Amazon’s ambitious Lord of the Rings series has gained another key piece today (Sept. 4), as Variety reports that Will Poulter, most recently of Ari Aster’s Midsommar, has signed on for one of the show’s lead roles. Although the details of Poulter’s character are, of course, being kept under lock and key, speculation is already running rampant online, with the leading theory being that the English actor is portraying a young Elrond of Rivendell.
reports that Poulter’s character is named Beldor, however, so Twitter’s excitement may very well be misplaced. At any rate, Poulter is just the second cast member to join Amazon’s massive Lord of the Rings series—Australian actor Markella Kavenagh was revealed to be in talks for the series back in July, though her role is unknown, as well, save that her character is reportedly named Tyra.
Prior to his punching a ticket to J.R.R. Tolkien’s Middle-earth by winning what Variety describes as “one of the more coveted jobs in town for young actors,” Poulter’s breakout year has included high-profile supporting roles in the aforementioned horror hit Midsommar, Aster’s Hereditary follow-up for A24, as well as Netflix’s Black Mirror: “Bandersnatch,” an Emmy-nominated, choose-your-own-adventure-style interactive special in which Poulter played mercurial, bad-boy videogame designer Colin Ritman. He’s previously appeared in Kathryn Bigelow’s Detroit, Lenny Abrahamson’s The Little Stranger, Alejandro González Iñárritu’s The Revenant and The Maze Runner franchise.
Much of this new journey to Middle-earth remains shrouded in secrecy, but it’s an easy pick for one of pop culture’s single most-anticipated projects of late, particularly considering the eye-popping investment Amazon is making in the series. Where the show’s core creative team is concerned, J.A. Bayona will direct multiple episodes, with scripts from showrunners J.D. Payne and Patrick McKay, and Bryan Cogman, a key behind-the-scenes figure on HBO’s Game of Thrones, is onboard as a consulting producer—HBO may very well come to regret passing on Cogman’s GoT spinoff pitch. The plot of the new series is a complete mystery, except that it takes place prior to Tolkien’s legendary trilogy, and is set in the Second Age, the era in which the infamous Rings of Power were crafted.
Production on Lord of the Rings is expected to begin in 2020, per THR.