Amazon said that the first episodes of The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power, drew more than 25 million global viewers on its first day, the biggest premiere in the history of Prime Video.
The two-episode debut broke all records for Prime Video, said the company, which reportedly spent $715 million on the eight-episodes series, including $250 million for the rights alone, making it one of the most-expensive productions in TV history.
Amazon's J.R.R. Tolkien saga comes hot on the heels of the debut of HBO's House of the Dragon, a prequel to its mega hit Game of Thrones. On its first day last month, HBO said House of the Dragon attracted 9.986 million views across linear and streaming across the U.S., Latin America and the Europe, Middle East and Asia regions. It was the biggest series debut in HBO history, according to HBO.
“It is somehow fitting that Tolkien’s stories - among the most popular of all time, and what many consider to be the true origin of the fantasy genre - have led us to this proud moment. I am so grateful to the Tolkien Estate – and to our showrunners J.D. Payne and Patrick McKay, executive producer Lindsey Weber, cast and crew - for their tireless collaborative efforts and boundless creative energy. And it is the tens of millions of fans watching – clearly as passionate about Middle-earth as we are – who are our true measure of success.”
The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power launched exclusively on Prime Video in more than 240 countries and territories worldwide. The finale is set for Oct. 14.
According to Amazon, the epic drama is set thousands of years before the events of J.R.R. Tolkien's The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings, and takes 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 one of the greatest villains that ever flowed from Tolkien's pen threatened to cover all the world in darkness.
The series is led by showrunners and executive producers J.D. Payne & Patrick McKay. They are joined by executive producers Lindsey Weber, Callum Greene, J.A. Bayona, Belén Atienza, Justin Doble, Jason Cahill, Gennifer Hutchison, Bruce Richmond, and Sharon Tal Yguado, and producers Ron Ames and Christopher Newman. Wayne Che Yip is co-executive producer and directs along with J.A. Bayona and Charlotte Brändström. ■
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Jon has been business editor of Broadcasting+Cable since 2010. He focuses on revenue-generating activities, including advertising and distribution, as well as executive intrigue and merger and acquisition activity. Just about any story is fair game, if a dollar sign can make its way into the article. Before B+C, Jon covered the industry for TVWeek, Cable World, Electronic Media, Advertising Age and The New York Post. A native New Yorker, Jon is hiding in plain sight in the suburbs of Chicago.