The line between developing a beloved universe further and blatantly milking it is always thin.
Embracer Group AB, the new owners of Middle-earth, seem to be extremely ambitious about it, already mulling plans to kickstart spinoffs involving Gandalf, Aragorn, Gollum, Galadriel, Eowyn, and other iconic characters.
The new content wave is aimed "to provide new opportunities for fans to explore this fictive world through merchandising and other experiences", according to the statement by the company.
If greenlit, such spinoffs could mean the rebirth of the LoTR cinematic universe — and they might as well render it dead on arrival, depending on how good the execution will be, according to fans. Because Tolkien fans are pretty picky when it comes to things like that — and the reception of Amazon's massive 'Rings of Power' TV prequel illustrates it well. Amazon's endeavour has already been subject to criticism over its reliance on CGI and "failure" to respect Tolkien's legacy, with some fans believing that the upcoming TV show would be nothing short of an expensive fanfic brought to screen.
With potential spinoffs about Gandalf, Aragorn and other iconic characters, things could go different ways. Some fans refrain from being instantly critical of the idea. In fact, they admit that such projects could have huge potential.
However, other people are already up in arms about the idea: with "no confidence" in the new adaptations, they simply want media companies to leave the Tolkien books alone and maybe opt for some new stories.
Either way, Embracer has not clarified whether any of the potential spinoffs have received a green light, let alone providing details about cast, plot, or premiere dates. At this point, the company might as well listen to the fan feedback before beginning the production of the movies.