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No, Wait: The Dark Tower Might Happen After All After Budget Cuts
by Jamie Frevele | 1:58 pm, October 24th, 2011
Between this and Disney‘s Lone Ranger, ’tis the season of will they-won’t they for big budget movie deals. If you’ve been following the saga of the film adaptation of Stephen King‘s sci-fi/fantasy/western series, you’re aware that it went from huge to non-existent, to maybe existing. And now, producer Brian Grazer is strongly emphasizing the “existence” part of it, saying that they’ve made budget cuts to this gigantic production and it might be go for launch after all. He also says the movie’s ending might be even more satisfying than the book’s. But is it still going to be the planned behemoth TV/film deal starring Javier Bardem?
Speaking with Playlist, Grazer said that they were able to cut $45 million from the huge budget that was planned for the adaptation of The Dark Tower, saying that this thing was ready to be made.
“We found a way to cut out $45 million out of the budget without changing the scope and actually giving it a good ending,” Grazer said, suggesting a heavily re-worked approach. “In the $140 million draft, the ending wasn’t quite as satisfying. Now, we’ve got $45 million, $50 million out of the way and a really satisfying ending. It’s gonna get made.”
$100 million, however, is still only a budget for a single movie. A big movie, but just one movie. Back when this was first announced in April, it was being reported that Javier Bardem had signed on to play the lead, gunslinger Roland Deschain, in three movies plus a TV mini-series that would bridge them all together. But it was the huge scope that had Universal worried about committing to something so incredibly huge, and they dropped the project. That, however, was not enough to deter the team of producer Grazer, director Ron Howard, and screenwriter Akiva Goldsman, and they started looking elsewhere, shopping their project around various studios and then slicing away at the budget.
Cut to now, when Grazer has stated definitively: “It’s gonna get made.” One theory is that they’ll be taking this project a bit slower, trying to sell one movie at a time. That would make sense, considering the size of the budget and the past response by Universal. But again, nothing has been said about what The Dark Tower project now entails. Though it does still look like Bardem is the Gunslinger. Of course, knowing this project, that could also change on a dime.
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