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The filmmaker told The Hollywood Reporter’s Awards Chatter podcast this week that he “seriously considered” using hypnosis to try and forget all his work on his Oscar-winning films, and for a good reason: He wanted to watch them like a regular fan and enjoy a single unspoiled viewing experience.
“When we did the Lord of the Rings movies, I always felt I was the unlucky person who never got to see [them] as a coming-out-of-the-blue film,” Jackson says. “By the time they were screening, I was immersed in it for five or six years. It was such a loss for me not be able to see them like everyone else. I actually did seriously consider going to some hypnotherapy guy to hypnotize me to make me forget about the films and the work I had done over the last six or seven years so I could sit and enjoy them. I didn’t follow through with it, but I did talk to [British mentalist] Derren Brown about that and he thought he could do it.”
Despite Brown’s apparent optimism, it seems rather unlikely that such an effort would have worked, given all the years Jackson spent obsessively striving to perfect every detail of his trilogy — and it sounds a bit like the premise for Apple TV+’s workplace sci-fi drama Severance.
But Jackson added that he will be able to enjoy Amazon’s The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power without any hypnotherapy and is looking forward to watching it for that very reason (Jackson noted that Amazon Studios asked him to be involved with the new show and said they would send him scripts — but then never followed up).
Jackson’s trilogy grossed nearly $3 billion worldwide and won 10 Academy Awards. He’s an awards contender yet again this season for his acclaimed Beatles documentary Get Back, which was nominated for five Emmys.
The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power follows the forging of the original Rings of Power during the Second Age that allowed the Dark Lord Sauron to spread evil across Middle-earth. It’s set thousands of years before the events in Jackson’s trilogy. The show premieres on Prime Video on Sept. 2.
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