There’s been a lot of talk about Amazon pursuing a Lord of the Rings series, based on the iconic fantasy novels by J.R.R. Tolkien. The series of books told the story of the fantasy land of Middle Earth, where wizards, knights, dragons, elves, and hobbits battled to claim the astounding magical power of the one ring to rule them all. Though the books have been adapted into many movies, there was apparently a Russian TV series adaptation long before Peter Jackson’s live-action films graced the big screen.
The series entitled “Khraniteli”, or “Keepers in Russian”, was filmed at the Leningrad television studio 30 years ago. According to Esquire, the series starred Viktor Kostetsky as the wizard Gandalf, Georgy Shtil as Bilbo Baggins, and Valery Dyachenko as Frodo and aired in 1991. But then it seemed to vanish from existence, appearing to become a piece of lost media that may never be unearthed. But all of that recently changed when the series resurfaced online.
Check out the videos below to take a peek at this hidden gem of a Lord of the Rings TV series:
Of course, this is not really the first adaptation of The Lord of the Rings. Prior to this TV series. Ralph Bakshi had created the rotoscoped animated film “The Lord of the Rings” in the late 1970s which covered the first two books. The third book, Return of the King, would be animated later on by the Rankin Bass studio.
This isn’t the only time a familiar piece of media has graced Russian media as well. The HBO series “Chernobyl” was such a big hit in 2019 and Russia has taken note of this with its own film “Chernobyl: Abyss” the disaster picture directed by Danila Kozlovsky was filmed in Hungary at ORIGO Studios and featured scenes where the reactor is underwater, which required a new special water tank that was built at the studio. The film will be releasing on April 15th.
Russian films are also becoming a bigger deal in the country as with the blockbuster hit of “Invasion”, also known as “Attraction 2” (Russian: “Вторжение”, romanized: “Vtorzhenie”).
It is a 2020 Russian science fiction action film directed and produced by Fyodor Bondarchuk’s company by Art Pictures Studio and Vodorod. The action of the film unfolds after the events described in “Attraction” (2017). Many parts were filmed in Hungary at ORIGO Studios and the water scenes at MAFILM.