With all the Comic-Con news filling up our home page, you’d think there’s nothing else going on in the world of genre filmmaking, but of course there is, and we’re doing our best to bring you all the news that’s out there — even if it’s as depressing as this latest story.
Yes, Roland Deschain fans, you read the headline correctly: Universal Pictures has passed on going forward with The Dark Tower.
Deadline has all the ins and outs, but here’s the short version: Universal brass loved the filmmakers and the project but couldn’t make it work with the current budget in its business model.
So that means the filmmakers will have to find a new backer of what might well be the most ambitious movie project since Bob Shaye allowed Peter Jackson to shoot three installments of The Lord of the Rings back to back. As you’ll no doubt recall, Ron Howard was hoping to adapt The Dark Tower as three films, the first of which he planned to direct, bridged by a pair of TV series. Comic book and “Heroes” and “Battlestar Galactica” writer/producer Mark Verheiden was hired to co-write the TV component with Akiva Goldsman, who was writing the films’ scripts. Brian Grazer, Goldsman and Howard were set to produce with Javier Bardem starring as gunslinger Deschain.
Now it’s back to square one although there are rumblings that Warner Bros.–where Goldsman’s Weed Road is based and which is fully financing two installments of Peter Jackson’s The Hobbit–is a possible landing place.
Keep it here for more developments at they come!
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