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The Extreme Lengths The Rings Of Power Went To In Order To Keep The Show A Secret

Media leaks fuel the pop culture 24-hour news cycle. It gives us all something to talk about, and something to hold opinions upon, that isn't inherently disastrous and world changing. Of course, some opinions still find a way to be both of those things, but that's a topic for another day. 

For now, it's more relevant to discuss the ways that studios combat the immediate release of news. After all, such leaks required "Spider-Man: No Way Home" star Andrew Garfield to lie again and again, up and down and backwards, for the better part of the last two years, all in the name of preserving the cinematic experince. In this way, Amazon's new streaming series, "The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power" — which after a long, long wait, is finally releasing new episodes every week — created a precedent for ultimate secrecy from the start. 

Much like poor Garfield, the measures they required were, by any metric, extreme. Let's take a look. 

Amazon's security is ... excessive

In an interview with the Hollywood Reporter, Jennifer Salke — the current chief of Amazon Studios — explained the extensive lengths which the creative team for "The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power" went through to prevent story leaks. She said, "There's a fantastic writers room working under lock and key. They're already generating really exciting material. They're down in Santa Monica. You have to go through such clearance, and they have all their windows taped closed. And there's a security guard that sits outside, and you have to have a fingerprint to get in there, because their whole board is up on a thing of the whole season."

On the level, while this showcases due diligence to protecting the story, and anything based on Tolkien's work deserves such energetic respect, this situation gives off the same kind of energy as every single Young Adult fantasy novel villain compound. Imagine being in that room and watching as some guy in a maintenance uniform go at the windows with a roll of duct tape. It's just a bit dramatic, right? And yet, Amazon is by no means an outlier, here. Drastic measures are increasingly commonplace in Hollywood when it comes to maintaining secrecy. As Screen Rant noted in 2019, Marvel Studios does much the same on a day-to-day basis, and "Moon Knight" actor Ethan Hawke once confirmed that Marvel required "ten thousand NDAs."

And at this point, and when you factor in how every single individual has a camera and social media sitting snuggly in their pockets, the excessive measures start to make a little more sense.