Recent rumors suggest that yet another classic character from the lore of J.R.R. Tolkien is set to appear in the upcoming Amazon Prime Video series “The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power.” That character is Gil-galad, the High King of Ñoldor.
Gil-galad was a key player in the Middle Earth’s Second Age, the time period of Amazon Prime Video’s new series. When Sauron first began handing out his rings of power, the elf-king was among the first to become suspicious of the dark lord’s intentions.
This later led to Gil-galad helping form the Last Alliance of Elves and Men, an army made up of Númenóreans (one of the kingdoms set to appear in “Rings of Power”) and Gil-galad’s Ñoldor forces. Both Gil-Galad and Elendil — the father of Isildur — were killed by Sauron. Nevertheless, the two severely injured the dark lord, leading to his temporary demise.
The character previously appeared, albeit briefly, during the prologue of Peter Jackson’s adaption of “The Fellowship of the Ring.” He was played by Australian actor Mark Ferguson.
Although the character’s death scene was cut from the film, he can still be seen for a few brief moments slaying an orc with Aeglos, the king’s famed spear from Tolkien’s lore.
The rumor of Gil-galad’s inclusion in “The Rings of Power” was originally speculated about back in July 2020 by TheOneRing.net as part of their San Diego Comic-Con panel.
Panel co-host Cliff Broadway stated, “I believe we will learn a lot more about Galadriel, Celeborn, and Gil-galad. Characters we have never seen. We see Gil-galad for maybe three or four seconds in The Fellowship of the Ring and his spear Aeglos.”
However, a new rumor from Fellowship of Fans claims to confirm the character will appear in the show going so far as to provide a brief character description as well as stating who will play him.
According to the rumor, American actor Benjamin Walker from Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter and Flags of Our Fathers will be playing the part. Fellowship of Fans also noted that this news is “not confirmed by Amazon as of yet.”
“The character portrayed is in their late 40s early 50s A man of elegance and great gravitas. A leader of his people, wise and pragmatic to a fault,” the description reads. “He isnt afraid to manipulate for the greater good. Looking for a classical leading man here.”
The description also notes that the actor needs to be “comfortable and adept with classical, heightened/quasi-Shakespearean language.”
During Gil-galad’s reign as king of Ñoldor, it could be argued that, on a few select occasions, he was manipulative. But adding that trait to the character description suggests manipulation will become a key aspect of Gil-galad’s character.
Portraying the elven king less as the somewhat-obscure legend described in Tolkien’s lore and more as a political figure makes sense, given the direction Amazon Prime Video wants to go with the new show.
Variety reported back in 2017 — before Amazon Prime Video announced the series — that CEO Jeff Bezos’s goal for the studio was to create “Game of Thrones”-like content.
As news and rumors continue to come out about “The Rings of Power,” it has become increasingly clear — this new Lord of the Rings adaption will be the primary vehicle for Bezos’s “Game of Thrones” ambition.
Various reports have already revealed that — in true “Game of Thrones” fashion — the show will feature nudity, love scenes, and modern themes not originally found in Tolkien’s material.
What do you think? Will Amazon Prime Video’s adaption of Tolkien’s work be faithful to the source material?