Gollum Actor Andy Serkis Ready to Return for New Line’s ‘Lord of the Rings’ Movie

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The Lord of the Rings movie poster with Andy Serkis and Gollum edited over

Credit: New Line, Warner Bros.

“The Lord of the Rings” is a high fantasy novel series written by JRR Tolkien and published in three volumes between 1954 and 1955. The story follows the hobbit Frodo Baggins as he sets out on a quest to destroy the One Ring, a powerful artifact created by the dark lord Sauron at Mount Doom. The novel was inspired by Tolkien’s love of mythology, folklore, and language, and was initially intended to be a sequel to his earlier work, “The Hobbit”.

Frodo (Elijah Wood) with the One Ring falling onto finger, from Lord of the Rings
Credit: New Line Cinema

Related: ‘Lord of the Rings’ Spin-Off Slapped With $250 Million Lawsuit

The Peter Jackson-directed The Lord of the Rings movies

In 2001, director Peter Jackson released the first of his three films based on “The Lord of the Rings” — beginning with The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring (2001), followed by The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers (2002), and ending with The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King (2003). The Lord of the Rings trilogy were a critical and commercial success, winning a combined 17 Academy Awards and grossing nearly $3 billion worldwide.

Aragorn talking to Gandalf in Lord of the Rings: Return of the King
Credit: New Line Cinema

Jackson’s adaptation has been praised for its faithfulness to the source material, its stunning visual effects, and its memorable performances by actors such as Ian McKellen as Gandalf the Grey/Gandalf the White, Viggo Mortensen as Aragorn/Strider, Orlando Bloom as Legolas Greenleaf, John Rhys-Davies as Gimli Sean Astin as Samwise Gamgee/Sam Gamgee, Elijah Wood as Frodo Baggins. The Lord of the Rings films also featured much-lauded performances from actors like Dominic Monaghan as Meriadoc Brandybuck AKA Merry, and Billy Boyd as Peregrin Took AKA Pippin, of the mischievous hobbit duo, Merry and Pippin. The series also starred Christopher Lee as Saruman the White, Sean Bean as Boromir, Cate Blanchett as Galadriel, Liv Tyler as Arwen Undómiel, Hugo Weaving as Elrond, Bernard Hill as Théoden King of Rohan, Miranda Otto as Éowyn, Karl Urban as Éomer, David Wenham as Faramir, and Ian Holm as Bilbo Baggins.

Orlando Bloom as Legolas
Credit: New Line Cinema

Related: Sudden Heart Attack Halts Production of ‘Lord of the Rings’ Spin-Off

A new Lord of the Rings sequel? Or prequel?

It’s without a doubt that these film adaptations of JRR Tolkien’s classic novels helped to popularize the fantasy genre and introduced a new generation to Tolkien’s beloved world of Middle-earth. Now, one fan-favorite actor from the original series of films is ready to jump back into — not rugged boots, armor, and swords — but a mo-cap suit.

Andy Serkis as Smeagol/Gollum in The Lord of the Rings
Credit: New Line Cinema

The Hollywood Reporter (THR) sat down with English actor Andy Serkis, fresh off the popular Disney+ Star Wars series, Andor, and Luther: The Fallen Sun (2023) based on the 2010 BBC series, Luther, starring Idris Elba. Speaking about the importance of The Lord of the Rings to him as an actor, THR asks him about the recently announced Lord of the Rings movies that are “in the works” at New Line and Warner Bros., and whether he’d be interested in returning to the role of two-faced Smeagol and/or Gollum. Since the purported movies would be set within the Third Age of Middle-earth (AKA most likely between The Hobbit and the Lord of the Rings films), Gollum would naturally be kicking around during Sauron’s rise to power.

Serkis is enthusiastic, talking openly about how the Lord of the Rings cast and crew are “a second family to me”, and that he “adore[s] those guys” after the many years he’s spent with the iconic group:

I adore those guys and they are a second family to me. I’ve spent so many years making films with them.

Merry, Pippen, and Treebeard
Credit: New Line Cinema

Serkis continues, discussing how the filmmaking is “on a different kind of level”, calling the filming experience something “you live and breathe”. Finally, he discusses that it would “be an amazing thing” if “some opportunity were to come up”:

I love their sensibility and their take; it’s filmmaking on a different kind of level. You live and breathe it. And so, yes, if some opportunity were to come up, it would be an amazing thing.

Clearly, with the Lord of the Rings books and films maintaining their public perception as cultural icons, a follow-up, even in the form of a prequel would undoubtedly do well. Since it’s been nearly 10 years since the last Martin Freeman-led (Bilbo Baggins) The Hobbit trilogy which concluded in 2014, and considering the new billion-dollar Amazon Prime Original series The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power debuted last year to mixed critical reception (and a lot of fan derision). Despite delays in production (due to unprecedented heart attacks) and the show being slapped with a $250 million lawsuit, Amazon is still ordering seasons.

However, if a good team with a solid script about the rise of Sauron as the Necromancer comes along — why not take a journey back to Middle-earth?

What do you think of new Lord of the Rings movie, and Andy Serkis joining as Gollum? Share your thoughts in the comments below!

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