Amazon has announced a new director that will be working on its upcoming Middle-earth series: Charlotte Brändström, who has previously directed on Amazon’s The Man in the High Castle, and Netflix’s The Witcher and Jupiter’s Legacy.
Brändström joins two other announced directors, Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom’s J.A. Bayona and Wayne Che Yip, who’s directed on Deadly Class, Doctor Who, Doom Patrol, and Amazon’s forthcoming adaptation of The Wheel of Time.
In a statement, Brändström says that she’s “very excited to be guided through Middle-earth by JD’s and Patrick’s vision and immerse myself in the iconic world of J.R.R. Tolkien. It’s a great privilege to be in New Zealand to work with Amazon Studios’ outstanding ensemble of creative talents,” and that “there are countless things still to see in Middle-earth, and great works to do.“
Word of Brändström’s arrival comes shortly after Amazon disclosed the staggering cost that it’s putting down for the series: $465 million for its first season, which is on top of the half-billion spent to secure the rights to the series in the first place. Amazon’s Jennifer Salke chalked the cost up to the price of world-building, saying that it is “building the infrastructure of what will sustain the whole series,” and that the studio is positioning the series as a global event, something they’re confident in. The show has already been renewed for its second season.
There’s no word on when the series will debut, aside from sometime this year. The show–which still doesn’t have a name—will be set in the Second Age of Tolkien’s legendarium, and follow the rise of a dark force in Middle-earth, setting up the events of the Lord of the Rings trilogy.