The Lord of the Rings is a book, divided into three volumes, written by J.R.R. Tolkien as a sequel to The Hobbit. The book is considered the ultimate high fantasy novel in history, and is now a classic.
The Lord of the Rings, and many of Tolkien’s other works, are based in Middle Earth, a mythical land that Tolkien created as kind of “mythology” for England. It features the creation of a Fellowship of the Ring, that join in a wild adventure of peril, riches, friendship, and the eventual defeat of evil in an ultimate battle. Today The Lord of the Rings is inspiration for anyone writing fiction.
It has influenced authors as successful as George R. R. Martin and J.K. Rowling, both of whom use their initials in pen name in part as a tribute to Tolkien.
Not only has “The Trilogy”, as it is commonly known, influenced many great fantasy authors, it has inspired many adaptations. Probably the most well known is the Peter Jackson’s screen adaptation.
The three filmed adaptations were met with wide approval, which was a first for the fantasy genre! They generated more than 3 billion dollars, and won more than 250 awards and 17 oscars. The movie adaptation of The Lord of the Rings has been hailed as the most successful trilogy of this generation.
While it was highly successful, it was by no means a direct translation from the book to the screen. Large parts were cut, and there were substantial changes. Yet, the film is still considered one of the greatest because the director, Peter Jackson, intentionally chose to create his “interpretation” rather than “translation” of the Trilogy. Not because he believed they should be changed, rather he realized that it would be necessary to create a good film.
While the books had to be pared down to fit into 12 hours or so (if you watch the extended version), Jackson tried to remain faithful to the themes of the story throughout. Audiences of both devoted Tolkien fans and newcomers to the Trilogy, seem to agree that the screen adaptation is one for the books. The filmed Trilogy’s popularity has brought even more fame to the novels, reinforcing their place in history as a classic.