A series to rule them? The long wait has finally come to an end, on September 2nd "The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power" will be released, the most expensive series of all time to date. But anyone who thinks that the competition will bow their knees to so much supposed fantasy bombast is hugely mistaken.
Also in September, albeit with a clear safety margin, it's back to the "Star Wars" universe thanks to "Andor". Meanwhile, viewers who expect another series about the life of Elisabeth of Austria-Hungary aka Sisi with "The Empress" can expect a different kind of power games. And even punks get their money's worth thanks to the mini-series "Pistol" about the notorious band Sex Pistols.
It is the series of superlatives: "The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power". According to a new calculation by the "Wall Street Journal", the first season of the streaming service Amazon Prime Video alone, which comprises eight episodes, cost around 715 million US dollars. Far more than initially assumed and consequently by an almost ridiculous distance the most expensive series of all time. Because if the numbers are correct, each episode devours almost 90 million dollars - in the Marvel series "Loki" and Co., on the other hand, it's a mere 25 million dollars...
A big risk for the company, but also a huge opportunity. After all, it's been almost 20 years since Peter Jackson's (60) "Lord of the Rings" trilogy found its crowning glory with "The Return of the King". "The Rings of Power" takes place 1,000 years before Hobbit Frodo (Elijah Wood, 41) destroyed the one ring. But the audience does not have to do without well-known characters: One of the central characters in the series is Galadriel, instead of Cate Blanchett (53) Morfydd Clark (33) now plays the mighty Elf. And of course the threat to all of Middle-earth is a well-known one: the beast Sauron.
For those who like Gondor, Rohan and Mordor as Elvish villages or who are generally more into sci-fi than fantasy, you could also find what you are looking for on Amazon Prime from September 8th. Then a new time travel series will start with "The Lazarus Project". Whenever a catastrophe occurs, the eponymous secret organization turns back time and tries to stop the disaster - something like in the series "Seven Days - The Gateway to Time".
And another promising agent thriller series starts on September 2nd: "The Undeclared War" with Simon Pegg (52) and Oscar winner Mark Rylance (62). The series is about the British secret service GCHQ, which has its hands full fending off cyber attacks from abroad shortly before the general election.
An unusual success story is now in its fifth round from September 9th: In the "Karate Kid" offshoot "Cobra Kai", the former villain of the original, Johnny Lawrence (William Zabka, 56), was quickly transformed into a hero. Ralph Macchio (60) can also be seen in his role as Daniel "Karate Kid" LaRusso, as well as other stars of the four-part film series.
Sisi is more in demand these days than it has been for a long time. After the RTL series "Sisi", she will be coming to Netflix from September 29 and played by Devrim Lingnau (24) as "The Empress". In contrast to the very romanticized depiction in the cult films from the 1950s, back then with Romy Schneider and Karlheinz Böhm, they wanted to "go a new way", as showrunner Katharina Eyssen (39) says. "The characters are complex, passionate characters, each with their own pitfalls."
Fans of the "Star Wars" universe will get supplies from September 21 thanks to "Andor". The series takes place before the events of 2016's "Rogue One: A Star Wars Story." It focuses on Cassian Andor, played again by Diego Luna (42), on his journey to becoming the hero of the rebellion against the Empire. Starring alongside him are Stellan Skarsgård (71) and Forest Whitaker (61), who will slip into the role of rebel leader Saw Gerrera, as in "Rogue One".
Things will also get rebellious in the mini-series "Pistol", which will start at Disney on September 28th. Oscar director Danny Boyle (65) tells the career of the British punk band Sex Pistols around Sid Vicious (1957-1979) and Johnny Rotten (66). The basis was the memoirs of Sex Pistols guitarist Steve Jones (66), among others "Game of Thrones" star Maisie Williams (25) plays with.
Finally, a special debut: With the thriller series "The Old Man" Jeff Bridges (72) finally celebrates his premiere as the main actor in the series from September 28th. In it he embodies a former CIA agent, Dan Chase, who managed to go into hiding for three decades. However, when a killer suddenly breaks into his house, he is forced to flee - which in turn calls his former colleagues from the secret service into action. In addition to Bridges, veteran star John Lithgow (76) also takes part in "The Old Man".