The Rings of Power Season 3 Looks Closer Than Ever Despite Season 2 Release Date Silence

We still don't know when Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power season 2 is releasing, even as season 3 rumors intensify.

Balrog in The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power
Photo: Amazon Prime Video

Waiting for The Rings of Power season 2 feels a lot like Gandalf and Pippin looking out from Minas Tirith at the approaching fires of Mordor, a deep breath before the plunge. The Rings of Power season 2 wrapped filming last year and is reportedly slated to hit our screens in 2024, but Amazon has yet to announce a proper release date or tease anything from the new season beside vague hints from cast members last summer (like our interview with Morfydd Clark about what’s next for Galadriel). It’s been a long wait, with the last episode of the series airing in 2022.

But fans shouldn’t take the silence surrounding the second season as a sign that Amazon has cooled on its big-budget Lord of the Rings series. In fact, according to reports, the studio and showrunners Patrick McKay and JD Payne are already whipping up a third season of the show. That tidbit comes from THR, which reports McKay and Payne “have started to break the initial story outline” for a third season, suggesting the plan is full steam ahead for more Rings of Power at Amazon MGM Studios.

The report comes just as McKay and Payne signed a new, three-year deal with the studio, which will include more Rings of Power from the producer duo.

“We began this remarkable journey with JD and Patrick more than five and a half years ago and have never looked back,” said Vernon Sanders, head of television, Amazon MGM Studios, in February (via THR). “We continue to be amazed by the scope and scale of their vision and the enormous global success achieved by The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power in its record-breaking first season. We can’t wait for Prime Video customers to experience the epic adventure and high-stakes drama that JD and Patrick are continuing to build throughout season two and beyond. Naturally, the studio is thrilled to extend our overall deal with these brilliant creative minds as they continue to deliver on their passion for great storytelling.”

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Despite being Prime Video’s most-watched original series, the show’s first season received a somewhat tepid reception — its slow-paced storytelling emphasizing mystery box reveals over battles was flagged by many as its biggest weakness. Concerning viewership data released by THR last year also revealed that only 37 percent of US and 45 percent of international audiences actually watched the first season of The Rings of Power all the way through, suggesting viewers lost interest in the show before ever reaching the season finale, which also set up the plot of season 2.

But at the time those numbers were released, Amazon MGM Studios chief Jennifer Salke promised a second season with “more dramatic story turns,” calling it “a huge opportunity for us. The first season required a lot of setting up.”

Indeed, the season 1 finale did pave the way for a few big future events. Not only were the first three Rings of Power forged by Celebrimbor at the end of the season but Sauron finally reached Mordor, with the fall of Numenor and Moria also heavily teased. It all set the stage for the next phase of Sauron’s plan and eventually a final alliance of Men and Elves against the forces of the Dark Lord. With season 3 now also reportedly in play, it’s looking like we’ll continue to inch closer to that legendary event.