The Dark Tower TV series would have cast Stephen King

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Amazon has decided not to press on with a new Dark Tower adaptation…

2017 saw some breakthrough movie adaptations of Stephen King works like Gerald’s Game and IT, but one notable disappointment was The Dark Tower movie. The film, starring Matthew McConaughey and Idris Elba, was a critical and commercial failure over that summer. So much so, that it eventually threw plans for a linked TV show into jeopardy.

Amazon said that a Dark Tower television series was still an active project back in February of 2018, and that it was on a slate of shows that the company was developing at the time, which included the new Lord Of The Rings TV series, but Deadline confirmed this past January that plans for a Dark Tower TV project had been abruptly cancelled at the streaming studio, saying “Amazon executives felt like the pilot was not on the level of other large-scope elevated genre series the streamer has in production/pre-production like Wheel Of Time and The Lord Of the Rings.”

The defunct series’ showrunner, Glen Mazzara, has recently been chatting about the plans he had for The Dark Tower, including casting author King himself, or someone to play him.

“If Stephen was up for it we would’ve done it, or I would’ve cast someone to play Stephen King,” he told The Kingscast. “But if Stephen King’s gonna be a character in the books, I felt like I had to be a character in the show.”

Chatting to Vulture in 2017, King revealed that the show would have distanced itself from the 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.”

In terms of the film itself, whilst King had praise for screenwriter Akiva Goldsman, the author admitted that “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 behaviour in a fairly graphic way.”