Getting audiences to get excited about characters who keep their secrets secret is a tough task for any creator. For The Lord of the Rings: The Power Rings, JD Payne and his team wanted viewers to be interested in The Stranger without giving away too much information about his backstory and true identity. To achieve this, they looked at some iconic people and projects that feature mysterious heroes loved by audiences.
During his appearance on Amazon’s official podcast, The Lord of the Rings: The Power Rings, Payne discussed how Charlie Chapman, The Iron Giant, and ET the Extra-terrestrial helped create the grizzly wizard known as The to sculpt Stranger. “We talked about Chaplin and Buster Keaton, and we talked about ET and The Iron Giant, which are silent characters that evoke a tremendous amount of pathos, empathy and emotion. We were striving for that kind of connection with the stranger,” he said.
That’s easier said than done, though, and Payne doesn’t get all the credit for bringing the stranger to life. The showrunner praised the cast for encouraging her vision, stating that the actors made the character feel “emotional and authentic.”