British filmmaker Simon West (‘Con Air,’ ‘The Expendables 2,’ ‘The Mechanic’) has been tapped by Attractive Films to take the helm of ‘Tolkien & Lewis,’ an indie drama that reveals the faith, friendship and rivalry between J.R.R. Tolkien and ‘Chronicles of Narnia’ author C.S. Lewis.
Per THR, the film is set largely at the beginning of World War II and centres on “Tolkien’s relationship with his University of Oxford colleague C.S. Lewis, whom Tolkien, a devout Catholic, converted to Christianity. The formerly agnostic Lewis’ newfound faith infused his most popular books, including ‘The Chronicles of Narnia’ series, while Lewis in turn encouraged Tolkien to finish his The Lord of the Rings volumes, which were decades in the making.” However, the writers soon found their friendship poisoned by jealousy, paranoia and creative and religious differences.
“Lewis becoming the poster boy for Christianity upset Tolkien,” Attractive headhoncho Wernher Pramschufer told THR. “And obsessive genius Tolkien is blocked, terrified of finishing The Fellowship of the Ring, for fear of the strange, psychotic visions which torture him.”
The film is not to be confused with 20th Century Fox’s competing project ‘Tolkien’ that has Irish writer David Gleeson penning the script.