Two separate Tolkien biopics are currently under development.
The first film, known only at this stage as Tolkien, will explore the experiences of Tolkien’s youth which influenced his life-long sub-creative endeavours which popularly culminated in The Hobbit, The Lord of the Rings, and The Silmarillion. According to the LA Times, who broke the story back in November 2013, little more is known about the film and its scope as the production team have revealed few details to date.
As the title suggests, the second film, Tolkien and Lewis, will focus on the friendship between Tolkien and Chronicles of Narnia author C.S. Lewis. The twain were academics at the University of Oxford and were formative members of the informal literary ‘club’ known as The Inklings, who met regularly in Lewis’ rooms and various pubs around Oxford during the 1930s and 1940s.
According to the Hollywood Reporter, the film will appeal to a “faith-based audience”. Tolkien has been frequently credited as a key influence over Lewis’ movement away from atheism and towards Christianity.
It is unknown whether the Tolkien Estate is involved with, or has given permission to, either project.
Tolkien is being produced by Fox Searchlight and was written by David Gleeson. Tolkien and Lewis is being produced by Attractive Films and directed by Simon West. Both films are expected to be released during Easter 2015.
Daniel is an Officer without Portfolio and Trustee of The Tolkien Society. Elected in 2014, he is mainly responsible for the Society’s digital operations, including this website.