Amazon will get an additional 5% from more New Zealand’s Screen Production Grant, Reuters reports today.

(Reuters) New Zealand said on Friday it has agreed to give Amazon (AMZN.O) extra rebates on its expenses for the filming of “The Lord of the Rings” TV series in the country, hoping to reap multi-year economic and tourism benefits.

Amazon will get an extra 5% from New Zealand’s Screen Production Grant in addition to the 20% grant the production already qualifies for, the government said in a statement.

Amazon is estimated to be spending about NZ$650 million ($465 million) filming the first season of the show, for broadcast on its Amazon Prime streaming platform, meaning it would be eligible for a rebate of about NZ$162 million ($116 million), the government said.

“The agreement with Amazon … generates local jobs and creates work for local businesses,” Economic and Regional Development Minister Stuart Nash said in a statement. “It will enable a new wave of international tourism branding and promotion for this country.”

The first season entered production in Auckland last year with more than 1,200 people employed. Approximately 700 workers are indirectly employed by providing services to the production, the government said.

U.S.-based Amazon media officials weren’t immediately available for comment outside regular U.S. business hours.

($1 = 1.3976 New Zealand dollars)

SO … you heard Amazon’s working on a Lord of the Rings TV series or a Middle-earth TV Series, or something, and now you want to be ‘read and ready’ when the show premiers (sometime later this year, we hope!). But you don’t know Tolkien from Tookish? Get your pens, pencils, or pixels handy! This is your Reading List to help you prepare! With the understanding that this list will go way beyond the scope of what Amazon has purchased the rights to work with, here’s what you Need to Read:

The Basics

Reading List to prepare for Amazon's Middle-earth TV Series - these are the books you Need to Read!

The Lord of the Rings: Especially allll that stuff after the story ends, known as the Appendices. VERY IMPORTANT! The Appendices are the source from which Amazon is generating, or on which they are basing, their storytelling; but reading them on their own will be of little worth if you have no context or passion for Middle-earth.

[Ed’s note – if you have a REALLY short amount of time, your ‘Cheat’s guide’/last minute revision is Appendix A I (i) ‘Numenor’ and Appendix B ‘The Tale of Years – The Second Age’.] [Amazon.com]

Continue reading “Reading List to prepare for Amazon’s Middle-earth TV Series”

The Epic Realm of Tolkien Part One - Beren and LuthienMalcolm from ADC Publications writes: Thank you for adding our earlier book to your website, so that your viewers are aware of its existence. This is our second and the newest publication this year: The Epic Realm of Tolkien Part One – Beren and Luthien (Authors: Alex Lewis & Elizabeth Currie)

Lewis and Currie continue their ground-breaking studies with an examination of Tolkien’s most personal story, the Tale of Beren and Lúthien in its various forms. It is analysed from the early version in the Book of Lost Tales, through the incomparable poetry of the Lay of Leithian, through to beyond the Silmarillion version and the ideas that Tolkien was working towards the end of his life. The astonishing and powerful connections between Beren and Lúthien’s tale and the Arthurian legends in their various forms are examined and give a fascinating glimpse into the world of medieval literature which Professor Tolkien knew and loved so well. Find out how Tevildo Demon-Prince of Cats came into the tale and then was dropped in favour of other concepts, how Tolkien pondered over whether Beren should be a mortal man or an immortal elf. And throughout these tales run the foundations of Arthurian Story in a fascinating way. The connections that Lewis and Currie pursue lead to an elegant and original explanation of the creative purpose behind the Book of Lost Tales as a concept, and also give compelling insight as to how this related to the concept inherent within the Silmarillion and Tolkien’s Legendarium itself. In Epic Realms of Tolkien, learn also of the true significance of the Eriol / Aelfwine character and his adventures and deeds. Continue reading “New Book: The Epic Realm of Tolkien Part One – Beren and Luthien”