Finnish director Dome Karukoski will helm a biopic on J.R.R. Tolkien.
Fox Searchlight and Chernin Entertainment have been developing the project since 2013. Tolkien’s epic novels — set in Middle Earth — served as the basis for the film trilogies “The Lord of The Rings” and “The Hobbit.”
The movie’s script by David Gleeson and Stephen Beresford focuses on the author as he finds friendship, love, and artistic inspiration among a fellow group of outcasts at school prior to the outbreak of World War I in 1914. He served in the British armed forces from 1916 to 1920, then wrote the two novels while working at Pembroke College. Tolkien died in 1973.
“The Hobbit” was first 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 best-selling novels of all time with more than 150 million copies sold.
Karukoski’s credits include 2005’s “Beauty and the Bastard,” 2008’s “The Home of Dark Butterflies,” 2010’s “Lapland Odyssey,” 2013’s “Heart of a Lion,” and this year’s “Tom of Finland.” He is repped by ICM Partners. The news was first reported by Deadline Hollywood.