The Embracer Group has acquired the rights to adapt famous books of J. R. R. Tolkien to films, video games, and other merchandise.
The Embracer Group recently acquired the Middle-earth Enterprises, a division of the Saul Zaentz Company. Middle-earth Enterprises is a company that owns the rights for most of J.R.R. Tolkien’s most popular works, including The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit.
That means that due to this acquisition, Embracer now owns those rights. The Saul Zaentz Company said earlier this year that they would be selling their rights for $2 billion, and Embracer bought it.
Although part of the acquisition procedure did not disclose the sum that they paid for those rights in their announcement.
According to Kotaku, Embracer Group AB now officially owns Middle-earth Enterprises. Middle-earth is the company who owns the ast intellectual property library as well as the worldwide rights to a lot of things related to the famous fantasy literary works of J.R.R. Tolkien such as The Lord of the Rings trilogy and The Hobbit.
These rights are stated to be stage productions, board games, video games, motion pictures, theme parks, and merchandising.
Aside from that, this contract includes the matching rights in other Middle-earth-related literary works permitted by the Tolkien Estate and HarperCollins. These works have not yet been reviewed, but the corresponding rights come with this deal.
According to the Founder and Group CEO Embracer Group, Lars Wingefors, “I am truly excited to have The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit, one of the world’s most epic fantasy franchises, join the Embracer family, opening up more transmedia opportunities including synergies across our global group.”
In addition, COO of The Saul Zaentz Company, Marty Glick stated, “We at the Zaentz Company have had the honor over the past half century of stewarding the Tolkien rights so that Lord of the Rings and Hobbit fans worldwide could enjoy award winning epic films, challenging video games, first rate theater and merchandise of every variety.”
The Background of the Acquisition
According to PC Gamer, the acquisition deal will not mean that the Embracer Group will own the literary rights of the works of J.R.R. Tolkien. The rights for the literary work will continue to remain a property of the heirs and the Tolkien Estate.
This indicates that Embracer Group will acquire ownership of the firm that holds the rights to adapt those books into films, video games, and a great deal of the other material that was mentioned.
According to the Saul Zaentz company, Middle-earth Enterprises will continue to operate independently under their existing leadership team.
However, they will be working closely with Embracer Freemode management and other Embracer operative groups to foster growth, opportunities, and synergies within the Group. This will allow them to continue to build and expand the great franchise.
What is Next for Embracer and Middle-earth
The acquisition of the rights is consistent with the IP-driven transmedia approach that Embracer has developed.
Both The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit are responsible for the creation of the fantasy subgenre, making them two of the most successful and longest-running entertainment franchises in the world.
Both businesses are considering the possibility of making more films based on well-known characters from J.R.R. Tolkien’s books, including Aragorn, Gandalf, Gollum, Eowyn, Galadriel, and others.
They also plan to keep giving fans new opportunities to immerse themselves in this imaginary world through merchandise and other experiences.