Nicholas Hoult is reportedly the front runner to star as Lord of the Rings author JRR Tolkien in an upcoming biopic, Tolkien. According to Variety, the film will focus on the author's life before he served in World War I in 1914, with Finnish director Dome Karukoski to direct. The official synopsis reads: "The script by David Gleeson and 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. This takes him into the outbreak of World War I, which threatens to tear the 'fellowship' apart. All of these experiences would inspire Tolkien to write his famous Middle-earth novels."
This isn't the first time that Nicholas has portrayed a famous author; he previously portrayed JD Salinger for an upcoming release, Rebel in the Rye. Fans were quick to praise the casting decision, with one writing: "As a researcher in old English at Oxford, I'm okay with this," while another added: "Be great to see. Tolkien led a fascinating life, and my favourite book is Lord of the Rings." A third person suggested casting members of the LOTR films to play characters in the film, tweeting: "I hope some members of the Fellowship are cast in this as Tolkien's WWI buddies."
Tolkien, who passed away in 1973 aged 81, is known as the father of fantasy literature after his hugely successful novels, The Hobbit and Lord of the Rings, helped the genre gain popularity. The novels, which have now sold over 150 million copies, have since been made into incredibly popular films starring Ian McKellan, Viggo Mortensen and Elijah Wood.