The Dark Tower budget cuts and new ending
It looks like good news for everyone wanting to see The Dark Tower adapted to film - no, another studio hasn't picked up the film to get behind the adaptation, at least not yet - but it would appear that there have been budget cuts made on the production and in the process the ending has changed, again.
Now is the point that the fans of the Stephen King seven book series will be concerned, because the comment from Brian Grazer suggests that this is a rewrite of the script, and with another change of ending and budget restrictions it could have an unknown change on the story.
However, Brian Grazer does seem positive that it's all good for The Dark Tower, and not something that should cause alarm, and as always I will remind you that this kind of thing happens all the time with films - budget reworks and cuts, script rewrites, and there's no way of telling if the first script was right or the second, or even the fifth.
The story is all about a single comment that Grazer made when he was questioned about the project as he was out promoting Tower Heist. The Playlist have the comment where he said:
"We found a way to cut out $45 million out of the budget without changing the scope and actually giving it a good ending...In the $140 million draft, the ending wasn't quite as satisfying. Now, we've got $45 million, $50 million out of the way and a really satisfying ending. It's gonna get made."
We knew that the project had left Universal who had decided not to pursue it, but the team behind it of Producer Brian Grazer, Director Ron Howard and Screenwriter Akiva Goldsman were all keen to see it made and were hopeful of finding the project a home and the funding elsewhere.
So the budget has dropped from US $140million down to something around $90-95million, that's a lot less, and there's a lot of money that's poured out of the project. It does raise the question of where it's come from, even if Grazer assures us that it hasn't changed the scope of the story, it has to have been taken out of somewhere.
One would hope, and I say this as a fan, that the film is still being viewed as the first adaptation in the series to bring the whole story to life across all of the books, and that means they could have easily just pulled back the first film and pushed more into the first television series to follow it in order to prove the audience before getting the funding for the second film.
Now that comes down to you Dark Tower fan. When it arrives, and I'm sure it will, it's up to you to make your presence felt at the box office. Go see it around opening weekend and make sure the studio know that there's an audience for it. Of course that's a long way off yet.
Other news is that ending. We must also realise that if they are still moving forward with the multiple film and television series idea to span the entire story that this is not the ultimate end of the story but a bridging gap to the next one.
I fear I can't even remember the end of the first novel as it was so long ago, however I do think it really was a bridging gap and there wasn't a huge ending to it, it really did keep you hanging on. I wonder how they have changed the ending, again, to deliver something better and also help with that budget reduction.
Grazer says that the original scripted ending wasn't working and this version, with the budget reduction through it, has delivered an even better one. Perhaps he does mean they have pulled back the ending from the book and stopped it a little short. What could the ending to the first film be?