How does one follow up the most ambitious trilogy in film
history? Barrie Osborne, producer of “The Lord of the
Rings” saga, will probably bust out his calculator and take a
few weeks to count his money. “The Return of the King,”
the trilogy’s final film, has grossed $329 million to date,
bringing the trilogy’s total revenue to around $1

Mira Levitan
Mira Levitan
Ozzie, you are the light of my life. (Courtesy of New Line)

With the awards season rapidly approaching, “ROTK”
is poised for non-monetary success as well. Osborne, however, said
he is not overly concerned with collecting statues. “Winning
is somewhat a fluke. It’s somewhat dependent upon what other
films you’re up against, and it also depends on what is
happening in the world that might make your film resonant more than
another film.”

While noting that peer recognition is an honor, Osborne gives
other reasons for taking pride in his work: “I think that
making a film that people identify with and relate to is really
what we want to achieve.” Of course, he had plenty of
assistance accomplishing these goals.

Osborne acknowledges “Rings” director, Peter
Jackson’s help in reaching this aim. “In the midst of
what is an epic production there are quiet, dramatic (and)
compelling dramatic moments, and that’s a real tribute to
Peter, who created these three-dimensional characters.”

Given the success of LOTR, it’s hard to imagine what
Osborne could do to top it. One rumored possibility is a film
adaptation of the trilogy’s prequel, “The
Hobbit.” Osborne, however, does not see that as an immediate
possibility: “For me right now, I want to gain some
perspective, take a break from Middle Earth … regain some
insight and then perhaps tackle it.”

Fans need not worry about losing Osborne’s talents. He
plans on returning to the fantasy genre, though he has not yet said
what his next adventure film will be. “I have been approached
with some projects that might be appealing to me. I’ve got to
do a little more homework on them.”

In the meantime, “Rings” followers will have to wait
for the DVD version of ROTK. Osborne raves about his DVD production
team and plans to appear in several interviews. He has also
indicated that numerous compelling, deleted scenes would be
included in the DVD.

Regarding future projects, Osborne does not expect any films of
the same magnitude as “Lord of the Rings.” “I
don’t think anyone will ever make a trilogy like it again. I
think it’s a unique moment in cinema history.”

So what blockbuster has Osborne lined up to set new box office
records? Surprisingly, Osborne is set to produce a small production
called “Jindabyne” and a film loosely based on the
tooth fairy called “Magic Fingers.”

How can he move from producing one of the most epic films in
history to comparatively small projects? “I think you look
for a story that attracts you,” Osborne said. “It may
be a very small one.”

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