The long-awaited adaptation of the Steven King series The Dark Tower bombed at the box office. It was a sad day for fans of the book series looking for a possible sequel that could save the film series. There were reports of numerous missed-steps in the production that caused this eventuality. It is truly a sad day. The Dark Tower is on most people’s “worst films of 2017” lists, but it didn’t have to be this way. The master, Steven King himself, has a few ideas about how it came about.
In a recent interview with Entertainment Weekly,King doesn’t take the opportunity to put the film down for its shortcomings, rather he analyzes why he thinks it fell short of expectations. Approach is a big reason King attributes to the film’s failure, but it is so much more than just that:
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. 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.
King feels that the film lacked the grit and originality of the novels, but it fell long before the film edit of the film was cut:
There was a decision made, too, to start it pretty much in the middle, and when they actually made the movie I had doubts about it from the beginning, and expressed them, and didn’t really get too far. Sometimes when people have made up their mind, the creative team that’s actually going to go and shoot the movie, it’s a little bit like hitting your fist against hard rubber, you know. There’s a kind of it doesn’t really hurt, but you don’t get anywhere. It just sort of bounces back and I thought to myself, Well, people are going to be really puzzled by this, and they were. So there was some of that problem, too.
With rumors of reshoots and other problems during production, it was a film with such promise. It seems that there were too many misguided problems along the way. King’s insights are sad to hear, but show that sometimes the creators of such tales should be included in the adaptations of their works.
King seems optimistic that one day The Dark Tower will get another shot at the big screen. Unfortunately, it will not be anytime soon.[Entertainment Weekly]