The Dark Tower May Finally Have Its Gunslinger

Luther Idris Elba
courtesy BBCAmerica

A successful book series written by one of the biggest authors of our time. Seemingly tailor-made for a global film franchise, it’s confounding how Stephen King‘s The Dark Tower series has been stuck in production hell for so long. Ron Howard was attached to the project forever. He even once mapped out a multi-installment story arc that would have crossed over between the big screen and television. For years rumors have circulated about stars who might be interested in playing the lead, a gunslinger by the name of Roland Deschain. Russell Crowe and Javier Bardem are just two of the stars who have circled the role in the past.

According to Deadline, the search may finally be over. Idris Elba is in the final stage of negotiations to play Deschain in a multi-film deal. Speculation has run rampant over the past few years as to when and where Elba would land a film franchise he could lead. He has a supporting role in the Marvel universe (Heimdall from Asgard) but has yet to land that signature role. Writers, fans, and bloggers had created a grassroots swelling of support to make him the next James Bond. While that effort led to some controversy when various players associated with Bond weighed in, Elba’s potential to lead a successful franchise has never waned.

The Dark Tower series crosses multiple genres including science fiction, westerns, horror, and fantasy. King’s series has sold more than 30 million copies in 40 countries. Erik van Rheenen has a nice piece that highlights some of the most interesting facts about the series. Even behind the success of the books, King’s name is enough to drive box office attention and the franchise has tremendous potential.

Matthew McConaughey is supposedly in talks to play the main villain, the Man in Black. He and Elba would likely make quite a screen duo if both deals are finalized. Earlier this summer, it was announced that Nikolaj Arcel (A Royal Affair) would direct the film. After being kicked around between several studios over the years, Sony now owns the project and is managing the current progress.



Jeffrey Bricker is a freelance writer from the USA. His first cinema experience was watching "Raiders of the Lost Ark" which remains he favorite film of all time. He is an admitted cinephile who makes no apologies for his addiction. And for those still wondering, yes the token kept spinning and Cobb was stuck in his dream forever.