Idris Elba is still gunning for a sequel to The Dark Tower - despite the mixed reception the film has received so far. The Dark Tower is based on the epic fantasy series from Stephen King, which follows The Gunslinger Roland on his quest to reach the titular tower. The series ran for eight books, and over the years various filmmakers have tried to bring the ambitious work to the big screen.
Ron Howard famously tried to turn The Dark Tower into a simultaneous movie and television franchise, but after years of development those plans went nowhere. In the end, Nikolaj Arcel directed the modestly budgeted blockbuster, with a storyline that acted as a sequel of sorts to the books. The film has met with a mostly negative reception from fans and critics, and grossed just over $110 million worldwide; numbers that aren’t very encouraging for a hopeful franchise launcher.
Despite the numbers, Elba still wants a Dark Tower sequel to happen. He discussed the movie in a Radio Times interview, addressing the planned TV series spin-off and his hopes for a direct movie sequel:
“I think any TV series that is an offshoot from the film can have more time to explore some themes. I’d personally prefer to do another Dark Tower film, exploring some more of the gunslinger – as a film. I don’t know much about where they are with the TV show – but I think there’s definitely talks to try and do another one.”
Elba also spoke recently about the planned series, claiming he “couldn’t tell you” where it currently stands. Realistically, The Dark Tower franchise would probably be better suited to television, which could explore its world in much greater depth. Common complaints about the movie included its short runtime - despite the epic scale of King’s source material - and that the graphic violence and adult themes of the books were watered down for a PG-13 rating.
It’s a shame the film didn’t connect with viewers since Stephen King fans are currently enjoying a golden era of adaptations. IT has become a record-breaking smash, Netflix's Gerald’s Game and 1922 are both drawing rave reviews and television series Mr Mercedes has just been renewed for a second season. Given the modest box office returns of the first Dark Tower and the muted fan response, a direct sequel seems doubtful at this point.
Talk of a television series has predictably gone quiet since the film underperformed, but we’ll keep you updated on The Dark Tower franchise as more information becomes available.
Source: Radio Times