The Dark Tower TV Show Now Has a Showrunner

Image: Sony
Image: Sony

We’ve barely heard anything about the plans to bring Stephen King’s Dark Tower world to the small screen since it was announced, to the point that no one was sure if it was still happening. But the show has taken a big step forward today, with the announcement that The Walking Dead’s Glen Mazzara will run the series.


Deadline reports that, on the day the long-awaited movie opens, Sony officially confirmed plans to move forward with the companion series with Mazzara at the helm. The series will tell the origins of Roland the Gunslinger, played by Idris Elba in the movie, based on flashbacks from King’s novels Wizard and Glass and The Gunslinger—something first revealed when the show was originally floated around a few years ago.

But most interesting in Deadline’s report is a mention that the series will be “independent” from the new movie—which is odd, considering that when it was first revealed, there was talk of Idris Elba starring in the show as the older Roland, acting as a framing device for the flashbacks to his earliest days as a Gunslinger and to tie the world of the TV series and movie together explicitly.


If the series is now fully independent of the movie—perhaps because the film’s fraught production has culminated in a sea of poor reviews so far—it’d make a lot of sense to play down connections for now, in the hopes that a successful show could re-spark interest in The Dark Tower as a movie franchise again, despite its disappointing start. At least we know that the show really is going to happen now.

James is a News Editor at io9. He wants pictures. Pictures of Spider-Man!

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Dr Emilio Lizardo

Boy, the reviews are bad. These art blurbs from some of the ones that RT considers favorable:

The Dark Tower is a shot-to-the-heart of cinematic intrigue, as Stephen King’s beloved story loses all magic in its big-screen adaptation.

The second half is better than the first half, but this isn’t remotely the sprawling epic that fans arguably deserved.

A mostly entertaining piece of fantasy pulp that is a victim of trying to do too much and too little at the same time.

It’s a highly competent and watchable paranoid metaphysical video game that doesn’t overstay its welcome, includes some luridly entertaining visual effects, and — it has to be said — summons an emotional impact of close to zero.

I think I’ll go see Detroit instead.