While THE STAND appears to be facing a myriad of problems, Stephen King’s other big property, THE DARK TOWER finally appears to be gaining some real momentum. After what’s probably been a good decade of development, it looks like a cast is starting to materialize. There were rumors late last year that Idris Elba would be playing Roland the gunslinger, and that Matthew McConaughey would be taking on the role of the Man in Black. I don’t recall any reports confirming this, but if Deadline is to be believed, it looks like the pair has already signed on to join the ambitious adaptation.
In addition to those talents, they’ve also added actress Abbey Lee. You probably don’t recognize her name, and you may not even recognize her face, but she was perhaps most recognized as one of Immortan Joe’s wives in MAD MAX: FURY ROAD. The character she’ll be playing is reportedly named Tirana.
This bit of news seems to have come to a shock to many fans of the books. I haven’t read the books myself, but from what I’ve been able to find, the character of Tirana only plays a small role, and doesn’t even show up until the seventh book. Deadline even felt compelled to post an update to their post, stating:
“Readers are questioning the name of the character that Lee plays. Thatâ€™s what I heard they were calling this major character, and for die hard fans, I can tell you a few character qualities: sheâ€™s sexy and dangerous, she has fake human skin and cold snake-like eyes. She doesnâ€™t come in until the seventh volume, apparently, but sheâ€™s going to be starring in the first film.”
Sounds like some big changes are underway. Again, I can’t speak to the source material, but if the series is lacking in female representation, perhaps the studio felt the need to amp up the importance of a female side character in order to make up for this. This wouldn’t be the first time this has happened, but given the rabid fan base that these DARK TOWER books have, I can’t imagine this news will be taken well.
Right now, it’s unclear if the THE DARK TOWER adaptation will exist solely as a film series, as there appears to be a complementary TV series in development. Years back, there were plans to have the adaptation be a trilogy a films with a TV season in between each film. This can still be the plan, but the entire soap opera of this adaptation is so convoluted that it’s hard to tell how the producers are planning this one. Given that they’ve already started casting the adaptation, however, I can imagine they have some plan in mind. We just don’t know what it is yet.
What are your thoughts on the casting of Lee? Do you think it’s a good idea for the adaptation to ramp up the importance of the character of Tirana? Let us know in the comments down below!