After having been seemingly lost in Hollywood development hell, the first (of eight) books in Stephen King‘s Dark Tower series is officially moving forward. Idris Elba (Beasts of No Nation) and Matthew McConnaughey (Interstellar) have been confirmed to star in leading roles. The film has director Nikolaj Arcel (A Royal Affair) attached after having both J.J. Abrams (Star Trek) and Ron Howard (who is still producing) previously on-board the project.
The first book, released in 1982, titled The Dark Tower: The Gunslinger, is the beginning of an expansive Western fantasy story, which seems perfect for a film adaptation. Also, since this is only the first book, it’s very possible that Sony is hoping that this could turn into a franchise, but that’s not yet confirmed. Having Elba and McConnaughey starring increases the possibility that the series might turn into something big.
Stephen King did the honor himself of releasing the casting news through his personal Twitter page:
— Stephen King (@StephenKing) March 1, 2016
Lately, both Elba and McConnaughey have been in a bit of sweet-spot, having multiple successful films released over the past few years, and The Dark Tower shouldn’t be any different. However, it is quite lucky that this adaptation is actually moving forward. King recently spoke to Entertainment Weekly about his past trepidations about the project and what these new developments could mean for the series:
The thing is, it’s been a looong trip from the books to the film. When you think about it, I started these stories as a senior in college, sitting in a little shitty cabin beside the river in Maine, and finally this thing is actually in pre-production now. I’m delighted, and I’m a little bit surprised.
The film is set for release on January 13, 2017, so it shouldn’t be too long before it begins production, and fans are able to rest easy once again.