‘Tolkien’ Director Defends Biopic After Tolkien Family Distance Themselves From Project


Director Dome Karukoskis is doing a bit of damage control before his upcoming biopic based on famed Christian author J.R.R. Tolkien hits theatres this weekend.

An official statement was released by the Tolkien estate on April 23 distancing themselves from the film, saying “The family and the Estate wish to make clear that they did not approve of, authorize or participate in the making of this film. They do not endorse it or its content in any way.”

In a recent interview with Christian Headlines, however, the Tolkien director made it clear to fans of The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit that he took the project seriously and that it was not uncommon for biopics to seek the approval of the subject’s families.

“You try not to work with the estate,” Karukoski said. “And the reason is you usually start writing so-called winners’ history – you know, because even if it’s the nicest and kindest estate ever, you start servicing them and not the film. Nine out of 10 biopics actually are done without the estate.”

Speaking as a fan himself, he explained his choices and hoped that the family would enjoy the film after they saw it.

“I bet I read almost all of his books and many, many of them twice,” he shared. “I met with a lot of Tolkien experts. Tolkien’s family hasn’t seen the film yet. … I’ve actually offered to show them the film and explain why some of the poetic license has been taken. I hope the family would love the film once they see and understand it’s done with love and care.”

Tolkien hits theatres Friday, May 10.

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