Pre-production and development on the movie adaptation of Stephen King’s The Dark Tower novel series was a start and stop process for so long, it’s somewhat surprising that the actual filming process has gone so smoothly – and so quickly. Director Nikolaj Arcel began principal photography on the project back in April of this year, with Idris Elba and Matthew McConaughey starring as (in turn) “The Gunslinger”, Roland Deschain, and his enemy, The Man in Black; not to mention, the February 2017 theatrical release date looming over their heads.
King and The Dark Tower cast/crew have kept the conversation about the film going for months now through the power of social media updates, teases, and interviews. We now have confirmation that filming (at least, the main chunk of it) on the movie is done, ahead of its first official footage being unveiled for the public to check out for itself this October.
Elba, while participating in an impromptu Twitter Q&A, confirmed that “I’m done filming [The Dark Tower], spoke to the director the other day and he said the edit is coming along really well.”
Based on Elba’s comment, it sounds like principal photography on The Dark Tower in general is done now; meaning that post-production and the reshoots (or “pickup photography”) the are customary for tentpoles of this nature are next on the to-do list. Those reshoots will presumably take place in South Africa, where the bulk of production on The Dark Tower was based (save for the scenes filmed in New York). South Africa will be bringing the setting of The Dark Tower – an Old West-inspired wasteland – to life on the big screen in Arcel’s film adaptation.
The basic setup for The Dark Tower movie is the same as that for King’s source material; namely, Deschain is on a quest to find the legendary Dark Tower and, in turn, save his dying world – something that The Man in Black opposes. However, The Dark Tower will be throwing some curveballs at those who have read the source books – in no small part, because the movie is actually a sequel to the novels (and not simply a straight-forward cinematic adaptation of King’s literature), in a manner of speaking.
It may prove to be for the best that The Dark Tower isn’t a conventional adaptation – not only because its approach will allow the film to buck longtime fans’ expectations about where the plot is going (and when certain characters enter the story), at that. With such talented filmmakers as J.J. Abrams and Ron Howard having tried, but ultimately failed, to get this project off the ground over the past decade, it sounds like Arcel (A Royal Affair) and his co-writers here (including, I Am Legend screenwriter Akiva Goldsman and Amazing Spider-Man 2 co-writer Jeff Pinkner) had to go outside the box, in order to finally crack this particularly-challenging nut.
Question is, did the filmmakers do an especially good job of cracking the nut that is The Dark Tower. Fortunately, we won’t have to wait much longer to see some actual footage from the movie, now that editing is properly underway and the first preview is less than two months out (from the time of writing this).
The Dark Tower opens in U.S. theaters on February 17th, 2017.
Source: Idris Elba