A few days back we heard a rumor that Ron Howard may walk from the Dark Tower project but in a recent interview, he says nothing of the sort.
The interview is mostly about Ron Howard and Brian Grazer’s 25 year partnership as Imagine Entertainment, but about half-way in there’s a small conversation about the movies and where things stand. In short, production still looks to be going ahead (in March) and with Howard at the helm.
Ron Howard still retains his earlier enthusiasm for Stephen King’s DT universe and justifies his involvement saying, “if you’re not out there taking some risks, if you’re just coasting along with your wins, then you’re not really trying.”
But it’s these risks, and that Howard was trying a “bold attempt to fast track” the start date (due to weather concerns – whatever that means), that forced Universal to be cautious and want to tighten up on the budget. Howard wouldn’t provide any hard numbers on what cuts he was asked for but did say, “Without putting a number on it, the cuts aren’t that deep or that radical.”
The last question Deadline asked Ron Howard in regards to the Dark Tower was, “Is Javier Bardem set to play the main gunslinger Roland Deschain?”
“Nobody is pay or play but he has said he wants to do it. We’ve spent a lot of time together. He’s fascinated by the character and has great instincts for Roland. I’m hoping when we go, he’s available and will join us.”
Bardem was never fully signed for the role, it only got as far as his agent “putting the finishing touches on the deal”.
Timing is always critical on such projects and if Bardem gets offered another interesting part before the green light, then Howard will not get his man.
The full interview transcript is available over at Deadline.