DEADLINE – There are other worlds than these, but in this one, the first official international trailer for Sony/MRC’s The Dark Tower is upon us. The latest Stephen King feature adaptation stars Matthew McConaughey and Idris Elba who teased the highly-anticipated movie in a Twitter exchange yesterday. Check out the full trailer above.
A Royal Affair‘s Nikolaj Arcel directs the post-apocalyptic story of Roland Deschain aka The Gunslinger (Elba) who is seeking a Dark Tower, the nexus of all universes, which would preserve his dying world. Along the way, he faces off with Walter O’Dim aka The Man in Black (McConaughey) who is determined to prevent him from toppling the Tower. Caught in the battle of good-vs-evil is young Jake Chambers (Tom Taylor) whose earthly visions of the Gunslinger turn out not to be the stuff of dreams.
SHOWBIZ JUNKIES – History’s critically acclaimed Vikings will return for the second half of season four on November 30, 2016, and in support of the upcoming premiere Katheryn Winnick participated in a conference call to discuss what’s in store for her character, Lagertha. 99% of the conference call focused on Vikings, however Winnick was also asked a question about a project she managed to star in during her limited downtime from Vikings. Winnick has the much-anticipated The Dark Tower heading to theaters in 2017, and Sony just confirmed it’s now moved off of a February release date to July 28, 2017.
The cast is led by Idris Elba as Roland Deschain and includes Matthew McConaughey as Randall Flagg (aka The Man in Black), Tom Taylor as Jake Chambers, Abbey Lee as Tirana, and Fran Kranz as Pimli. Winnick’s character hasn’t been revealed, however during the conference call she came close to accidentally letting it slip.
“I play a character that’s in the novels as well,” offered Winnick. “I assume I’m not allowed to talk about who I play. (Laughing) I was this/close about giving it away! That was almost a massive slip-up. But I will say this, I have some great scenes with Matthew McConaughey who I love working with. I worked with him years and years ago on Failure to Launch – one of my very first movies. So, it was nice to reunite with him. He plays a very interesting character.”
There was just barely time to fit in the role after Vikings wrapped up, but Winnick managed to pull it off. The film was shot in Cape Town during her hiatus. “It was an amazing experience,” said Winnick. “I only had less than two months of a break in between so it just luckily worked out, in terms of scheduling. I went straight from the end of season four straight to Toronto to visit my family and two days later I was on a plane to Cape Town. So, it was really quick. I know that they’ve been trying to get this movie made for over eight years. Ron Howard’s producing it. Idris Elba is starring in it, and Matthew McConaughey also. We’ve got an incredible young cast as well.”
Winnick added, “We’ve got an incredible director (Nikolaj Arcel) who’s really hands on with the actors and really has his own vision, his voice behind the camera and how he wants the film to be really authentic and real even though it has more mystical elements. But I think fans are going to absolutely love it.”
Winnick is aware of discussions taking place about the future of The Dark Tower franchise, but she hasn’t heard anything definite. “I know that there are talks of doing a TV show now and possibly more movies. I know that I had an incredible experience working on it, and it’s just going to be amazing when it comes out. I believe the date now is in July. I’m excited to see it in theaters and I’m sure you guys will too.”
Before returning to all things Vikings, Winnick added one final The Dark Tower statement: “I play a character that’s extremely different than Lagertha – I will say that!”
EW – The bricks of The Dark Tower are being rearranged.
Next February’s big-screen adaptation of Stephen King’s epic fantasy saga will retell the story of Roland the Gunslinger and his pursuit of The Man in Black by drawing together elements from all eight of the author’s novels.
It’s a unique approach, similar to the way superhero movies craft a new origin story based on decades of comic book mythology. But King fans are naturally wondering: What parts of this series will they actually see on screen?
Without spoiling plot twists from any of the stories, here are some of the elements and themes that find their way from page to screen.
BOOK I: The Gunslinger – (1982)
This book sets up Roland’s quest for vengeance against the Man in Black and establishes his bond with a mysterious boy, known as Jake. The basic structure of the story serves as the backbone for the new film.
BOOK II: The Drawing of the Three (1987)
Notions of parallel realities stacked atop one another and “ka-tet” (a family found through destiny) originated here. Most of the other key elements of this book will probably be saved for another film, since the characters Eddie and Susannah, who are drawn from our world into Roland’s apocalyptic Mid-World, are being saved for a future movie.
BOOK III: The Waste Lands (1991)
The movie features one of this book’s most memorable set-pieces – Dutch Hill, a decrepit Brooklyn mansion that literally comes alive to protect a portal to Mid-World. Both film and novel also include a lot of Jake’s life in New York, with Vikings actress Katheryn Winnick playing the boy’s mother, who fears the visions her son is having about a gunslinger, a Man in Black, and an ethereal Tower are signs of a psychological breakdown.The bricks of The Dark Tower are being rearranged.
NERDBASTARDS – Childe Roland to the Dark Tower came and apparently brought a viking with him. Written over the course of thirty years and tying into nearly every other one of his novels, The Dark Tower by Stephen King has been fueling the imaginations of fans for decades, inspiring a faithful following of people embracing the unique language, history, and old west/medieval culture of Mid-World. Described as King’s magnum opus, The Dark Tower has appropriately had a long and weary road to the big screen. Now, information is coming quickly as filming finally began earlier this month. The latest news comes in the form of another casting announcement as Vikings‘ Katheryn Winnick has been added to the film.
Originally, the rights to the movie were purchased from King for nineteen dollars, nineteen being a number of great significance in the series. The recipient of the rights was, of course, J.J. Abrams, as it is now Hollywood law that Abrams gets first crack at any big screen reboot or adaptation of a beloved nerd franchise. When that fell through, Ron Howard and Akiva Goldsman stepped in, proposing the project as a trilogy of films with television series placed in between to properly adapt the sprawling epic. At different points, Javier Bardem and Viggo Mortensen were rumored to be up for the main role of Roland, the gunslinger, which would have been awesome; at another point, Russell Crowe was in talks, which would have been less awesome.
Now the film is in production with the incredible Idris Elba in the lead and Matthew McConaughey cast as the villainous Man in Black, which is especially exciting after seeing the impressive scope of McConaughey’s talent in recent projects like HBO’s True Detective. The film also stars Jackie Earle Hayley (Watchmen), Abbey Lee (Mad Max: Fury Road), and Fran Kranz (The Cabin in the Woods, Dollhouse) and will be directed by Nikolaj Arcel (A Royal Affair). Joining the cast in an unspecified role is Katheryn Winnick, who seems to be on the rise right now, having been cast in a lead role in Dean Devlin‘s forthcoming Geostorm, as well.
/FILM – That headline may be a bit of a deep cut for the uninitiated, but you hopefully got the gist of it: Katheryn Winnick, who is best known for playing Lagertha on the History Channel’s Vikings series, has joined the rapidly expanding cast of the upcoming film adaptation of Stephen King’s The Dark Tower. Whom she’ll play in Nikolaj Arcel‘s film remains unknown, but one report suggests that fans of the book series should stop scouring the text to find a connection – it looks like she could be playing a newly invented character.
The initial news of Winnick’s casting was revealed over at Variety and their story contains the usual elements you expect to see in a story like this: the studio declining to comment, the specifics of the role remaining unknown, and so on and so forth. In fact, The Dark Tower has been a fairly secretive production so far, steadily adding new cast members to ensemble without much information about their role in the film. Heck, cameras have been rolling for a few weeks now and no one has managed to snag a photograph of Idris Elba as Roland the Gunslinger or Matthew McConaughey as the Man in Black.
However, Dark Tower super-fan and AICN writer Eric Vespe thinks he knows who Winnick is playing. Since many of the series’ more iconic characters (like Eddie and Susannah) are being saved for a potential sequel, the first film is creating a whole bunch of new characters and Winnick is one of them: