Lord of the Rings Fan Film Restored After Brief YouTube Deletion

Lord of the Rings Fan Film Restored After Brief YouTube Deletion

The timing seemed just a little too precious. A day after Warner Bros. announced it would be making a new Lord of the Rings film called “The Hunt for Gollum,” a fan film with the same name that had been online for 15 years was removed from YouTube. “This video contains content from Warner Bros Entertainment, who has blocked it on copyright grounds,” a screen capture on X read. However, a few hours after the takedown, the short film was restored to the site.

A spokesperson for Warner Bros. confirmed to io9 that the video was back online and that its removal was a mistake. Which, if you’ve ever posted something on YouTube, seems plausible. Videos are often taken down automatically for including copywritten content and if Warner Bros. started adding “The Hunt for Gollum” to those lists yesterday, a takedown over the next several hours would make sense.

Of course though, that’s just one possible explanation. Another could be that a person specifically had it taken down because it shared a title with the new movie, later saw that fans were not at all happy about that, and then they went back on the decision. Both would qualify as mistakes and it’s unclear which is the real reason. Nevertheless, it’s over and it’s back.

“We’re back, thanks to WB for being so understanding to us as fans and artists,” a new comment from the film’s main channel, Independent Online Cinema, read. “We’re very positive and excited for what the new movie will be at fan film [The Hunt for Gollum] HQ. Meanwhile glad people can watch this our low-budget effort at the story.”

Directed by Chris Bouchard, The Hunt for Gollum fan film is a “fan-produced prequel film based on Appendices in The Lord of the Rings and dramatizing Aragorn & Gandalf’s search for Gollum.” Warner Bros.’ version, scheduled for release in 2026, will star and be directed by Gollum himself, Andy Serkis. Whether or not it’ll tell the exact same story is unclear. Watch the short below.

The Hunt For Gollum – Fan Film

Want more io9 news? Check out when to expect the latest Marvel, Star Wars, and Star Trek releases, what’s next for the DC Universe on film and TV, and everything you need to know about the future of Doctor Who.

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