‘Dark Tower’ Producer Says Movie & TV Adaptation Could Still Happen

Published 3 years ago by , Updated February 15th, 2014 at 4:27 pm,

dark tower adaptation Dark Tower Producer Says Movie & TV Adaptation Could Still Happen

Director Ron Howard and producer Brian Grazer’s ambitious project, The Dark Tower - which called for Stephen King’s best-selling mythological saga to be adapted into a film trilogy and television series – collapsed this past summer, due primarily to Universal’s concerns about the costs of the duo’s cinematic endeavor.

However, just like Disney’s Lone Ranger movie returned from the dead recently, Dark Tower could be back on its feet for similar reasons – namely, the producers/creative minds behind the latter project have found a way to significantly lower the budget and address certain “creative concerns.”

Two of the main Dark Tower players moved on to other big projects after the King adaptation fell into development limbo: Ron Howard is currently shooting Rush and star Javier Bardem is set to begin work on the 23rd James Bond movie next month. All the same, Grazer is indicating that there’s been significant progress made on lowering the Dark Tower‘s costs – and revising some thematic issues that involve the (seemingly, ultimate) conclusion to the franchise.

Here is what Grazer said, while doing press rounds for the upcoming Tower Heist (via The Playlist):

“We found a way to cut out $45 million out of the budget [for 'The Dark Tower'] without changing the scope and actually giving it a good ending. In the $140 million draft, the ending wasn’t quite as satisfying. Now, we’ve got $45 million, $50 million out of the way and a really satisfying ending. It’s gonna get made.”

For those not familiar with King’s Dark Tower saga: The author began writing his fantastical allegorical saga back in 1982 (starting with the first book, subtitled “The Gunslinger”) and has averaged releasing a new installment every five years since – with an eighth entry due out next year.

Here is a semi-official synopsis for the first of King’s Dark Tower novels:

“The Gunslinger” introduces protagonist Roland [Deschain] as he pursues the Man in Black through bleak and tired landscapes in a world that has “moved on.” Roland believes that the Man in Black knows and can be made to reveal the secrets of the Dark Tower, which is the ultimate goal of Roland’s quest. The Waste Lands sees Roland and his fellow travelers continuing the quest for the Dark Tower. They journey through imaginative landscapes, over astounding obstacles, and meet with and confront a unique and fully drawn cast of characters, both human and nonhuman.

Mark Verheiden writes dark tower Dark Tower Producer Says Movie & TV Adaptation Could Still Happen

The Dark Tower is certainly the sort of vast-reaching epic that could be brought to life in fittingly grand form via a big-budget studio production – with a powerhouse actor like Bardem (who remains attached to play a somewhat older version of Roland Deschain) in the lead. However, seeing how King’s original literature hasn’t actually reached a true conclusion yet, there might be mixed feelings about Grazer’s promise of a new “satisfying ending” being devised for the movie/TV adaptation.

If the budget has indeed been lowered as much as Grazer says, then we’ll probably be seeing at least one Dark Tower movie come to fruition. From thereon out, it’ll depend largely on how well that film does at the box office – and how receptive fans are to the final product – before it becomes safe to say that more films (and a television series) are definitely also on the way.

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We will continue to keep you updated on the status of The Dark Tower.

Source: The Playlist

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  1. Bring it on! Lets see what they can do. I would love to see an attempt at this story and then pass further judgement afterwards. :)

  2. How do you come up with an ending for a series that hasn’t ended yet? Unless King is involved with the writing I think it sounds ridiculous. Even with the cuts I just can’t see this working. I admire Grazer & Howard for attempting to do something that has never been done but there are to many ways that this could fail and that makes it to risky. What if the 1st film bombs? What if it does ok but the series doesn’t catch on? How do you then justify a 2nd film? And to be honest I don’t trust Howard. In no way am I saying Angels and Demons and The Divinci Code were Pulitzer winning novels but they were fun and great reads and the movies were terrible. So Howard being involved in another book-film adaptation scares me.

  3. How does the series not have an ending yet? The new book is between 4 and 5. I will admit I haven’t finished the series yet. I am half way through book 4 (and at this point maybe waiting for book 4.5/8), but based on the logic that The Wind Through the Keyhole is between 4 and 5, unless there is a 9 eventually, the series has an end.

    • Do yourself a favor and stop reading it. Books 1 2 and 3 were phenomenal. Everything after that is such a let down. There’s a few good parts here and there in the last four books, but a let down nonetheless.

  4. I’m glad they’ll fix the ending! Really! King virtually destroyed his own saga by this nihilist cr*p which makes the whole saga worthless and a waste of lifetime in retrospect. If they manage to come up with a satisfying conclusion, bring it on!

    • Agreed.

  5. You lost me at “reworked ending”. But hey, I have a script here where the titanic doesnt sink, Jack lives and marries Rose and they live happily ever after. The end

    • Well said!

  6. As long as it still has the same story and they don’t alter it as bad as they did for ALOT of movies based on novels. If it is still has Javier, howard and Speilberg attached to the movie I am hopeful it will be good, cant wait for the movie (hopefully all 7 books get their own movies)

  7. BRING IT ON!!!!! These books are the best of all time. and I’m sure theyre are just talking about a satifying ending for the first film. theres no way they can chronicle the first seven books in one film. impossible. so I’m sure they found a perfect ending for between books 1 and 2. I have been anticipating this movie for years. JUST DO IT!!! Javier will be great and I am dying to see this finally put into a visual perspective. Just please dont mess it up. and Im sure after the success of the first one then the budget won’t matter for the rest of the films. I am so excited.

  8. just to clear things up…
    the book themselves DO have an ending. Its just a rebirth. i wont say much more, if you want to know do yourself a favor and read the books.
    I say we have faith, and lets see what happens.
    long days and pleasant nights fellow gunslingers.

  9. Wow, if they seriously think they can get away with changing the ending of the series (and there is an ending – duh) they are sorely mistaken. even though the ending is devastating at the time you read it, there really isn’t another way to do it, it’s a beautiful ending when you really think about it.

    • i know! it killed me when i saw it, but it was just Perfect!
      if they screw that up…theyre missing the whole freaking point.

    • No, not so much.

  10. Seriously Ron Howard needs to GTFO, he knows he won’t do the books justice. Very disappointed! Tell me he isn’t still thinking about Javier Bardem as Roland. I can’t even say that without laughing.

    • Josh Hollowy (sawyer) from Lost would be perfect.

    • I feel that Hugh Jackman should play Roland. Screw the budget and get Peter Jackson to direct it.

  11. Why do they have attached Bardem to Roland?
    Wouldn´t Jeffrey Dean Morgan be a better choice ? He´s even got the killing eyes…

  12. change the ending and they won’t come.

  13. This will be awesome, they should definitely cast Josh Holloway, (sawyer from Lost)

  14. Sawyer as Roland? Are you kidding?

    Viggo Mortensen all the way, sorry. He’s the only possible candidate to pull this off properly.

    And Ron Howard? GTFO. Seriously. I’d rather this never got made than a jobber like Howard got his hands on it.

    • hah yeah viggo mortensen would be great for the role

  15. The guy from stakeland would make a very good roland IMO

    • When it comes to the movie version of TDT, and the TV version, these names come to my mind for who should play Roland Deschain of Gilead

      TV: Nick Damici (if they are gonna cut back money, which for this project isnt a bad thing all the time, get him, STAKELAND)
      Jeffrey Dean Morgan (looks the part, almost TOO much like like Bardem)

      Movie: Javier Bardem (Looks the part, can be cold and is a great actor, why is everyone hating?)
      Viggo Mortensen
      Thomas Jane (I think that he would be a FANTASTIC choice)
      Josh Brolin (Mostly a wildcard I threw in)

      • Javier Bardem is not how King described Roland in the books! Roland is supposed to look like ‘Clint Eastwood’, with ‘bombardier blue eyes”, etc. Bardem looks nothing like the description. He could fit the rugged part but that’s about it. It’s like did Ron even read the freaking books? If Javier Bardem LOOKED more like the King’s description of Roland he could do the part. BUT he doesn’t.
        I say Viggo, but I know he won’t do another trilogy. Jim Caveizel would be my next choice. Right about now I’m just hoping this thing gets a new director. Someone who will at least stay true to Kings vision.

        Long Days and Pleasant Nights all you Tower Junkies

  16. There was some hope with Howard attached to it, 3 films each connected with a tv mini-series….but now none…..and with 50 million cut from the budget…..they are going to trash this great story…..especially with just one film……and Sandy Schaefer needs to do her homework…the series wasn’t started in 82 it was started in 78 in The Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction

  17. actually in the exsisting seven books there is as best an ending that I feel could actually be done. The next book from what I understand fills in a gap of time between books 4 & 5 but should have no effect on the overall end of Rolands quest.

  18. While I’m happy to see Disney movie forward with ‘Lone Ranger’ and HBO picking up ‘The Dark Tower’ I would much rather have seen Viggo Mortensen or Christian Bale cast as Roland Deschain although I will acknowledge that Javier Bardem has talent and is a very gifted actor but I don’t think that he actually fits the bill and that is simply in my humble opinion on the matter.

    While Ron Howard and Brian Grazer are great filmmakers I would have preferred to have seen The Dark Tower movie and television adaptions in the hands of Peter Jackson and Gore Verbinski.

  19. I just want to see the movie / TV series done right, no matter how long it takes.. it’ll be worth the wait. But Javier Bardem? No way! Viggo Mortensen or Hugh Jackman would make a waay better Roland IMO.

  20. I, too, am so excited to see this project come to life. Christian Bale was my favorite choice for Roland. But Josh Holloway from Lost would be better than Javier. Please stay true to the books….or don’t bother.
    Yes, I would prefer Peter Jackson, too. I hope they do not ruin the story….but why stall. If this is done right, they will be making an epic to rival Lord Of The Rings!

  21. Roland must have the Horn when the movies start.

    Though many of the same things occur, it is a different story told with moving pictures rather than text.

    The adapters should understand that unless Crimson is influencing the project — We do not think He is, as there are other things that demand His attention.

    This is not meant to say Roland’s fate will significantly change. The Tet Corporation remains unaware of what occurs within the tower.

  22. If you haven’t finished TDK, why are you commenting? Bale? Jackman? NO! that would be HORRIBLE. wolverine and batman? both characters RUINED by those two. Granted they are alright actors. But what’s next!? Ryan Reynolds as eddie!? Halle berry as Susannah?!

    No “A list ” actors! Although morttenson would be my first choice IF it was between the 3. But I mean, if you have ONE, in this story, you have to have an equal supporting cast. Which opens a new can of worms. Who would play all the other rolls young AND old. This is a vast story. (For those talking about but not reading the epic series)

    the fact that “hollywood” has no problem making blockbuster adaptations like the lord of the rings/the hobbit, harry potter, FRICKN TWILIGHT!!
    grinds my gears terribly. Granted the first the first two listed were great
    to so why not the dark tower? Because its geared twards an adult audience? Not tweens?

    And the fact they gave the green light on ben afleck directing the stand????? But not TDK? crap.

    I’ve read this series twice front to back and listened to the audio books. I am I HUGE dark tower fanatic. This is a cult masterpiece that deserves world wide credit and exploitation.

    Agreed, howard isn’t my first choice AT ALL. If anything id rather see peter jackson/speilberg do this project.

    And I understand they will make STUPID changes. But god, let’s get it going.

    But let me direct it >=] haha.

    And i must say again:

    IF THEY CAN MAKE A HORRIBLE STORY INTO A HORRIBLE TRILOGY AKA TWILIGHT.

    I don’t understand. I mean, I do, but its absolutely idiotic imo.

    Just let us have Roland and his ka-tet for the love of man Jesus here and now!
    I say Thankee sai.

  23. A. Hugh Laurie (Dr. House looks more like an adult Roland than any other actor in the world.. He is also an accomplished musician and thespian, has the eyes, and the exact build described in the novels.. long and narrow of hip)
    B. To the person who said the story did not have an ending, really.. it was epic and necessary.. What?? Should good just triumph and evil fail!! It is most assuredly about two things the journey and the balance..
    C. Multi year HBO hell even AMC series is the way to go.. Let’s do it right or not at all.. No one movie and lets see what happens..
    D. On a wholly different subject I would love to see a solid TV version of AXLERS DEATHLANDS

  24. I’m almost to the point where I don’t care who plays the parts, I just want to see the movies. Berdem is not a bad choice, but i agree, blue contact lenses would be a must, to play the part. For those who think the series dose not have an ending, denial is not just a river in Egypt.