NewsWire: Tolkien Family Divided Over Film - Associated Press

The family of writer J.R.R. Tolkien is divided over the film version of the Lord of the Rings, a newspaper reported Sunday.

The Independent on Sunday said 77-year-old Christopher Tolkien, one of the late author's children, won't see or talk to his eldest son, Simon Tolkien, because Simon Tolkien supported the filming of the epic fantasy. The film is due to open later this month, and two sequels are expected to follow.

Simon Tolkien, 42, a lawyer, said he has been excluded from the family's business affairs because of his support. Christopher Tolkien has played a major role in overseeing the Tolkien legacy and reportedly disliked earlier attempts at bringing the stories to the screen.

"My father has refused to have anything to do with me or my son, who is 11, for three years, and he has rejected all requests to have a meeting. As long ago as 1999, it was my view that we should take a much more positive line on the film and that was overruled by my father. Following that, I was excluded from the board of the Tolkien company," Simon Tolkien was quoted as saying.

J.R.R. Tolkien sold the film rights for Lord of the Rings in 1968 for 10,000 pounds, the equivalent of $14,500.


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