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:
An exclusive interview with actress, model, and Raymond Weil brand ambassador Katheryn Winnick, star of the hit TV series ‘Vikings.’
INC – Sure, Katheryn Winnick’s IMDb page lists over 60 credits. Sure, she’s appeared on a number of magazine covers, not to mention scores of feature stories and interviews.
And sure, on the hit TV series Vikings (just renewed for a fifth season) she plays one of the most multi-layered characters on television.
Talented actress? Absolutely — but inside Katheryn Winnick also beats the heart of an entrepreneur.
This is another in my series of interviews with people you might not think are entrepreneurs — but they absolutely are. After all, actresses and actors are in business — the business of themselves. And while you might think you have nothing in common, you’re wrong.
When you were sixteen years old you opened a martial arts school. A few years later you had three. How did you pull that off?
I got my first black belt when I was thirteen, and then I started teaching martial arts at after school programs and over time more and more people asked me to teach them. So I started a school in Toronto and it expanded through word of mouth and just took off.
My dad was an entrepreneur so I had a great role model. He showed me that if you want to do something great the best way is to do it yourself. Watching him made me realize that anything is possible if you put your mind to it. He made things happen for himself and seeing that was so inspiring and gave me a lot of confidence… so the thought of starting a business of my own was really exciting.
I knew I wanted to work, I knew I wanted to help people, and starting my own business was the best way to accomplish both.
So how did you go from teaching martial arts to acting?
DESIGN & TREND – Katheryn Winnick’s Lagertha won’t be going to Valhalla anytime soon.
Before the surprising time jump towards the end of the season 5 finale of “Vikings,” Lagertha was brutally stabbed in the chest during the siege on Paris. The shieldmaiden wasn’t seen nor was she mentioned in the flash-forward, but series creator Michael Hirst confirmed in a couple of interviews following the airing of the midseason finale that Lagertha is alive.
“There’s a feminist collective in New York who wrote to me a couple years ago and they said, ‘We don’t’ care how many of the male characters you kill off, but if you do anything to Lagertha, you’re in trouble.’ So I’m very careful about that warning,” Hirst told TV Guide.
On a more serious note, Hirst said that Lagertha is far too important of a character for him to kill off just yet.
CHRISTIAN TODAY – The first half of “Vikings” season 4 came to bloody close, and fans can’t wait when the latter half of the season arrives. Unfortunately, History Channel hasn’t announced the return date of the series.
Rumors, however, indicate that “Vikings” season 4 will premiere this July. By then it will have been around three months since the midseason finale aired. Den of Geek believes that the show will return as HBO’s “Game of Thrones” wraps up.
For fans of Katheryn Winnick’s Lagertha, it is important for them to known when “Vikings” season 4 will return, because it will mean they will finally see what is in store for the shieldmaiden, who was in an alarming situation when the credits rolled.
She was as good as dead in the midseason finale after Aslaug attempted to eliminate her to have the crown to herself. (this is part of the original article but its not a true statement – Lagertha was stabbed by the Franks during the second invasion of Paris ~ Alikat) But according to executive producer Michael Hirst, Lagertha will live to see another day.
In fact, “Vikings” season 4 promises an epic comeback for her. “She’s a huge part of the story going forward,” Hirst told Entertainment Weekly.
IMDb: What does it mean to you to have such a massive viewership and fan base?
Katheryn Winnick: It’s amazing just to see how many people relate to the show and how people from different backgrounds, cultures, and countries all identify with these characters and are fascinated with the Viking world. It’s now going into Season 4 and having now double the episodes. And the fact that History Channel ordered twice the number is such a proud moment — that all our hard work from Season 1 is now coming to fruition. It’s amazing to have the fans and the critics all by our sides. Our biggest complaint was people wanted more episodes!
Lagertha has consistently been a fiercely strong, independent woman and leader. How has she changed in Season 4?
You will see her making decisions totally based on herself and trusting herself, especially in the midseason finale and the one coming after. She’s been burned before and betrayed before from everyone from Season 1, from Ragnar (Travis Fimmel) to her second husband, who physically abused her and Kalf (Ben Robson), who betrayed her by taking over Hedeby.
I think that she’s definitely now trusting her own intuition, and she probably will never put herself in a situation where she’s depending on other people as much. I would even say that she comes into her own even more so in Season 4. You’ll definitely see a big change with Lagertha. There will be a change not just physically but also in who she is as a person, and she gets a new tattoo and more responsibilities. There are definitely some fun changes.