If you are a fan of Mouse Guard, you should probably check out this short film from CGMeetup, which reinvents The Lord of the Rings with mice.
In a dark subway tunnel, a group of mice find a gold ring-pull that seems to have a mysterious effect on one of them. Not so far from them, an owl and his enslaved rats are watching. The owl sends his rats to get hold of this strange object...
The film was directed by Jade Baillargeault, Nazli Doale, Dimitri James, Quang Daniel La, Morgane Lau, Mélanie Pango, and Manon Pringault, and features music and sound design by Thomas Tillard, Alexandre Tron, and Maxime Vatopoulos.
The music is particularly inspired, managing to capture the feel of the Lord of the Rings and Harry Potter movies without being too directly analogous to any of those scores.
The story is updated for modern times, with a subway as its setting and a soda can pull instead of the traditional ring -- but there are still plenty of callbacks to the original Lord of the Rings movies.
...and, hey. Even if it's only for a few minutes, this managed to be more entertaining than the whole of The Hobbit's three movies.
Of course, these animators are not the only ones reinventing Tolkien's classic. Right now, Amazon Studios is developing a series, to which they have already committed hundreds of millions of dollars.
In a recent interview with The Hollywood Reporter, Amazon exec Jennifer Salke talked about the upcoming series, which was first announced last November. As Salke revealed, the goal is to get the series into production within the next few years, and ultimately on to Amazon's platform in 2021.
"It'll be in production in two years; [on the air in] 2021 is the hope." Salke explained. "But there are other people who wish it was 2020."
With that release date so far away, it makes sense that details on the series are somewhat slim. According to previous reports, the series will feature plenty of fan-favorite characters, and could focus on the adventures of a young Aragorn. And as Salke put it, the execution of the series will hopefully satisfy fans.
"All of us would love a big, addictive show that is executed at the top of its game." Salke suggested. "We're really excited about Lord of the Rings. Despite all the chatter about it, the deal just closed a month ago. We've been talking to writers. We have an estate that's very active. I've spent three hours with Simon Tolkien. There's a lot of moving parts with it. We'll have some game plan to move forward with very soon."
Apparently, part of that game plan could end up involving Peter Jackson, the director who brought the previous Lord of the Rings and Hobbit films to life. While Jackson recently denied any involvement with the series, Salke hinted that there still could be hope.
"We're in conversations with him that I think are very amicable about how much involvement he wants and what kind." Salke revealed. "We haven't figured out exactly what that is yet. He may say he is involved or he's not involved. We're still very much in conversation with him about what kind of involvement he would propose."
But as Salke revealed, whether or not Jackson is involved will not get in the way of finding the show's creative team.
"We are currently talking to writers." Salke revealed. "I have sat with three or four different groups of writers. Sharon Tal Yguado has met with many more than that. When we announced it, many agents called and with clients and British writers have come calling. There have been a lot of informational meetings about the material and about the scope of what we can do. My hope would be to put together a group of talented people, which will obviously have a leader who can embark on this big ambitious endeavor."