Friday, April 10, 2015

The Dark Tower Rises Again At Sony Pictures

Deadline is reporting that Stephen King's The Dark Tower movies are back on. Sony Pictures has signed on along with MRC to co-finance The Dark Tower: The Gunslinger. For the last three or so years producers Ron Howard and Brian Grazer have been trying to get the property off the ground using various script versions written by Akiva Goldsman. Both Universal Pictures and Warner Bros. considered making movies off of the ambitious series that might include a movie trilogy and several TV series. However they eventually passed, most likely because of the high costs involved for such an unproven property. The Sony Pictures version is a completely re-written script that probably drops the cost of the movie down and I suspect doesn't force a trilogy or other sequels unless the first movie proves itself at the box office. Basically the ambitious "Lord of the Rings" like planning that went into the series is now gone and I suspect they are going to do the series one movie at a time just like most franchises. Probably for the best as the studios are wary of spending a whole lot of money up front with no guarantee of return. While The Dark Tower has its die hard fans, it really isn't as huge a series as many think and probably the average movie goer has no knowledge of it. The books themselves, while imaginative, can be difficult to slog through at times. Also, in classic King tradition, the endings of each of the novels are weak with the final novel of the series having the kind of ending that only a literature freak would love. None are ideal for a movie so it will be interesting to see how things are re-written to please mainstream audiences globally. Of course there is still a long process to go. Sony may be willing but still need a director, cast, budget and a whole lot more so even if Sony were to fast track this, we are probably looking at a 2017 to 2018 release date at a minimum.