'The Dark Tower' TV Series Casts Its Roland Deschain

Author Stephen King might mostly be known for his tales of terror, but another one of his most well-known works is the fantasy epic series The Dark Tower. A film was released in 2017 that attempted to adapt the complex narrative, which didn't entirely connect with audiences in ways the studio had hoped. A new TV series is on the way from Amazon Studios, which will use a long-form storytelling strategy to do justice to the original expansive mythology. Deadline reports that Mindhunter star Sam Strike has been cast as main character Roland Deschain and that Vikings star Jasper Pääkkönen will also appear in the series.

The site also noted that the upcoming series would likely take place before the events of the original novels and feature film. Deadline details, "The Dark Tower TV series is independent from the film and is meant to be a more faithful retelling of the book than the movie was. I hear it will take place many years before the events depicted in the feature and will focus on Roland Deschain’s (Strike) origin story – how he first became a gunslinger and got his guns, his first conflict with the man in black, his first love, and his first mission as a gunslinger."

Pääkkönen will reportedly be playing a character named Marten, the first target Deschain sets out to kill.

King's eight-book series featured elements of horror, science fiction, fantasy, and traditional Western tropes, creating a narrative that appealed to a massive audience and built a passionate following. Despite the 2017 film being highly anticipated, the finished product didn't entirely connect with any audiences, as review aggregator site Rotten Tomatoes calculated 16 percent positive reviews for the film while its worldwide box office sits at $112 million.

King himself may have supported the film leading into its release, but ultimately opened up about why he thinks the adaptation fell flat.

"The real problem, as far as I’m concerned is, they went in to this movie, and I think this was a studio edict pretty much: this is going to be a PG-13 movie. It’s going to be a tentpole movie," King shared with Entertainment Weekly previously. "We want to make sure that we get people in there from the ages of, let’s say, 12 right on up to whatever the target age is. Let’s say 12 to 35. That’s what we want."

"So it has to be PG-13, and when they did that I think that they lost a lot of the toughness of it and it became something where people went to it and said, 'Well yeah, but it’s really not anything that we haven’t seen before,'" he added.

Stay tuned for details on The Dark Tower.

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