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Tolkien is a biographical drama about the early life of J.R.R. Tolkien, released in May 2019, by Chernin Entertainment and Fox Searchlight Pictures. It is directed by Finnish filmmaker Dome Karukoski, with a screenplay by Stephen Beresford and David Gleeson. English actor Nicholas Hoult portrays Tolkien in his early twenties, with Lily Collins as Tolkien's future wife, Edith.

The rumor of an upcoming Tolkien biopic surfaced in November 2013.[2] Filming itself began in October 2017, in Liverpool, England, and its first trailer was released by in February 2019.

In the UK, Tolkien was released on May 3. In the United States, a limited release came May 7, and the final wide release on May 10.


The film portrays some of J.R.R. Tolkien's childhood, the start of his love-life with Edith Bratt, his experiences in the First World War in 1916, and the forming of his interests in philology and fantasy conception. It features Tolkien's school-mates at King Edward's school that formed the Tea Club, Barrovian Society with him before the war, such as Robert Quilter Gilson and Christopher Wiseman.

A dragon, a Balrog's face, and vague battle scenes from the First Age of Middle-earth are shown as a few of Tolkien's visions during his weeks of combat in the Somme Offensive.


Tolkien earned a total of $2.9 million worldwide in its opening weekend, finishing ninth in the box office.[3] In total, the film earned over $9 million worldwide.[4]

It currently holds a rating of 50% on the review aggregator Rotten Tomatoes, based on 199 reviews as of June 22, 2023.[5]


Role Actor
John Ronald Reuel Tolkien Nicholas Hoult
Young J.R.R. Tolkien Harry Gilby
Edith Bratt Lily Collins
Young Edith Bratt Mimi Keene
Christopher Wiseman Tom Glynn-Carney
Geoffrey Bache Smith Anthony Boyle
Robert Q. Gilson Patrick Gibson
Father Francis Xavier Morgan Colm Meaney
Mrs. Smith Genevieve O'Reilly
Mabel Tolkien Laura Donnelly
Professor Wright Derek Jacobi
Hilary Tolkien James MacCallum
Young Hilary Tolkien Guillermo Bedward
Private Sam Hodges Craig Roberts
Mrs. Faulkner Pam Ferris
Young Christopher Tolkien Jack Riley



Tolkien (2019) - Trailer no. 1


Tolkien (2019) - Trailer no. 2


Tolkien (2019) "Off to War" clip


Tolkien (2019) Cast and Director pre-release interview