The Dark Tower series of novels have served as a sort of centerpiece for Stephen King’s loosely-connected shared multiverse, and while there are a few blink-and-you’ll-miss-them Easter Eggs in the trailer, the connection hasn’t really been established. However, Sony’s latest bit of marketing for the film ties these various works together in order to contextualize how the Dark Tower itself connects all of these worlds together.
The advertisement, shown below, features a voice-over from Idris Elba’s Roland Deschain as he alludes to the various worlds connected by the Dark Tower.
King’s faithful should easily be able to recognize the references to his other works, including The Shining, IT, Carrie, The Shawshank Redemption, Christine, The Stand, and possibly a few others for those who look closely enough. In any case, this is a smart way of making these sorts of connections, as it’s likely that making a Stephen King Cinematic Universe is next to impossible with his film rights being spread between so many film and television studios.
The Dark Tower will loom over theaters on August 4, 2017. Its cast includes Idris Elba as Roland “The Gunslinger” Deschain, Matthew McConaughey as Walter “The Man In Black” Padick, Tom Taylor as Jake Chambers, Katheryn Winnick as Laurie Chambers, Jackie Earle Haley as Sayre, Fran Kranz as Pimli, Abbey Lee Kershaw as Tirana, Michael Barbieri as Timmy, Claudia Kim as Arra Champignon, José Zúñiga as Dr. Hotchkiss, Alex McGregor as Susan Delgado, Nicholas Hamilton as Lucas Hanson, and De-Wet Nagel as Taheen Tech.
Stephen King Adaptations Hollywood Needs To Get Right
With The Dark Tower and It, two of King’s most famous and beloved works, reaching the big screen, it feels like the gates are opening on a new age of Stephen King adaptations
Already we’ve seen 1) a new Carrie movie, 2) Under the Dome and 11/22/63 get TV adaptations 3) Netflix’s upcoming Gerald’s Game, 4) a TV series based on the Mr. Mercedes trilogy, 5) Josh Boone looks to make Revival his follow-up to X-Men: The New Mutants, 5) a new version of Hearts in Atlantis is in the works (just called Hearts) and 6) a Cujo remake, with the amazing title of C.U.J.O. Even Cell got made, plus a personal favorite of mine The Mist is back in the form of a new Syfy series airing later this year (based on both the original novella and Frank Darabont’s superb 2007 film).
Our age of cinematic universes feels tailor-made for the world-renowned author. King is known not only for his productivity but for how his stories interlock together in the same universe (multiverse, if you want to get specific). His entire oeuvre is connected by characters, locations, and events, all centered around the literal and figurative Dark Tower, the structure and book series sit at the center of King’s worlds. Of course, no one entity owns the rights to all of King’s works, so we won’t be seeing, say, Pennywise the Dancing Clown say hi to Idris Elba’s gunslinger in a movie anytime soon, but it speaks to King’s continued relevance.
There are, of course, the adaptations that are sacrosanct and need to no update, plus others where we are simply waiting to see if they happen. Speaking of Darabont, he delivered a trilogy of amazing King adaptations in my opinion between The Shawshank Redemption, The Green Mile, and The Mist. Rob Reiner also mastered the artform, giving us Stand by Me and Misery. There’s already a perfectly-good The Dead Zone movie and TV show. The Tommyknockers and Desperation got the miniseries treatment in 1991 and 2006, respectively. The latter came with a teleplay by King himself, while the former was announced for a new miniseries back in 2013 along with Rosemary’s Baby, the failure of which may have something to do with the radio silence since the announcement. The Shining is actually not one, with King famously disliking the Stanley Kubrick film enough to make a miniseries of his own to “correct” the record (and a Shining prequel is first on our list).
While some works defy or seek re-adaptation, the breadth of the man’s work means there’s plenty of new stuff to mine in the coming years as well. Click Next to learn which to watch out for!
Honorable mentions: The Dark Half, Dolores Claiborne, Apt Pupil, Dreamcatcher