Will The Dark Tower 2 movie release date ever happen? It’s a real question since even fans of Stephen King’s books may not turn out for The Dark Tower sequel considering the current box-office failure. But director Nikolaj Arcel seems to be trucking forward since he’s been discussing ideas for The Dark Tower 2 based on The Drawing of the Three. In addition, Sony is gauging interest in a Dark Tower TV series.
The biggest issue is money since the Dark Tower movie’s box-office numbers are sitting at $33 million as of this article’s publishing. However, the production cost was only $60 million, so it’s possible The Dark Tower 2 could grace theaters. But where would Idris Elba and Tom Taylor be going next?
The synopsis of the story is that gunslinger Roland Deschain is on a quest to find the Dark Tower, a structure that links all the worlds in the multiverse together. Roland is the last living member of an order of knights known as the gunslingers. He lives in an alternate world called Mid-World, which is a combination of the American wild west and a magical, post-apocalyptic fantasy world. Roland is on a quest to save the Tower from the darkness.
The first movie ended with Roland and young Jake Chambers setting out on a new adventure after defeating Matthew McConaughey’s Man in Black. Ending the film with that particular character’s death was quite the surprise since he’s the main villain for the whole book series, in addition to the Crimson King. But according to an interview with Coming Soon, Arcel says that the “Man in Black will return.”
“He’s the main, he’s THE villain. If we had really wanted to kill him off for good, it would’ve been a bigger moment, and I think it was almost like, ‘Did he die? Did he not?’ I don’t know,” Arcel said. “For me, he certainly didn’t. He is in the later installments of the novels, so yeah.”
Arcel also hinted that Jackie Earle Haley could return as Sayre the vampire.
“I think there is a possible future for him. We don’t see him actually die, right? But I think he’s definitely one of those characters that I felt wasn’t a big character in the script, but Jackie, I’ve always loved his work. I just told him, ‘Listen, it’s not a huge part, but it’s important, you know, a seriously important character.’ And he was so game. He was cool. He was just like, ‘Yeah, I love the character, so let me do it.’ But you never know what can happen.”
Arcel says that if The Dark Tower 2 movie is green lit, then he plans to draw inspiration from the second book, The Drawing of the Three. Considering how different the first movie was from the books, this answer may not please Stephen King’s army of fans, but he says “that’s the best I can do.”
The Dark Tower 2: The Drawing of the Three would presumably include characters like Odetta Holmes/Detta Walker and Eddie Dean (Breaking Bad star Aaron Paul really wants to play Eddie). However, Jake’s role in the story may end up changing dramatically. The second book also has interesting monsters like the Lobstrosity, which, as it sounds, is a giant lobster that lumbers through the wastelands.
How The Dark Tower Books Compare To The Movie
Did anyone really expect the director to take the 224 pages of The Dark Tower: The Gunslinger and turn it into a 95-minute movie without making some major changes? The director probably realized what an impossible task that’d be and decided to go a different direction.
“It is, in fact, a continuation,” director Nik Arcel told IGN. “It is a canon continuation. That’s exactly what we intended and what Stephen King has signed off on.”
Technically, the movie is a sequel of the book series, so there is a very good reason the movie made so many changes. Without ruining the entire book ending with too many details, Roland makes it to the top of the Dark Tower, only to realize someone has him trapped in a time loop where he’s destined to undertake the journey over and over. The seventh book, also called The Dark Tower, ends where The Gunslinger book begins, except that Roland now has the Horn of Eld.
The Dark Tower is close, now. The Crimson King awaits. Soon Roland will raise the Horn of Eld. And blow. pic.twitter.com/rqGSKM3dWL
— Stephen King (@StephenKing) May 19, 2016
Some fans have interpreted King’s tweet to mean that movie series will culminate in Roland’s final trip to the top of the Dark Tower. So, while Roland will inevitably relive some parts of his previous journeys, it makes sense that certain plot points should change in order for the endless cycle to be broken.
The elephant in the room is the fate of Jake Chambers. The boy came from a world like Earth, and the character is essentially Roland’s adopted son. In The Gunslinger, Roland originally lets Jake die in order to reach the Man in Black, but in the movie, the character lives and plays an active role. In the books, Jake did come back later, but it was a version created from a time paradox. That version of Jake obviously had issues with what had taken place, whereas the movie version of Jake will not risk insanity. Fans of the books may object that Roland did not sacrifice Jake in the first movie, but perhaps this is just a sign that Roland is closer to redemption.
The one major story change that is difficult to redeem is the destruction of Devar-Toi in the movie. That event originally took place in the middle of the seventh book and is part of the overall climax to the entire series. The fifth book, Wolves of the Calla, was when the heroes learned of the existence of Devar-Toi.
Introducing Devar-Toi at the beginning takes away the mystery but also reduces the tension and hardship of the struggle. The books cover years of the heroes traveling just to reach Devar-Toi, which is relatively physically close to the Tower. Now, an epic journey is reduced to a month-long excursion.
The destruction of Devar-Toi also means that The Dark Tower 2 movie can borrow elements of The Drawing of the Three, but the film and movie can’t have the same meaning. Devar-Toi is the place where the Crimson King houses the psychically gifted people necessary to break the beams of light that connect to the Dark Tower. If the beams are broken, the Tower falls and darkness wins, so Roland originally needed help to save the Tower from Devar-Toi.
This is where the necessity for Roland’s ka-tet becomes an issue. The Drawing of the Three introduced Eddie Dean, Odetta Holmes (who becomes Susannah Dean), and the sadistic Jack Mort from the different time periods of New York City. If Roland is healthy and Jake is becoming a new gunslinger, then why risk seeking out and bringing the other characters to Mid-World? With both Devar-Toi and the Man in Black destroyed in the first movie, the danger is gone, and there’s no real reason for Roland to recruit anyone else to save the Dark Tower.
Thus, the real problem that director Arcel faces with creating The Dark Tower 2 is creating a good motive for the journey to continue. There needs to be an epic incentive. And, no, it doesn’t seem likely that having the Lobstrosity take a few fingers and toes will cut it, both literally and figuratively.
The Dark Tower TV Series Is A Prequel
For years, the plan was to make both a movie and a The Dark Tower TV show that was based on Wizard and Glass, the fourth novel in the series. Media Rights Capital (MRC) and Sony Pictures Television have hired The Walking Dead’s Glen Mazzara as the showrunner, and he says the TV show will act as a prequel.
“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 said, according to the Hollywood Reporter. “The events of The Gunslinger, Wizard & 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!”
Unless the movie’s lack of success killed the plans, the Dark Tower TV series is expected to enter production fairly soon, with a 10- to 13-episode season slated to hit in 2018. An exit survey for the movie indicates that people are interested in a TV show regardless of the movie.
“People who have seen the movie are interested in a TV series whether or not they liked the movie; even if they didn’t like the movie, they were not turned off by that,” said MRC co-CEO Modi Wiczyk, according to Deadline.
Even if The Dark Tower 2 release date never happens, it seems like the gunslinger will continue his quest on a smaller scale.
[Featured Image by Columbia Pictures]