New Lord of the Rings movie tipped for 2026 release with Andy Serkis directing - all the details

Virgin Radio

9 May 2024, 14:33

Lord of the Rings: Return of the King poster, Gollum

Credit: Rex

It’s official! We finally know more about the highly-anticipated Lord of the Rings movie, including its current working title. 

In 2023, Warner Bros. Discovery CEO David Zaslav announced there would be a new movie in the fantasy series, but there was very little information to go off at the time.

In a new earnings call by Zaslav, the movie boss confirmed that the trilogy's original director Peter Jackson will be on hand as a producer, and “involved every step of the way”, while Gollum actor Andy Serkis will step up to the plate as director, as well returning to the iconic role.

The next Lord of the Rings is still in early stages of script development, according to Variety, but we now know the flick will be titled Lord of the Rings: The Hunt for Gollum and is expected to be out in cinemas in 2026. 

Jackson, alongside producing partners Fran Walsh and Philippa Boyens, said in a statement: “It is an honour and a privilege to travel back to Middle-earth with our good friend and collaborator, Andy Serkis, who has unfinished business with that Stinker – Gollum! 

“As life long fans of Professor Tolkien’s vast mythology, we are proud to be working with Mike De Luca, Pam Abdy and the entire team at Warner Bros. on another epic adventure!”

The Lord of the Rings trilogy became one of the most financially successful movie franchises of all time, grossing over $2.9 billion worldwide. 

The J. R. R. Tolkien adaptations - The Fellowship of the Ring (2001), The Two Towers (2002), and The Return of the King (2003) - were shot back-to back-in New Zealand. One of the most ambitious projects in Hollywood history, the trilogy picked up 17 Academy Awards, including best picture for The Return of the King. 

The Lord of the Rings: The Hunt for Gollum is expected out in cinemas in 2026.