The planned TV series of The Dark Tower will be a reboot, according to author Stephen King. The Dark Tower is King’s epic, eight novel fantasy series revolving around the last Gunslinger’s quest to reach the mystical tower. A movie version had been in the works for years, with filmmakers such as Ron Howard attempting to bring it to the big screen.
The Dark Tower film finally arrived in 2017, with Idris Elba playing Roland the Gunslinger and Matthew McConaughey as the villainous Man In Black. Despite the quality cast, the film met with weak reviews and underwhelming box-office. While a Dark Tower series starring Elba was announced before the film’s release, talk of it has gone quiet since it underperformed, and the actor himself has admitted he’s not sure about its current status.
Stephen King shed some light on the planned series in an interview with Vulture, where he also gave his thoughts on why the film didn’t entirely work for audiences.
"The major challenge was to do a film based on a series of books that’s really long, about 3,000 pages. The other part of it was the decision to do a PG-13 feature adaptation of books that are extremely violent and deal with violent behavior in a fairly graphic way. That was something that had to be overcome, although I’ve gotta say, I thought [screenwriter] Akiva Goldsman did a terrific job in taking a central part of the book and turning it into what I thought was a pretty good movie. The TV series they’re developing now … we’ll see what happens with that. It would be like a complete reboot, so we’ll just have to see."
While King came out in support of the movie prior to release, he has since confessed the movie’s PG-13 rating was probably a mistake. The Dark Tower novels are dark, bloody affairs while the film felt far too tame and generic in comparison. Given the relative failure of the movie financially, it’s unlikely to receive a direct sequel – even if Elba is hopeful for one – but a TV series leaning closer to the source material could be the ideal way to reboot the franchise.
Outside of a couple of under-performers in 2017 like The Dark Tower or The Mist television series, King is having a great year. IT is officially the highest grossing R-rated horror movie ever, Netflix movies Gerald’s Game and 1922 are receiving raves and TV series Mr Mercedes was just renewed for a second season. That's set to continue next year with see the launch of Castle Rock – a series set in the author’s fictional town – and a host of other exciting projects are in development like IT: Chapter 2.
Next: 1922’s Ending Explained
The Dark Tower series doesn’t have an airdate at present, but we’ll keep you updated with more information when it becomes available.