New report claims Disney ignored Tolkien’s Christian faith in biographical movie

in Disney, Entertainment, Movies, Movies & TV, Theater

Tolkien movie poster

Credit: Disney

A new report claims that “Tolkien,” a new biographical drama by Disney about the early life of the famed author and English professor John Ronald Reuel Tolkien deliberately understated the role of the author’s Christian faith in his personal and professional development.

According to Fox News, the film took Disney two years to make and promised to draw fans of the literary giant, who inspired the record-breaking “Lord of the Rings” movie trilogy franchise. However, from this report, it’s believed that the film might have represented the author’s professional life on screen but left out his deep religious faith and upbringing, which is believed to have been a major influence in the author’s famous writings.

Tolkien movie poster
Credit: Disney

According to the film’s director, Dome Karukosi, when discussing Tolkien’s religious faith and its representation in the film, the director stated: “Religion is so internal, it’s difficult to visualize. It’s like watching an encyclopedia.”

The director went on to explain that attempts to portray Tolkien’s faith didn’t work out as planned and also came off as “boring” in some scenes. In the end, these parts of the film didn’t make the final cut.

According to Fox News, J.R.R. Tolkien’s father died when he was just 4-years-old and his mother also passed when he was 12. After losing his parents, the author and his brother were raised by Father Francis Morgan, a Roman Catholic priest who was living in England. The two boys reportedly celebrated Mass with the prelate each day.

If Tolkien grew up with the influence of a priest raising him and his brother, it is understandable this type of upbringing would shape his writings in some way. However, it’s believed this film did not portray how instrumental this influence really was to the writer. Because of this, it could be fair to say that the movie might not have given audiences a proper look at a major part of the author’s life.

Tolkien movie poster
Credit: Disney

Writer Paul J. Batura of Fox News writes, “Tolkien’s life can no more be explained without his Christian faith than the history and miracle of America can be told and understood absent the influence and faith of the Founding Fathers.”

The writer continued that what happened to “Tolkien” is something that occurred with “A Wrinkle in Time,” another one of Disney’s recent films by a Christian writer, which Batura says, “deliberately excised the original author’s faith.”

Do you think Disney did “Tolkien” an injustice by taking out scenes depicting the author’s Christian faith? Let us know in the comments below!

Source: Fox News 


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    This is a Fox Searchlight film, Disney had nothing to do with its production.

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    I don’t really know much about Tolkien’s personal life so can’t comment on that aspect. But the director’s explanation is wholly unsatisfactory. If you can’t find a way to portray the moral and philosophical underpinnings of a character (be they religiously derived or not) on screen without it being boring, then you’re a bad story-teller.

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    Shanin Stringfellow

    I don’t know how you could read or watch the stories without seeing the Christian inspiration to the theme and storyline. The return of the King (Jesus returning) over coming evil (satan). Hollywood has sold its soul to the devil. Just the lost leading the lost.

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    Jacob L Grant

    If the director cant find a way to make the philosophical/metaphorical/spiritual underpinnings of a character interesting then he shouldn’t get the job. He thinks Tolkien’s spirituality was boring? Then I’d say that makes him a moron.

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    2 things

    This was a Fox film.

    The most notable founding fathers weren’t Christian. i.e. Thomas Jefferson

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    Couple things here:
    1) Disney had nothing to do with this film’s production

    2) This link is not a “report”, it’s an op-ed blog

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