[Update: The lead role of Roland was offered to Javier Bardem!]
Javier Bardem? Viggo Mortensen? It’s a good problem to have, deciding between Oscar worthy talent to lead your franchise. One of the most ambitious film and television projects to date is about to announce its leading star and poster boy, and fans of the Dark Tower novels are eager to find out if a member of the Hollywood A-List will play that man.
Producer Brian Grazer revealed on the red carpet for the Golden Globes on Sunday that sometime this week we will find out who they have chosen to play Roland Deschain, the last of the “gunslingers” in the adaptation Stephen King’s Dark Tower series.
MTV had a brief moment to poke and prod Grazer for some tidbits regarding Dark Tower and got him to seemingly spill that they have made their decision about who will play Roland, and that they did speak with previously reported lead candidates Mortensen and Bardem. The pair however, are just the two lead candidates who were mentioned alongside popular stars Daniel Craig, Hugh Jackman and Jon Hamm.
All of these actors can sell such a franchise on their own, but I am fond of either of the two top contenders having the part. There was talk before that the TV series, which would bridge the trilogy of films, would recast a lesser known actor for the small screen but director Ron Howard specified to MTV prior to the Golden Globes ceremony that the actor they choose, will play Roland in the movies AND television series – making this decision that much more important and ground-breaking.
If it is really down to Javier Bardem and Viggo Mortensen, my haunch is that it’s Viggo. Plus, he’s got less on his current schedule and he has a lot of fans gunning for him for this role. Who would you fantasy cast as Roland?
The Dark Tower series, which sets itself in a magic-infused version of the Old West, is described as Stephen King’s Magnum Opus and if any series is to get the treatment and attention Ron Howard and co. are planning to give it, this is the right franchise. Let’s just see who’s chosen to help bring it to life on screen. Stay tuned!