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Amazon Head Honcho Jeff Bezos Recalls Giving Notes On LOTR: The Rings Of Power Series And Has A Funny, Self-Deprecating Take

The cast of Amazon's The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power
(Image credit: Amazon Studios)

Amazon has been in the streaming business for some time now, but the company’s latest original series might just push it to another level. Prime Video marked the release of the highly anticipated new series The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power this past Friday, and the series has already made quite the impression. The show’s development took some time and, of course during that process, the studio’s head honcho, Jeff Bezos, gave some notes. And when reflecting on that very thing, Bezos provided a funny and self-deprecating take. 

Let’s be honest here. Most Hollywood creatives seem to wince at the mere thought of having to receive notes from the powers that be. And when it comes to the showrunners (J.D. Payne & Patrick McKay) and writing staff for The Rings of Power, that feeling was probably even more intense considering that Jeff Bezos was the one giving feedback. (I mean, he’s only the richest man in the world and one of the most powerful people in the entertainment industry after all.) Based on what Bezos says, the process wasn’t all that bad on his side of things – even when the writers didn’t listen to him: 

Every showrunner’s dream – and I mean every showrunner – their dream is to get notes on scripts and early cuts from the founder and executive chairman. They loved that. I need to thank you both for listening whenever it helped but mostly I need to thank you for ignoring me at exactly the right times.

Jeff Bezos certainly delivered a jovial take on the matter during the Lord of the Rings show’s U.K. premiere, where Variety was present. In the past, he’s proven that he can laugh at himself, like the time he joked about Leonardo DiCaprio appearing to steal his girlfriend. But in regard to the show, his sentiments would seem to suggest that he and the creative team forged a solid working relationship. And funny enough, while Bezos was working with them, he himself apparently received a piece of advice from someone close to him. 

While giving a speech at the premiere, the Amazon founder revealed that his son, who’s a fan of J.R.R. Tolkien’s fantasy saga, gave him a blunt note. Apparently, he told his dad not to “eff up” the show. I’d like to think that’s a sentiment that many fans probably shared when the show was first announced. And so far, it would seem that the former company president and the writing staff heeded the warning. 

The Rings of Power has received mostly positive reviews from critics, with many praising its scale and use of the franchise’s extensive lore. Some feel that Amazon gave the Lord of the Rings show the strongest start possible, thanks in part to the two-episode premiere strategy. And as you’d expect, there’s already more on the way. In fact, Galadriel actor Morfydd Clark revealed what she already knows about future seasons while speaking exclusively to CinemaBlend.

So with more seasons, will likely come more feedback and notes from Jeff Bezos and co. However, given the response to the show thus far, I’d wager that Bezos won’t shell out quite as many moving forward. And if he does, the showrunners may end up (humorously) ignoring just a few as they go about their business. 

The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power drops new episodes on Fridays, so be sure you grab an Amazon Prime subscription so that you can check them out. Also, take a look at CinemaBlend’s 2022 TV schedule for info on other small-screen offerings.

Erik Swann
Senior Content Producer

Covering superheroes, sci-fi, comedy, and almost anything else in film and TV. I eat more pizza than the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.