Filming for Season Two of Prime Video’s The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power is already underway, and today new casting was revealed.
Of particular note is the recasting of the role of ‘Adar’ – Joseph Mawle will not be back for the second season. (One has to assume this is because he is not available; he was so great in the role that I can’t imagine the showrunners wanted to replace him.) Given some of the speculation about whether this is a ‘winning team,’ it’s also worth noting that JD Payne and Patrick McKay are still at the helm.
Here’s the full press release:
Prime Video’s The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power Announces New Cast Members for Season Two
Seven new actors join the existing cast of the global hit series in recurring roles for the forthcoming second season, currently in production in the UK
CULVER CITY, California—December 1, 2022—The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power has announced seven new recurring cast members for the forthcoming second season, currently in production in the UK.
“Since its premiere, The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power has been bringing audiences together to experience the magic and wonder of J.R.R. Tolkien’s magnificent Middle-earth. To date, season one is the top Original series for Prime Video in every region and has been viewed by over 100 million people worldwide, a truly global hit that speaks to the universal nature of powerful storytelling. We welcome these wonderful actors to our ‘fellowship’ and look forward to telling more incredible Second Age stories in season two,” said Vernon Sanders, Head of Global Television, Amazon Studios.
The new cast members are: Gabriel Akuwudike, Yasen ‘Zates’ Atour, Ben Daniels, Amelia Kenworthy, Nia Towle, and Nicholas Woodeson. The role of Orc leader “Adar” has been recast for Season Two, and will be played by Sam Hazeldine.
Biographies and headshots for the newly announced cast are featured below.
Gabriel Akuwudike is a British-Nigerian actor who has appeared in the acclaimed series Hanna (Prime Video). Other TV credits include Ridley Road (BBC) and War of the Worlds (FX/Disney+). He has appeared in films including Sam Mendes’ 1917, and HBO’s Brexit directed by Toby Haynes.
YASEN ‘ZATES’ ATOUR
Yasen ‘Zates’ Atour is most known for his role as “Coen” in Season Two of The Witcher (Netflix). He was also a series regular in Young Wallander (Netflix), playing the role of “Reza Al-Rahman.” He directed the film Good Intentions and was an executive producer and star of the film When the Screaming Starts.
Ben Daniels has had recurring roles in television including Jupiter’s Legacy (Netflix) as “Walter Sampson,” The Crown (Netflix) as “Lord Snowdon,” The Exorcist (Hulu) as “Father Marcus Keane,” House of Cards (Netflix) as “Adam Galloway,” and Law & Order: UK (ITV) as “James Steel.” Film credits include roles in Benediction, Captive State, Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, and The Exception. Ben is an award-winning stage actor who has appeared in numerous productions including The Normal Heart (National Theatre – Olivier Award Nomination – Best Actor, Critics’ Circle Theatre Award – Best Actor), All My Sons (National Theatre – Olivier Award – Best Supporting Actor), and Les Liaisons Dangereuses (Broadway – Tony and Drama Desk Nominations – Best Actor). Ben trained at the London Academy of Music and Dramatic Arts.
Sam Hazeldine’s credits include Peaky Blinders (BBC), Slow Horses (Apple TV+), The Huntsman: Winter’s War, Mechanic: Resurrection, and Ridley Scott’s The Last Duel. He currently appears in The Sandman (Netflix) and The Playlist (Netflix), and will next be seen in the upcoming Band of Brothers sequel Masters of The Air (AppleTV+) opposite Austin Butler and Callum Turner, and starring alongside Jonah Hauer-King and Dar Zuzovsky in the Casanova drama feature, A Beautiful Imperfection.
Amelia Kenworthy is a graduate of the Royal Academy of Dramatic Arts. While at RADA, she performed in numerous stage productions including Spring Awakening as “Anna,” A Midsummer Night’s Dream as “Puck,” Two Gentlemen of Verona as “Julia,” Pomona as “Ollie” and Against as “Shiela.” She has also appeared in short films IRL and Messenger. She will make her television debut in The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power.
Nia Towle was most recently seen in the Netflix film Persuasion. On stage, Nia debuted Neil Gaiman’s The Ocean at the End of the Lane at both the National Theatre and Duke of York Theatre. During her studies at Guildhall School of Drama, from which she graduated in 2021, Nia played leading roles in plays including Yerma, A Streetcar Named Desire, and Medea.
Nicholas Woodeson is a veteran English performer of television, film, and theatre. In television, his credits include Silent Witness (BBC), Baptiste (BBC), The Honourable Woman (BBC), Poirot (ITV), and Rome (HBO / BBC). He can also be seen in films including The Hustle, Paddington 2, The Danish Girl, Skyfall, and Conspiracy. His most recent theatre performances include The Two Popes, “The Duke of Norfolk”in The Mirror and The Light, “The Mayor” in The Visit, “Pope Francis” in The Pope, “Mr. Kidd” in The Room, and “Willy” in Death of a Salesman. Nicholas is a graduate of the Royal Academy of Dramatic Arts.
All eight first season episodes are now available to stream exclusively on Prime Video in more than 240 countries and territories in multiple languages.
The Rings of Power brings to screens for the very first time the heroic legends of the fabled Second Age of Middle-earth’s history. This epic drama is set thousands of years before the events of J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings books, and will take viewers back to an era in which great powers were forged, kingdoms rose to glory and fell to ruin, unlikely heroes were tested, hope hung by the finest of threads, and the greatest villain that ever flowed from Tolkien’s pen threatened to cover all the world in darkness. Beginning in a time of relative peace, the series follows an ensemble cast of characters, both familiar and new, as they confront the long-feared reemergence of evil to Middle-earth. From the darkest depths of the Misty Mountains, to the majestic forests of the elf capital of Lindon, to the breathtaking island kingdom of Númenor, to the farthest reaches of the map, these kingdoms and characters will carve out legacies that live on long after they are gone.
The first season of The Rings of Power has been an unprecedented success, viewed by more than 100 million people worldwide, with more than 24 billion minutes streamed. The highly anticipated series attracted more than 25 million global viewers on its first day, marking the biggest premiere in the history of Prime Video, and also debuted as the No. 1 show on Nielsen’s overall streaming chart in its opening weekend. The show has also broken all previous Prime Video records for the most viewers, and has driven more Prime sign-ups worldwide during its launch window than any other previous content. Additionally, The Rings of Power is the top Original series in every region—North America, Europe, APAC, LATAM, and the rest of the world. The season finale also created a global cultural moment, with multiple series-themed hashtags, including #TheRingsofPower and others, trending in 27 countries across Twitter for over 426 cumulative hours throughout the weekend.
Season Two of the series is produced by showrunners and executive producers J.D. Payne & Patrick McKay. They are joined by executive producers Lindsey Weber, Callum Greene, Justin Doble, Jason Cahill, and Gennifer Hutchison, along with co-executive producer Charlotte Brandstrom, producers Kate Hazell and Helen Shang, and co-producers Andrew Lee, Matthew Penry-Davey, and Clare Buxton.