Exclusive: Middle Earth - 20th Anniversary Collection planned for 4K Blu-ray release next year

Exclusive: Middle Earth - 20th Anniversary Collection planned for 4K Blu-ray release next year

We've been following a lead on this for a while and are now confident enough to share that to mark the 20th Anniversary of the release of The Lord of the Rings: Fellowship of the Rings all six films in the Middle Earth saga are coming to 4K Blu-ray in 2021.

Our understanding right now is that the new release will feature both the theatrical AND extended versions of each of the six films in a new set that could span over 40 discs in total. There could be also be a separate Blu-ray re-release of the existing 30 disc Middle Earth collection featuring remastered copies of all of the films but we're still trying to confirm this.

4K masters of all of the Lord of the Rings films already exist and our source suggests that a release of them planned for this Summer was dropped in response to both the Covid-19 outbreak and the imminent major anniversary of the first film in Peter Jackson's adaptation of Tolkien's stories. The Hobbit was filmed in high frame rate 5K - so this release will be the closest we've had to the shooting resolution, although 4K UHD Blu-ray doesn't support the higher 48fps rate that the films were shot in. The 4K releases will also not be in 3D as originally shot.

Given we've already had some pretty definitive releases of the films on Blu-ray we don't expect anything huge in terms of additional material to be released in this set other than the improved picture quality and sound that the 4K UHD format offers.

We'll be digging more into all of this and will hopefully be able to share more information soon.

For a full list of all upcoming releases for you to buy to own you can check out our 4K Blu-ray release schedule and DVD and Blu-ray release schedule.


The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring (2001)
Dir: Peter Jackson | Cast: Alan Howard, Noel Appleby, Sala Baker, Sean Astin | Writers: Fran Walsh (screenplay), J.R.R. Tolkien (novel), Peter Jackson (screenplay), Philippa Boyens (screenplay)

The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers (2002)
Dir: Peter Jackson | Cast: Bruce Allpress, John Bach, Sala Baker, Sean Astin | Writers: Fran Walsh (screenplay), J.R.R. Tolkien (novel), Peter Jackson (screenplay), Philippa Boyens (screenplay), Stephen Sinclair (screenplay)

The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King (2003)
Dir: Peter Jackson | Cast: Ali Astin, David Aston, Noel Appleby, Sean Astin | Writers: Fran Walsh (screenplay), J.R.R. Tolkien (novel), Peter Jackson (screenplay), Philippa Boyens (screenplay)

The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey (2012)
Dir: Peter Jackson | Cast: Ali Astin, David Aston, Ian McKellen, Ken Stott, Martin Freeman, Noel Appleby, Richard Armitage, Sean Astin | Writers: Fran Walsh (screenplay), Guillermo del Toro (screenplay), J.R.R. Tolkien (novel), Peter Jackson (screenplay), Philippa Boyens (screenplay)

The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug (2013)
Dir: Peter Jackson | Cast: Ian McKellen, Ken Stott, Martin Freeman, Richard Armitage | Writers: Fran Walsh (screenplay), Guillermo del Toro (screenplay), J.R.R. Tolkien (novel), Peter Jackson (screenplay), Philippa Boyens (screenplay)

The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies (2014)
Dir: Peter Jackson | Cast: Ian McKellen, Ken Stott, Martin Freeman, Richard Armitage | Writers: Fran Walsh (screenplay), Guillermo del Toro (screenplay), J.R.R. Tolkien (novel), Peter Jackson (screenplay), Philippa Boyens (screenplay)

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