Tolkien biopic lands Tom of Finland director

J.R.R. Tolkien.

J.R.R. Tolkien.   | Photo Credit: AP

Dome Karukoski’s film will explore the formative years of the orphaned author

Finnish filmmaker Dome Karukoski is set to direct a Hollywood biopic about J.R.R. Tolkien, the author of The Lord of the Rings trilogy. Casting is under way.

Online entertainment magazine Deadline broke the news on Monday and said that casting was under way.

“Dome can confirm the information in the Deadline article but he can’t confirm or comment on anything else,” said Helsinki Filmi CEO Annika Sucksdorff.

One of his nation’s most critically acclaimed filmmakers, Mr. Karukoski, 40, directed this year’s Tom Of Finland, which portrays the life of a prominent gay figure in the 20th century.

The Tolkien script, written by Irish director David Gleeson and U.K.’s Stephen Beresford, “explores the formative years of the orphaned author as he finds friendship, love and artistic inspiration among a fellow group of outcasts at school,” Deadline said.

The story tells of Tolkien’s journey into the First World War, which “threatens to tear the ‘fellowship’ apart,” Deadline added.

Tolkien’s experience in the war is said to have inspired him in his books. He had initially refrained from enlisting in the British army after the war broke out in 1914 and completed his studies at the University of Oxford in 1915 instead.

Bestselling tales

He eventually joined the army and was summoned to France in 1916. Tolkien taught at Oxford for nearly 20 years while writing The Hobbit and the two first volumes of The Lord of the Rings. The Hobbit was published in 1937.

Tolkien then wrote The Lord of the Rings between 1937 and 1949 as what was initially intended to be a sequel, but the story became much larger — and one of the bestselling novels of all time with more than 150 million copies sold.

Fox Searchlight and Chernin Entertainment have been working on the Tolkien biopic since 2013, U.S. entertainment magazine Variety reported.

(With inputs from PTI)

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Printable version | Feb 27, 2020 4:57:58 PM |

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