any capacity, and that's fair. Who doesn't want more from our favourite Hobbits, Elves, Dwarves, and Wizards? On the other hand, some have been skeptical after the lukewarm reception to Prime Video's prequel series, The Rings of Power, and that's likewise understandable.

Fans are divided over Warner Bros. revisiting The Lord of the Rings franchise, with some excited to return to Middle-earth while others remain skeptical due to the mixed reception of Prime Video’s The Rings of Power. However, significant buzz surrounds Andy Serkis directing The Lord of the Rings: The Hunt for Gollum, a title that recalls a beloved 2009 fan-made film by Chris Bouchard. Bouchard’s short film, created on a shoestring budget with the help of dedicated volunteers, garnered acclaim for its heartfelt and professional portrayal of Middle-earth, showcasing the depth of passion fans have for Tolkien’s work.

The original fan-film, set during Aragorn’s search for Gollum, was praised for its production values and fidelity to the source material despite its low budget. The excitement for Serkis’ new project is heightened by Peter Jackson’s involvement as a producer and his interest in exploring Gollum’s backstory. The fan-film’s brief removal from YouTube due to a Warner Bros. copyright claim sparked backlash, but it was quickly restored. This incident highlights the enduring affection for the fan-made project and the anticipation for Serkis’ new adaptation.

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