Lord of the Rings script leaked to end Weinstein collaboration | NOW

The team behind the Lord of the Ringsmovies, the script leaked on purpose at the time, in order to end the collaboration with Miramax, the production company of Harvey and Robert Weinstein. The plans the duo had for the filming of the book series did not match those of director Peter Jackson, so the plan was made up.

As a result of a previous agreement that Jackson made with Harvey Weinstein, he was allowed to use the Miramax company with his company Miramax The Lord of the Ringsmake movies. However, the producer decided that two films would be made instead of three and that the total budget would consist of 75 million dollars (more than 62 million euros).

Weinstein hid this relatively low budget for a long time, until Jackson and his colleagues discovered this to their dissatisfaction. Someone on their team leaked Jackson’s script and his writing partner Fran Walsh to journalist Drew McWeeny, who worked for the then popular blog Ain’t It Cool News. More than twenty years later, McWeeny tells his story.

“The Weinstein brothers didn’t understand Tolkien’s work. The team felt they were making something fantastic, but they feared they couldn’t find a studio to take over production,” McWeeny writes. It was therefore decided to leak the script anonymously so that other studios could read it as well.

By leaking the script, the writing team hoped to generate attention from other production companies, in the hope that someone would have more money to spend on making the films. That worked: New Line Cinema made a higher offer and ultimately spent $ 281 million on the three Lord of the Ringsmovies, almost the fourfold budget Weinstein had in mind for two movies.

Jackson eventually won an Oscar for his directorial work. In total, the film series won seventeen Oscars.


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