Christopher Tolkien Resigns as Director of Tolkien Estate, New Era for Middle-Earth

The recent announcement that Amazon acquired the television rights to J. R. R. Tolkien’s Middle-earth rocked the internet. The Tolkien Estate has been famously protective of Tolkien’s work being adapted into other mediums. Specifically, the estate’s director, Tolkien’s son Christopher, is historically reluctant to allow outsiders to tamper with his father’s work.


Christopher Tolkien

Image Via The One Ring now reports that Christopher Tolkien has retired from his role as director of the Tolkien Estate. Tolkien is ninety-two-years-old and has been dropping hints at his retirement lately, including in the preface of this year’s release of his father’s Beren and Luthien. He officially resigned on August 31st.


Considering the Amazon deal happened just a couple months after Christopher Tolkien’s resignation, don’t be surprised to hear about new video games or movies or theme parks. Just as spin-offs for the Harry Potter and Star Wars franchises have abounded, Middle-earth will likely follow. In terms of movies and TV, it’s a tentpole economy. HBO has Game of Thrones, Warner Bros. has Harry Potter, and Disney has Star Wars and Marvel and Pixar and a million other things. Amazon now has Lord of the Rings.


Many believed certain Tolkien properties would never see the light of day or that Peter Jackson’s Lord of the Rings trilogy would be all fans could expect. It seems that’s changed. Still, though, props should go out to Christopher Tolkien, who’s been a steadfast defender and curator of his father’s legacy. Good on you, Christopher!


Feature Image Via New Line Cinema