The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power is about to hit our screens this Friday. The prequel series based on J.R.R. Tolkien’s novels is one of the most anticipated shows of the year. The staggering budget at which the show has been made, just adds to the excitement.
While it was already confirmed that the series’ eight episodes are going to cost a bomb to Amazon Studios, latest reports have revealed the final budget of the show, establishing it as the most expensive TV series ever made.
The Rings of Power is the Most Expensive TV Show Ever
As per a report by the Wall Street Journal, Amazon Studios have spent a whopping $715 million on the first season of The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power till now. This includes the $250 million spent on acquiring the rights from the Tolkien Estate and $465 million spent on the production of the eight episodes.
If we look at the per episode budget, it stands at a jaw-dropping $89.4 million, including the cost of the copyrights, and $58.1 million per episode considering only production costs. Either way, it becomes the most expensive TV show ever produced.
Stranger Things is a Distant Second on the List
The series at second place on the list of most expensive TV shows is Netflix’s Stranger Things, for which the streaming giant spent approximately $30 million on each episode of Season 4, nearly half of what is being spent on an episode of The Rings of Power.
The next on the list are Marvel shows aired on Disney+. Shows like Loki and The Falcon and the Winter Soldier cost nearly $25 million per episode. HBO’s The Pacific is being made at a budget of $20 million per episode.
Another fantasy-genre show, which has also been touted as a competition to The Rings of Power, HBO’s House of the Dragon comes in at a budget of $20 million per episode. This Game of Thrones prequel has been made at a bigger budget than its predecessor, which costed $15 million for each episode in the final season.
Disney+’s Star Wars spin-off The Mandalorian and Apple TV+’s The Morning Show have also been made at a budget of $15 million per episode.
How will Amazon Studios Recover this Humongous Cost?
While the budget seems exorbitant, the Wall Street Journal states that Amazon Studios should easily make a profit out of the show. There are 5.1 million Amazon Prime subscribers in the US alone, who spend $139 each other. Around the world, the tech giant has over 200 million Prime subscribers.
The budget of the show, $715 million, comes down at 0.15% of Amazon’s total earnings in the last year, a minuscule percentage, but can still be considered a high investment for a single project.
The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power premieres on Amazon Prime Video on September 2. The show will debut with two episodes and then follow a weekly schedule of airing one episode every Friday. The series is set thousands of years before the events of Tolkien’s The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings and stars Cynthia Addai-Robinson, Robert Aramayo, Owain Arthur, Maxim Baldry, and Nazanin Boniadi among others.