The latest in an apparently never-ending stream of Stephen King adaptations (following on from the upcoming, James Franco starring, 11.22.63), The Dark Tower is still an exciting prospect for fans of King and the fantasy genre as a whole. This epic tale – spanning 7 increasingly lengthy books – is going to need a big budget and perhaps even bigger stars in the cast to compete with readers’ imaginations. Considering that an adaptation has been rumoured since 2007 and the project has struggled to really get off the ground until recently (IMDB lists it as scheduled for release in 2017 – next year!), it seems like a good time to pick our ideal cast for this madcap adventure story. We’ll focus here on the major members of the cast, since as we know King isn’t the kind of author who likes to limit himself to just a few characters!
Roland Deschain – Viggo Mortensen
Although Idris Elba (to some fans’ dismay) already appears to have been cast in the main role of Roland the Gunslinger, it doesn’t mean we can stop dreaming about who we’d like to see fill those iconic cowboy boots. Mortensen has proven he’s a strong presence in both independent dramas (A History of Violence, Eastern Promises) and fantasy blockbusters (The Lord of the Rings series) so he’d be well suited to King’s trademark mixture of fantastical elements and gritty realism. I personally think Elba could do a great job as Roland, even if his casting has made fans question how well the movie will deal with the important question of race, but my personal preference would still be Viggo – right age, right look, and a great actor to boot.
Eddie Dean – Dane DeHaan
DeHaan has been slowly growing in popularity and renown over the last few years, due to his performances in films like Chronicle, The Place Beyond The Pines and (sadly) The Amazing Spider-Man 2 (well, we’ve all got to pay the bills somehow!) To play Eddie, we need someone who can convince as a charismatic former drug-addict with a big heart, and DeHaan (who has played James Dean in Life has the confidence and the look to live up to a true fan favourite. Apparently Aaron Paul has also expressed interest in this role, but he may be a little too old for Eddie.
Susannah Dean – Uzo Aduba
Aduba (best known for Orange is the New Black) has proven herself to be extremely adept at playing a multi-faceted, damaged yet lovable character (with an eerily similar name to this Dark Tower character). She’s even won awards for her work – more than once! But her name doesn’t seem to be coming up much on fan sites, as far as casting Susannah is concerned. Nevertheless, I reckon she could nail Susannah’s contradictions and make audiences fall in love with this streetwise, sharply intelligent and resourceful lady.
Jake Chambers – Jacob Tremblay
Hopefully they’ll wait a couple more years to film the third book in the series (The Wastelands) because a huge chunk of it is devoted to Jake and told from his point of view. I can’t think of any young male actor who could pull it off better than Jacob Tremblay. He knocked us all sideways in Lenny Abrahamson’s incredible adaptation of Room, giving the character Jack a vivid internal life and showing a great deal of courage and inquisitiveness – perfect for Jake Chambers.
The Man In Black – Michael Fassbender
It seems Matthew McConaughey has got his paws on this character, which could work really well, but I’d probably pick Michael Fassbender in dark, destructive mode. Think his turn in 12 Years A Slave mixed with the power of his Magneto in the X-men prequels and a dash of his sociopathic Steve Jobs in last year’s biopic, and you’re just about there. The Man in Black is the biggest of the series’ antagonists and needs to be someone who you can fear and be drawn to in equal measure. While McConaughey can probably pull that off now that he’s been through the McConaissance, it’d be great to see Fassbender leave his mark on the character.
So there we have it – my choices for the cast of the upcoming Dark Tower film (we’re not sure if they’re going to just do an adaptation of first book The Gunslinger yet). What do you think of these selections? And who would you go for in the rest of the cast? Let us know in the comments.
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