Warner Bros. has a Lord of the Rings fan film, The Hunt for Gollum, taken off of YouTube

With the news of Peter Jackson and Andy Serkis working on a Gollum spin-off, Warner Bros. has taken to removing a similar-sounding fan film from the internet.

gollum, lord of the rings, warner bros

While Amazon continues Tolkien’s Middle-Earth adventures with The Rings of Power series, Warner Bros. would run with their own rights to the IP, which would be parallel to the show — not intended to intersect. It was recently announced that Warners is bringing back Peter Jackson, who made his bigger-budget blockbuster career on the Lord of the Rings movies back in the early 2000s. Jackson will produce a film that Andy Serkis will direct, which is a Gollum spin-off, tentatively titled The Hunt for Gollum. A statement from the studio would comment, “We are honored they have agreed be our partners on these two new films. With Andy coming aboard to direct Lord of the RingsThe Hunt for Gollum(*WT), we continue an important commitment to excellence that is a true hallmark of how we all want to venture ahead and further contribute to the Lord of the Rings cinematic history.”

Meanwhile, there has been a Lord of the Rings fan film that has been available on YouTube for the past 15 years that also sports the title The Hunt for Gollum. According to The Hollywood Reporter, just a day after their movie announcement was made, Warner Bros. would have that fan film taken down. It is theorized that the fan film features an all-too-similar concept to the spin-off story that Jackson is developing with writing partners Fran Walsh and Philippa Boyens. The YouTube upload will only show a prompt that says, “This video contains content from Warner Bros. Entertainment, who has blocked it on copyright grounds.”

The Hunt for Gollum fan film was directed by Chris Bouchard and runs for 39 minutes. It was a popular watch for fans of the property as it garnered much praise and the view count had reached 13 million. As with many fan films, Bouchard’s video contained a disclaimer saying the project was a non-profit film that was made for private use and is not officially affiliated with the Tolkien estate, Jackson, or any film studio. The disclaimer included that the film was produced “solely for the personal, uncompensated enjoyment of ourselves and other Tolkien fans.”

According to THR, the fan film “was set during the opening act of The Fellowship of the Ring and filled in a quest that was only briefly discussed in Jackson’s 2001 film: Gandalf (played by Patrick O’Connor in the short) meets with Aragorn (Adrian Webster) and asks him to hunt for Gollum to find out more about Frodo’s magic ring. Aragorn has a series of adventures, traps and loses Gollum and gets attacked by orcs and Ringwraiths. Gollum is recaptured by the Elves of Mirkwood, and he’s interrogated by Gandalf.” It is not yet known what the plot to Jackson and Serkis’ film will be, but it is assumed it would focus more on Gollum himself with Serkis back in the role.

Source: THR

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E.J. is a News Editor at JoBlo, as well as a Video Editor, Writer, and Narrator for some of the movie retrospectives on our JoBlo Originals YouTube channel, including Reel Action, Revisited and some of the Top 10 lists. He is a graduate of the film program at Missouri Western State University with concentrations in performance, writing, editing and directing.