Wed
Aug 22 2012 11:33am
Hollywood Drops The Dark Tower (Yet Again): Stephen King Will Not Be Pleased

Crushing news for fans of Stephen King: Warner Bros. has reportedly passed on the long-awaited, much-hyped adaptation of King’s genre-bending Dark Tower series…making it the second time in just over a year that the project has been dumped. Last summer, Universal also jettisoned the project, which includes three feature films and two limited-run television series. Though fans were temporarily disappointed by the announcement, Warner Bros. stepped in and picked up the deal, keeping director Ron Howard, mega-producer Brian Grazer, and Oscar-winning screenwriter Akiva Goldsman on board, with Russell Crowe heavily rumored (though never confirmed) for the lead role of Roland Deschain.

King himself had even signed on as producer, releasing a statement early on indicating his faith in the original project:

I've been waiting for the right team to bring the characters and stories in these books to film and TV viewers around the world. Ron, Akiva, Brian [Grazer] along with Universal and NBC have a deep interest and passion for The Dark Tower series and I know that will translate into an intriguing series of films and TV shows that respect the origins and the characters in The Dark Tower that fans have come to love.

In both cases, the studios seemed to have balked at the enormous cost involved, in spite of all the star power behind the adaptation and the immense popularity of the series itself, which has sold more than 30 million copies since the first book was released in 1982.

Here on Tor.com, where we’ve been reading The Dark Tower along with Constant Reader Suzanne Johnson and arguing over the ideal casting choice for the enigmatic Roland Deschain for months and months, we have to admit to feeling more than a little let down by this latest development, just when it seemed that the project had finally gotten off the ground. But there may be a silver lining: Deadline and several other outlets are already reporting that Media Rights Capital, which recently had a surprise hit with Ted, is in “serious talks” to finance and distribute the adaptation.

Fingers crossed, and if it happens, let’s hope this deal finally sticks.


Stubby the Rocket is Tor.com's mascot. All work and no Dark Tower movie make Stubby something something.

9 comments
A.J. Bobo
1. Daedylus
I don't have a problem with it not being made, personally. I figure this is one of those stories like Ender's Game or Lord of the Rings. Do it right, or don't do it at all.

(I know that some of you will take issue with what Jackson did with Lord of the Rings, but I think it got it right.)
Emilyann
2. Emilyann
Wow. What a mess. Dark tower is my husbands favorite series so this is quite annoying to him. And my goodness, if King has such a difficult time translating this popular series to film, there's just no hppe for the rest of us. Yikes. I hope we heR better news down the road from Media Rights Capital.

http://anythingimagined.blogspot.com/?m=0
Marcus W
3. toryx
As a fan of both Stephen King and the DT series, I'm not disappointed at all. Personally, I can't imagine anyone making a movie or tv series out of those novels without disappointing me in the progress.

And Russell Crowe as Roland? No thank you.
Katie McNeal
4. Katiya
I love when something I love can come to a new group of fans, and being able to visualize is something I've always enjoyed, even when they get it wrong. I think it's awesome that they keep trying to go there, but unfortunately, I'm going to let my hope balloon deflate on this one. That way, if it DOES go through, I'll be pleasantly surprised, but I'm not hanging my hat on it.
Emilyann
5. dhamme
Russell Crowe is a poor choice for Roland.

I nominate Hugh Jackman AND Clint Eastwood (mid- and old-age)

and of course, Stephen King as 'Himself'
Emilyann
6. Improbable Joe
Anyone who says "enormous cost" in relation to this adaptation is by definition the wrong person for the job. Someone like Robert Rodriguez could probably do the entire project for less than the last Transformers travesty. I've read every book at least twice, and the first four books at least 3-4 times each, and there's very little in them that requires the enormous budgets people are talking about.
Emilyann
7. jmurphy
Three movies and two tv series? So, five-six years total? Where are they going to find an 11 year old kid who still looks eleven after six years?
Emilyann
8. quilciri
I think the only way to cast this series is to do it with almost all unknowns and C-listers. The actors would need to BE the characters, not "Russel Crowe or Javier Bardem AS Roland Deschain."

Rather Than try to pick Roland out of a list of hollywood Celebs, the VERY first step taken in casting Should be to hire Nina Gold and Robert Sterne. These are the two people responsible for the huge and stunning cast of relative unknowns in Game of Thrones.
Emilyann
9. Patrick91
I like many am in love with this series, and I would love to see an adaptation of these books. This could be a major shot in the dark but has anyone thown around the idea of computer animation. I'm not saying something cheesy but like high quality 3D animation. Almost like the kind of animation SK.com used for disocordia, or like the final fantasy movies. It would allow for the visual creation of Kings DT universe as well as take care of certain road blocks that keep the series from ever getting made, like the issue with Jake needing to look basically 11 though the whole series. Animated characters dont have to age. With the advancements that have been made with CG it might actually be at least a good discussion point.

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