Get a first look at Sauron in Lord Of The Rings: The Rings Of Power as more details are revealed at SDCC 2022

The Lord of the Rings The Rings of Power
(Image credit: Amazon Studios)

The panel for Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power at San Diego Comic-Con 2022 has just come to a close, with the cast and creative key team offering up plenty of revelations about the new season ahead of its launch in early September. 

Cast members Morfydd Clark, Charles Edwards, Rob Aramayo, Ben Walker, Ismael Cruz Córdova, Charlie Vickers, Nazanin Boniadi, Tyroe Muhafindin, Daniel Weyman, Cynthia Addai-Robinson, Trystan Gravelle, Maxin Baldry, Ema Horvath, Lloyd Owen, Leon Wadham, Markella Kavenagh, Megan Richards, Dylan Smith, Sara Zwangobani, Sophia Nomvete, and Owain Arthur and showrunners J.D. Payne & Patrick McKay were all on duty as fans were given an extensive preview of the new show, which has cost a reported $465 million to make. 

Despite a new trailer debuting only eight days ago as part of Prime Day 2022, fans were treated to a second full trailer, and this time, Sauron, the villain who dominates so much of J.R.R. Tolkien's narrative universe, was on show. Click below to watch it:

Unlike the previous teaser, which did not give much away by way of plot, the new trailer offers up a lot of Sauron as well as the origins of Clark's Galadriel, the role played by Cate Blanchett in Peter Jackson's movie trilogy. Anson Boon, most recently seen in Pistol, appears as one of the physical manifestations of the Dark Lord Sauron, sewing mischief and terror all throughout Middle-earth.

The panel, which was moderated by late night host Stephen Colbert, saw the debut of five exclusive scenes from the show, including a first look at the prologue, while composer Bear McCreary, newly confirmed as the show's composer, performed live accompanied by an orchestra and a choir in front of a 6,000-strong crowd in Comic-Con's famous Hall H. 

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Payne and McKay opened up (via USA Today) about how they cast the show, revealing the extensive audition process every character went through.

"We saw hundreds of people for each role. Thousands total," Payne said. "We had two criteria: they had to be an excellent performer, and two, we had to look in their eyes and say, 'do they have Middle-earth in them?'"

Payne also expanded on the show's outline and how it differs from Peter Jackson's hugely successful movie trilogy. He added: “It’s a human story — how far into the darkness are you willing to go to reach the good. The world is in a different state, the Second Age. It’s about reintroducing this world and there’s a new evil. We didn’t want to do a spin-off — we wanted to find a huge Tolkienian epic."

McKay added that the show will have wide appeal, but won't skimp on scares, telling Hall H: "[We wanted to] make a show for everyone, for kids who are 11, 12, and 13, even though sometimes they might have to pull the blanket up over their eyes if it’s a little too scary. "We talked about the tone in Tolkien’s books. This is material that is sometimes scary—and sometimes very intense, sometimes quite political, sometimes quite sophisticated—but it’s also heartwarming and life-affirming and optimistic. It’s about friendship and it’s about brotherhood and underdogs overcoming great darkness.”

For more content concerning The Rings of Power, read up on how The Rings of Power will show us a Middle-earth we've never seen before. Alternatively, find out why Amazon's Lord of the Rings hasn't tried to copy Peter Jackson's iconic Lord of the Rings film trilogy.

San Diego Comic-Con 2022 continues tonight with Marvel Studios head of streaming, television and animation Brad Winderbaum and head of visual development Ryan Meinerding offering up exclusive looks at X-Men 97, Marvel Zombies, What If…? season 2, and more.

Come back tomorrow as Warner Brothers will be showing off Black Adam and Shazam: Fury of the Gods, as well as Marvel Studios head honcho Kevin Feige, who will be revealing new plans for the Marvel Cinematic Universe. 

Tom Goodwyn
Freelance Entertainment Writer

Tom Goodwyn was formerly TechRadar's Senior Entertainment Editor. He's now a freelancer writing about TV shows, documentaries and movies across streaming services, theaters and beyond. Based in East London, he loves nothing more than spending all day in a movie theater, well, he did before he had two small children…