February 05, 2017

“The Dark Tower” adaptation officially dead

By Sean O’Connell
Hollywoodnews.com: The news is sad, but not very surprising.

Universal’s ambitious, multi-part adaptation of Stephen King’s seven-book series “The Dark Tower” is dead, as the studio made the hard decision that the project was too financially risky for a project that doesn’t have the marketing guarantee of, say, a superhero movie or a “Harry Potter” adaptation, THR reports.

Ron Howard previously was attached to what could have been a three-movie and two-television-season stretch of story that follows Roland, the gunslinger, on his life-consuming quest to reach the Dark Tower. It’s a brilliant story, and one that probably needs three films and two fill seasons on television. But it’s certainly a risky gamble, and an expensive undertaking, and if the studio doesn’t think it’s wise to jump in, then best that they pull the plug now.

What’s sad is that a “Dark Tower” project would be incredible … if handled properly. And as the “Potter” series draws to a close, it reminds us how inspiring (albeit difficult) it can be to bring a fantastic story to the screen. It’s not impossible. It just takes financial backing and creative freedom.

THR notes that this “marks the second high-profile attempt at a Dark Tower adaptation to hit a wall” as the first one “involved JJ Abrams and his Bad Robot banner.” Howard, meanwhile, will move on to “Rush,” a Formula 1 biopic that will star “Thor” standout Chris Hemsworth.

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About Sean O'Connell

Sean O'Connell is a nationally recognized film critic. His reviews have been published in print ('The Washington Post,' 'USA Today') and online (AMC FilmCritic.com, MSN's Citysearch) since 1996. He's a weekly contributor to several national radio programs. He is a longstanding member of the Broadcast Film Critics Association (BFCA), the Online Film Critics Society (OFCS), and the Southeastern Film Critics View all articles by Sean O'Connell Association (SEFCA).

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