A NEW movie focusing on the early life of Lord of the Rings author JRR Tolkien will hit cinema screens today.

The film, entitled Tolkien, explores the formative years of the orphaned author as he finds friendship, love and artistic inspiration among a group of fellow outcasts at school.

And it examines how the author was influenced by his time in the trenches in the First World War.

The Oxford Times:

Directed by Dome Karukoski and written by David Gleeson and Stephen Beresford, the film, made by Fox Searchlight Pictures, stars Nicholas Hoult in the title role with Lily Collins as Edith Bratt.

READ AGAIN: New movie about Tolkien's early years is out soon

Other actors include Craig Roberts, Laura Donnelly, Genevieve O’Reilly, Pam Ferris and Derek Jacobi.

After filming was completed Mr Hoult tweeted: “Can’t wait for you all to see this beautiful story.”

A spokeswoman for Fox Searchlight Pictures said earlier the movie takes Tolkien, an Exeter College student, to the outbreak of the First World War, which threatens to tear his group of friends apart.

The Oxford Times:

Some scenes were filmed in Oxford, along with locations in Liverpool and Manchester.

READ AGAIN: War exacted terrible toll on college students

It is understood that Tolkien’s family has not endorsed the new movie.

When he arrived as an undergraduate at Exeter College in 1911 he had no idea of the horrors that lay ahead for him and his fellow students.

Within a few years, he and his contemporaries were transported to the Western Front in France and and many of them did not come back.

The Oxford Times:

Tolkien survived and went on to gain fame by writing The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings but he never forgot his time in the trenches.

Tolkien expert John Garth, who gave a talk at Blackwell’s in August as part of Tolkien Day, is the author of Tolkien and the Great War.

He said the new film made ‘an emphatic connection’ between the author’s war experiences and his famous writings but misleadingly implied that the carnage 'stifled his writings'.

He added that Tolkien’s first epic, The Fall of Gondolin, ‘came spilling out of him in convalescence and hospital straight after the Somme’.

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Mr Garth concluded that the author, like other veterans of the First World War, was oppressed by his memories of the fighting but he had a gift for turning his nightmares into creativity.

Tolkien the movie is being screened at a number of different Oxford cinemas.

The Oxford Times:

It is not the only film project inspired by the fantasy author. Subscription channel Amazon is planning to bring The Lord of the Rings to the small screen.

After defeating Netflix and HBO, Amazon Studios secured the rights to turn the JRR Tolkien novels into a TV series in a record-breaking deal with the author’s estate, reaching $250m.

READ AGAIN: Amazon plans new series of Tolkien's The Lord of the Rings

Amazon is working alongside New Line Cinema, the studio behind Peter Jackson’s film trilogy, to bring it to the small screen. It is understood that the first season will not be focused on the War for the Ring and will instead zoom in on a young Aragorn.

Amazon Studios has committed to five seasons.

The Oxford Times:

Tolkien, an Oxford professor who was a close friend of CS Lewis, died aged 81 in 1973.

A major Tolkien exhibition ran at the Bodleian Library last year.