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A new trailer teasing the fiery conclusion to the first season of Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power was revealed during the cast and series’ New York Comic Con appearance Friday.
During their first panel appearance together since the series debut, the cast — which included Benjamin Walker (Gil-Galad), Charles Edwards (Celebrimbor), Cynthia Addai-Robinson (Míriel), Daniel Weyman (the Stranger), Sara Zwangobani (Marigold Brandyfoot), Nazanin Boniadi (Bronwyn) and Leon Wadham (Kemen) — sat down for a nearly hour-long discussion moderated by Felicia Day. (Showrunners and executive producers J.D. Payne and Patrick McKay were not present as both are in London shooting the show.)
It also featured a sneak peek at the upcoming Oct. 14 finale with a special trailer, which includes never-before-seen footage from the episode, along with a brief NYCC exclusive clip featuring an exchange between Walker’s Gil-Galad and Edwards’ Celebrimbor about forging an item of power, with Celebrimbor proposing a crown as a potential option.
Ahead of the teaser clip, Edwards noted that “there is jewelry imminent” in the series, with the footage ultimately revealing that after “exhausting every possible solution,” the manner of the object they wish to forge “will be smaller than previously imagined,” but a shaped in a circle “allowing the light to hark back upon itself” in a single unbroken manner. First proposed as a scepter, Celebrimbor than declares it should be a crown that “would place all that power on the brow of the one being.”
While they dodged questions about who might be Sauron, the group did discuss the positive fan response as the show has rolled out (and interesting fan interactions), their characters’ relationships, filming during COVID, Bear McCreary’s score and Weyman’s experience acting without dialogue.
For Weyman, the act of performing without speaking like his co-stars is something made easier by the connection he forged with Nori actress Markella Kavenagh.
“Most of my scenes, in the beginning, were with her and we managed to form a connection, where I just felt the stranger could communicate without words,” Weyman said. “There was just an energy that’s coming from her eyes to his eyes and that moment in the crater when the flame happens and he sort of sucks in this fire and disappears — the clock each other — that was sort of the beginning for us, I think, as a team, and that sort of led us to be able to get through the rest of it.”
But Zwangobani wouldn’t let Weyman give all the credit away: “I’ve heard Dan Weyman speak a bit about his acting without words and he always talks about working with the amazing Markella Kavenagh, who is absolutely astonishing to work with. But I just want to say I watched him day after day doing his scenes with no dialogue and he’s a consummate performer in terms of being able to convey meaning without words.”
While discussing the finale, Addai-Robinson and Edwards revealed that some of the cast know little about it going in. “We’re watching along with the audience so we’re getting to enjoy these episodes as well,” Addai-Robinson said. “And for the series finale, there’s quite a bit that we don’t know.”
“When we shot the series finale — this is true — the scripts were sent out to the cast but with large portions redacted to make sure that even within the cast, some of us didn’t know what was going to happen,” Edwards added. “Some of us still don’t.”
Earlier in the panel, the cast discussed the process of filming the show during COVID in New Zealand, with Weyman noting that with prep, including stunt training, people had been working on the show for three years.
“Back in 2019, things really started to get going, and then, of course, the COVID pandemic hit,” he said.
“Thankfully we were in this wonderful place called New Zealand where people looked after us incredibly and we were able to keep going. They didn’t have COVID. They worked very hard and we were able to keep shooting and it was like a different world and it was incredible — a phenomenal place to film.”
Recurring points for the entire cast were the craft and production work on the show, from directing to stunts to costuming. When addressing whether he is among the cast members who wear a corset for the show, Walker clarified that he does. “I can’t complain about it because women were forced to wear them for 100 years, but it’s really uncomfortable,” he sad. “It’s also a testament to the support we had from the creative team around us. I mean, Kate Hawley built a costume that when you put it on, whether you like it or not, you feel like the king.”
As part of the NYCC event, Day also revealed a special podcast trailer for The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power Official Podcast, an eight-episode series produced in conjunction with Wondery and available through Amazon Music. Serving as its host, Day will take fans behind-the-scenes with exclusive cast and crew interviews exploring what it takes to bring Middle-Earth to life. Guests include Morfydd Clark, Owain Arthur, Payne and McKay.
Earlier in the day, Amazon unveiled “Where the Shadows Lie,” a new song from Fiona Apple for the series, inspired By J.R.R. Tolkien’s Ring-verse poem and written by series composer McCreary. An instrumental version of the track appeared in the first episode, with the intention of eventually using the same motif for the season finale song and, as the Rings of Power showrunners and EPs said in a statement, “in the years to come” as music that ties into the show’s storytelling beyond its debut run.
According to McCreary, it was “strategically withheld” from the season one soundtrack in order to avoid its significance being spoiled in earlier episodes. “The musical legacy of The Lord of the Rings brings to mind ethereal vocals carrying lyrical melodies over evocative harmonies, so it was my natural inclination to compose such a song for The Rings of Power,” said McCreary, who added that he wrote the song “for the magic of mithril, for the sinister machinations of Sauron, and for his land of Mordor.”
He added: “Inarguably one of the definitive musical voices of her generation, Fiona brought new depths and narrative intention to the song’s unique combination of my haunting melody and Tolkien’s ominous text.”
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