Sony, MRC Team on Adaptation of Stephen King’s ‘Dark Tower’ Series

Stephen King
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Sony Pictures and MRC will co-finance the first installment in Stephen King’s “The Dark Tower” book series, sources confirm to Variety.

The first book, “The Gunslinger,” has already been adapted by Akiva Goldsman and Jeff Pinkner. Goldsman and Imagine Entertainment’s Brian Grazer, Ron Howard and Erica Huggins will produce. Pinkner will exec produce.

Sony will distribute the pic, and the plan is for “The Gunslinger” to be the first in a series of films. MRC will also develop a TV series to go along with the film franchise.

“There are few projects out there that compare with the scope, vision, complex characters and fully drawn world that Stephen King has created with ‘The Dark Tower,'” Sony’s Entertainment Motion Picture Group chairman Tom Rothman said. “I am a giant fan. And, as Stephen himself does, we love the direction that Akiva and Jeff have taken. This is a great opportunity for a director to put his or her stamp on a cool global franchise.”

The project has had plenty of budget hurdles to overcome since Howard and Grazer announced their massive plan to take on the franchise when it was originally set up at Universal. The idea was that Howard would direct three pics. A TV show would serve as a bridge between series installments. Howard is now unable to direct, and the studio will be going out to filmmakers shortly.

The addition of MRC as co-financier seems to signal that budget obstacles may be easier to overcome this time. Actors like Javier Bardem and Russell Crowe circled the lead role of Roland in the past, indicating that A-list talent sees the value in the property.

“I’m excited that ‘The Dark Tower’ is finally going to appear on the screen,” King said. “Those who have traveled with Roland and his friends in their search for the Dark Tower are going to have their long-held hopes fully realized. This is a brilliant and creative approach to my books.”

Deadline Hollywood first reported the news.

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  1. Donna says:

    I think Lucas Bryant from “Haven” would make a GREAT gunslinger. no really, go look at him… he IS Roland. (He already has ties to King… Haven is based on Stephen King’s “The Colorado Kid”

  2. Barb prough says:

    Roland is an aged gunslinger! He is the Ka or father figure to Jake, Eddie, Odette and Oy. It can’t be some young pretty boy. Sam Elliott would be perfect. He has the look, the voice and the attitude. That is who I pictured thru all the books.

  3. Terry Gray says:

    Vigo Mortensson , would be perfect casting for Roland, I’m so looking forward to this movie

  4. Joseph Packer says:

    I think Anson Mount would make a helluva Roland. The role he plays in Hell on Wheels, and he’s got the skinny, muscular gunslinger look to him, he would do well.

  5. Lisa Crandall says:

    John Terry would have been perfect 20 years ago. He played Slim in “Of Mice and Men”. Always thought he would have made the perfect Roland, then. Maybe too old now. Dammit.

  6. Marti says:

    If your going to do the Dark Tower please stay with someone that most closely resembles Roland. I wish Clint Eastwood was a bit younger his looks his body style cries out Roland. Russell Crowe if he lost weight maybe. Javier Bardem is very handsome but for those of us who have read and reread the Dark Tower Series know he cannot be a Roland. The closest one we thought best resembles what Roland should look like is Daniel Craig not only does he have the blue eyes but the craggy facial features of Roland. I’m sorry Russell Crowe although a very handsome man has features that are smooth and rounded and he would be hard put to convince anyone hes been wandering for years. Javier Bardem is a bit to pretty to be the Gun Slinger. I know you all think your getting the best you can to play the parts but when you are a die hard fan of a book its very upsetting when you cast a person who is no where near what the character is suppose to be, like in interview with a vampire. Antonio Banderas is a handsome actor but as Armand he fell about fifty miles short of the target.

    • The soul of a Constant Reader cries out for what our minds have constructed because of the words we read. We have been day dreaming of Rolands world for years now. By the other comments I see that many had the same dreams. It will be difficult to transfer my love for the characters to people I never imagined would play them, never. The dynamic will not be the same, I fear that seeing the movie with the contradicting thoughts will just make me sad.

  7. Matt Asher says:

    Love, love, love the books. One of the best in his collection. He is a super-genius with words and capturing the emotions of Roland, Jake, Eddie, and Susannah…even Oy found a place in my heart. I just hope the movie doesn’t stray to far from the books. Fingers crossed.

  8. Becky says:

    So excited! Hopefully it is done right! Been waiting for years for this, always felt this would be Blockbuster!!!

  9. Georgia says:

    So EXCITED as I am a huge fan of MR. King and his fantastically entertaining works.

  10. Kasasafras says:

    I’ve waited a very long time for this. I hope it takes less time for this to happen than it did the books all to come out. Please don’t make me wait too long. You will need an actor who will want to own this part, love it and cherish it and carry it through to the end. Roland has some big boots to fill. I hope connections to all the other books that it touched will be there as well. What an undertaking! Josh Brolin would be perfect!

  11. Jessie says:

    Young Clint Eastwood type person, black hair. That is how I see Roland. Need someone good for Eddie, too!

  12. Pam says:

    I believe Lucas Bryant, already playing a role in a Stephen King adaptation, “Haven,” would portray Roland spot on. He has the ability to play the quiet, yet romantic, badass hero and has the most beautiful light blue eyes, like Roland’s.

  13. devaro47 says:

    As I read the series, I tried to envision the actor to portray Roland. Toward the last of the series, I definitely saw Vigo Mortensson in the lead role.

  14. Stephanie says:

    If you are serious about doing this, for the love of god, change the ending!!!!!

  15. Constant Reader says:

    All do respect to Mr Crowe but…..NO!!! Not Roland….he could be the man in black, I see someone more like Sam Elliott! Sam Elliott looks like, sounds like, walks like, and has the tude that I pictured as Roland while I was reading the books. please Mr King step in and change their minds!

  16. I think Jensen Ackles would be a great Roland

  17. i love Russell Crowe but no no no! Definitely not a Roland. Sorry Russ

  18. Linda Lady says:

    I think Jim Caviezel would be a great Roland. loved the books hated for them to end.

  19. Dave Shuck says:

    My understanding of Roland, having read the entire series close to 20 times, is that he is not only the gruff “Man-With-No-Name” character that we saw Clint Eastwood do or the reluctant hero “Max” from the Road Warrior. His deep loneliness and romantic core that he has buried deep inside are as much a part of him as his total bad-assery. He has just packed it away in his poke along side some dried deer meat wrapped in leaves. I hope that they get someone to play him who can embody Roland as more than a grumpy face. A Christian Bale with a stupid voice WILL NOT DO! Please, don’t fuck this up.

    • Constant Reader says:

      I agree, though admittedly I have only read the series 3 times I truly believe Roland to be one of the best written bad asses in modern times.

  20. chris says:

    Crowe would be perfect as Roland. Great to hit the big screen, a miniseries scope and budget just wouldn’t be able to do it justice. It would be huge if Howard was able to direct, he’s been behind this project for years. Done right, this could stand up to the Hoobit/Ring series.

  21. Jensen Ackles is phenomenally brilliant as Roland

  22. jmasseysr says:

    This can be the greatest movie 🎥 adaptation of a sci-fi literary series since King’s “THE STAND” ❤ I still remember when CBS broadcast King’s “Golden Years” & then pulled the plug despite a rabidly loyal & growing fan base. WITH DARK TOWER, SONY HAS JUST DISCOVER GOLD!!!!!👍

  23. john k says:

    When I saw Karl Urban in Priest I said he would make a great Roland

  24. I always saw Jensen Ackles as Roland.

  25. Darlene Vande Voort says:

    Wish I could get just one book by Stephen King for my daughter whjo has every book in hard cover that e wrote she would be sohappy if I could get her one

  26. Rogue428 says:

    Timothy Olyphant will be available as soon as he gets out of Harlan (dead or alive). Just sayin’.

  27. Bryce G. says:


  28. Helios says:

    Clicked here through a Scott Eastwood article…he might be great for Roland. About the right age for a 5+ year filming schedule, and he’s already got his dad’s crow,s feet.
    Michael Fassbender could fill those boots quite nicely.

  29. Norma says:

    I always saw Josh Holloway as Roland.

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