”As part of the effort, Amazon made a mega deal for a Lord Of the Rings TV series and is developing a slew of high-profile titles, including The Dark Tower, Wheel of Time, Ringworld, Lazarus and Snow Crash.”
Since that initial article there hasn’t been any follow up articles that didn’t use that brief mention as the source, nor has there been any official confirmation from Amazon or anyone related to the shows….until now!
Tal Yguado, Head of Genre at Amazon tweeted this yesterday:
Glen Mazzara is the Showrunner for the Dark Tower show.
Tal Yguado is Head of Event Series at Amazon, She was tasked with the development and production of big scope, big event genre series — hourlong science fiction, action, fantasy and horror series.
The above retweet by Sharon Tal Yguado has since been deleted from her account, but @clubstephenking on twitter have posted this:
“Amazon contacted us to tell us that the project is well under development, but has not yet received the green light.“
Buried in an unrelated story over on Deadline was the news that Amazon is apparently the home for the small screen version of “The Dark Tower.”
“As part of the effort, Amazon made a mega deal for a Lord Of the Rings TV series and is developing a slew of high-profile titles, including The Dark Tower, Wheel of Time, Ringworld, Lazarus and Snow Crash”.
We don’t have any other firm details at this time, but last we heard, Glen Mazzara (formerly of AMC’s “The Walking Dead”) was to be the series’ showrunner.
A TV show based upon The Dark Tower book series is still in the works and looks all set to begin filming across the pond this summer. Producers Ron Howard, Brian Grazer, and Akiva Goldsman spent a decade trying to adapt Stephen King’s meta-fantasy The Dark Tower to both the big and small screen. The ambitious plan was for a TV series and group of films to tell the combined story of Roland Deschain and attempt to imitate the multi-faceted series of novels. With last summer’s The Dark Tower movie, the first part of that dream was realized—but to less than stellar results.
Despite the failure of The Dark Tower in cinemas, the TV series seems to still be moving forward. The Dark Tower series has a showrunner and is likely in the process of casting now. And unlike the film, which took liberties with the source material, The Dark Tower TV show will be faithful to the books.
Omega Underground is reporting that The Dark Tower TV show will begin production this summer in both the UK and Ireland. Like Game of Thrones, it’s likely the show will utilize some of the unique landscapes in the area to bring the world of King’s books to life. By doing so, it can create a more alien world without crossing over to ours like the movie.
Whereas The Dark Tower film tried to condense a lot of plot into one film, the TV show is said to be based upon Wizard & Glass, the fourth book in the series. The novel took a step back from the main narrative and showed Roland as a young warrior in a small town dealing with a specific plot. The more streamlined approach—and full immersion in the fantasy world—could be just right for a TV show. From there, the series could then expand upon the world.
Stephen King says The Dark Tower TV show will be a reboot of sorts, meaning the series will be distancing itself from the movie. But by faithfully adapting the books—and focusing on a prequel-type story—the show should be able to avoid associations with the film.
Stephen King has spoken out on why he thinks The Dark Tower failed. The prolific author’s work has always been ripe for adaptation (See: Carrie, The Shining, Children of the Corn, and a trove of other classics), but this year has been particularly fruitful. In the last few months alone, two of his well-known works have been translated to screen: IT, his famed clown-centric thriller, and The Dark Tower, his sprawling, eight-book fantasy epic.
But while IT was a runaway blockbuster, The Dark Tower fell woefully short. The film took in only $110 million worldwide against a $60 million budget, and its reviews were largely scathing. A tie-in TV series, based on the fourth book, a prequel, is still charging ahead, but even the movie’s star, Idris Elba, isn’t certain about the franchise’s future. So where did it go wrong?
According to King, it came down to two things: Trying to fit such a large scale project into a suitable runtime and having to water down the book’s original tone. As he told Vulture in a recent interview:
“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 behavior in a fairly graphic way. That was something that had to be overcome, although I’ve gotta say, I thought [screenwriter] Akiva Goldsman did a terrific job in taking a central part of the book and turning it into what I thought was a pretty good 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.”
Glen Mazzara (The Walking Dead) has been tapped to serve as showrunner on the TV adaptation of the ambitious Stephen King series. The TV take, envisioned as a straight-to-series project, is in its early stages, and tapping a showrunner is the key first step. A network is not yet attached. Sources tell The Hollywood Reporter that it is being eyed for a short-order (between 10 and 13 episodes) and a home on cable or streaming outlets by producers Media Rights Capital and Sony Pictures Television. Production is eyed to begin in 2018, though nothing is locked in given all the variables.
“I’ve been a Stephen King fan for decades, and the opportunity to adapt The Dark Tower as a TV series is a great honor,” Mazzara tells THR. “The events of The Gunslinger, Wizard and Glass, The Wind Through the Keyhole and other tales need a long format to capture the complexity of Roland’s coming of age — how he became the Gunslinger, how Walter became the Man in Black, and how their rivalry cost Roland everything and everyone he ever loved. I could not be more excited to tell this story. It feels like being given the key to a treasure chest. And oh yeah, we’ll have billy-bumblers!”