The Warner Bros. animated Middle-earth production, The War of the Rohirrim, is set to debut on screen on April 12, 2024.
The feature-length film is set to focus on the story of the Rohirrim king, Helm Hammerhand, as outlined in Appendix A of The Lord of the Rings.
Warner Bros. says that it will “explore… the untold story behind the fortress of Helm’s Deep, delving into the life and bloodsoaked times of one of Middle-earth’s most legendary figures; the mighty King of Rohan — Helm Hammerhand.”
Acclaimed filmmaker Kenji Kamiyama (especially known in anime circles for his work on Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex) is directing, while Philippa Boyens (co-screenwriter for Peter Jackson’s Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit) is executive producer.
The writing team of Phoebe Gittins and Arty Papageorgiou have penned the screenplay based on a script from Jeffrey Addiss & Will Matthews. The “Lord of the Rings” returning creative team also includes Oscar winner Richard Taylor and Tolkien illustrator John Howe, while animation is being done by Sola Entertainment.
If you don’t know Sola Entertainment, they have previously worked on the 2D-styled Tower of God (for streaming company Crunchyroll), Bladerunner Black Out: 2022, plus 3D efforts Blade Runner: Black Lotus and Ghost in the Shell SAC: 2045.
On the works so far, Executive Producer Philippa Boyens says: “I’m in awe of the creative talent who have come together to bring this epic, heart-pounding story to life, from the mastery of Kenji Kamiyama to a truly stellar cast. I cannot wait to share this adventure with fans of cinema everywhere.”
Warner Bros. also revealed that animation work has been underway since last year at Sola Entertainment, and voice casting will be announced very soon.
It’s probably not well known, but Kamiyama did an interview late last year with Japanese media outlet Akiba-Souken where he touched on his work on The War of the Rohirrim briefly.
TORn has the following translation of relevant pieces from that article and Kamiyama’s comments:
What makes anime an anime?
Kamiyama is busy working on a number of projects, including directing the spin-off anime “The Lord of the Rings: The War of the Rohirrim” from the blockbuster movie “The Lord of the Rings.”
The soon-to-be-released “Star Wars: Visions – Ninth Jedi” is based on Kamiyama’s own ideas, he wanted to go back to the original story of a young man travelling the countryside, who gets involved in the battle over the Galactic Empire. Kamiyama was given the official Star Wars history lecture but also freedom to create his own story and setting within that realm.
Kamiyama is currently working on “The Lord of the Rings: The War of the Rohirrim.” He says that “First of all, the existence of the live-action version of the “Lord of the Rings” series created by J.R.R. Tolkien’s original work and director Peter Jackson is tremendous. For Hollywood, there is no national policy for the film industry, but it has become a core industry of the region.”
“I feel that the small scale of Japanese animation is good, and that it has a different dimension from ‘true’ (ie live action) movie production,” he says.
“However, working on “The Lord of the Rings: The War of the Rohirrim” has the difficulty and fun that makes me realize things like ‘probably Hollywood is making movies like this’.
“It’s completely different to working on other projects. Because we are focusing on making it as ‘entertainment’, it is possible to create works that guarantee a certain level of quality depending on the budget scale and staffing. There is a lot of discussion about the screenplay, the process is similar to building a stadium or a bridge. I think “The Lord of the Rings: The War of the Rohirrim” will create a new level of animation production.”
One of the things I love the most in my collection are all the behind the scene books, art books, making of type books. It’s so much fun getting a chance to see the process of how these fantastic films were brought to life. Our friends at Weta have a brand new book that fits this genre of book with the Middle-earth: From Script to Screen. This 512 page book covers the world building Sir Peter Jackson and the crew at Weta did to build what we saw in both The Lord of the Rings Trilogy as well as The Hobbit Trilogy. Written by Daniel Falconer with assistance by our own Happy Hobbit Kili (done under her pen name KM Rice) this richly illustrated with thousands of film frames, concept art and behind-the-scenes imagery, many previously unseen, Middle-earth: From Script to Screen follows in the footsteps of the Fellowship of the Ring and the Company of Thorin Oakenshield, visiting the realms and landscapes of Middle-earth and uncovering their secrets. You can Pre-Order this fantastic book right now for $75, and if you do so straight from Weta you will receive a set of exclusive prop replica set dressings by 3Foot7 Calligrapher Daniel Reeve.
The TORn family would like to congratulate Sir Peter Jackson who is among the six new inductees to New Zealand’s Business Hall of Fame. The Lord of the Rings and Hobbit film productions contributed to the New Zealand economy for years, not to mention Weta Workshop, Weta Digital, and many other spin-off endeavors that Peter had a personal hand in founding, or contributed to in partnership with others.
The hall of fame was established in 1994 to recognise and celebrate individual business people who have made a big contribution to the economic and social development of New Zealand. According to the stuff.co.nz article, the inauguration ceremony will take place on Thursday, June 9. Congratulations, P.J.!! Read More …
Weta Digital has been nominated for Outstanding Visual Effects in a Real-time Project by the Visual Effects Society for the virtual reality demo “The Hobbit: A Thief in the Shadows.” The virtual reality (VR) experience, a collaboration between Weta Digital, Epic Games, NVIDIA and Oculus is designed to let someone wearing the PC headsets for gamers to take Bilbo’s place as he first encounters Smaug (voiced by Benedict Cumberbatch) in his lair.
One of my favorite creatures in all of Middle-earth is the Balrog. When this guy first popped on-screen in The Lord of the Rings; The Fellowship of the Ring, my jaw dropped with just how cool he looked, and last year at Comic-Con the same thing happened when I saw this amazing piece. Part of the reborn The Lord of the Rings statue line, this time fans get a large version of this mind blowing creature. Coming in at 20.5″ high, with a weight of 33 pounds the Balrog is going to be a piece that will make everyone who sees your collection stop and look at it in awe. Shipping right now from all warehouses, the Balrog can be yours for $649 with an edition size of only 1500 pieces worldwide. Continue reading “Collecting The Precious – Weta Workshop’s The Balrog: The Demon of Shadow and Flame”
As you will recall we teamed up with our friends at HarperCollins to give away a signed copy of this fantastic set of books covering the amazing work by the great folks at Weta Workshop & Weta Digital.
After going through all the submissions picking one person was a tough choice, but one very lucky fan of the talent in New Zealand is about to be very happy.
We are pleased to announce that Megan C. of Gallup New Mexico will be the lucky fan to recieve The Art of Film Magic – 20 Years of Weta from HarperCollins. We will be passing along your information and you should have your gift coming soon.
Thanks to HarperCollins for teaming up with us and all of you who took the time to enter.
Join us in Los Angeles in February at The One Last Party
We’re hosting a Party of Special Magnificence next February — a toast to all SIX movies, both LOTR trilogy and The Hobbit.