Author Stephen King is making a big cinematic comeback in 2017. A new adaptation of his 1986 horror-classic It is opening in theaters this September, and is expected to be a two-part installation with the second film following soon after. Before It hits theaters, however, another Stephen King adaptation will see a nationwide release in the form of The Dark Tower. Based on the final novel in his eight-part series, The Dark Tower, the film follows a man named Roland Deschain, the Last Gunslinger, who faces off with the Man in Black, Walter O’Dim, in an effort to stop him from destroying the Dark Tower, a mystical building that serves as the center of all universes. In writing the series, King drew inspiration from several sources, including the Arthurian Legend, J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Lord of the Rings, and the American West.
The Dark Tower series takes place in Mid-World (a reference to Tolkien’s Middle Earth), a feudal society that very much resembles the American West. Once comprised of an advanced society, Mid-World is now void of technological advancement. Magic was also once very common in Mid-World, but now only exists in the form of rare relics and artifacts. Throughout its history, and owing to the mysticism of its nature, Mid-World has seen entire cities simply vanish without explanation, and whole nations torn apart by war. The main character, Deschain, who is based on Clint Eastwood’s character in The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly, is the last of an order of knights who now wanders the desolate landscape, searching for a means to save the world as it falls apart all around him.
Idris Elba (American Gangster, Beasts of No Nation) and Matthew McConaughey (Interstellar, Dallas Buyers Club) star as Deschain/The Gunslinger and the Man in Black respectively, who face off in a battle of good and evil with the fate of the world hanging in the balance. The film adaptation follows a young New Yorker named Lucas, who enters Mid-World and encounters Deschain who, reluctant at first, embarks on a quest to help Lucas takedown the Man in Black before both worlds are consumed by darkness. The Dark Tower will be writer/director Nikolaj Arcel’s first directorial big screen feature since 2012’s Royal Affair. Nicholas Hamilton, Katheryn Winnick, Abbey Lee, Jackie Earl Haley, and Dennis Haysbert also star in the film. More details will be forthcoming, but personally I’m hoping to see some excellent cinematography set against an epic Tolkien-worthy adventure. Fingers crossed!