Deadline is reporting that screenwriter Akiva Goldsman has turned in the latest draft for the first film of the proposed project to Warner Brothers who are expected to rule on whether or not to give a greenlight within the next two weeks.
Director Ron Howard’s ambitious plan for adapting the franchise calls for three films which are bridged by two television mini-series. Previously, Howard was developing the project at Universal, who ultimately passed on it, placing it in turn around. Howard took it to Warners, where it was thought that corporate subsidiary HBO would be a good fit for the television component of the project. If Warners decides to to go ahead with the Dark Tower adaption, it will mark the biggest investment in a single project since The Lord of the Rings.
One factor that could sway Warners’ thinking on the project is the involvement of Russell Crowe, who is in talks with Howard and producer Brian Grazer to play gunslinger Roland Deschain in the post-apocalyptic western. Previously, Javier Bardem had been attached to play the role.
Crowe certainly has some marquee value that would help the financially risky project. Plus, he has a good working relationship with Howard and Grazer having previously starred in the highly successful A Beautiful Mind. Crowe will also be featured as Superman’s biological father Jor-El in next summer’s Man Of Steel from Warners. Of course, if Man Of Steel underperforms and if Bardem gets solid reviews for his turn as a villain in the upcoming James Bond adventure Skyfall this fall, all involved may wind up regretting his loss.