After the, shall we say, less-than-stellar box office and critical performance of the 2017 feature film The Dark Tower, it comes as little surprise that Amazon Studios has opted not to order the series. Executive producer/showrunner Glen Mazzara, who adapted Stephen King‘s sprawling bestselling book series, is reportedly shopping the pilot scripts out to potential buyers with MRC, according to Deadline. The writing may have been on the wall when Amazon opted to go with the pilot-first route for The Dark Tower rather than a full series order from the get-go, but the coffin nail was already driven in back in 2017 when the feature failed across the board. This latest setback is but an extension of that.
On one hand, Amazon already has its own sprawling fantasy series … a pair of them, actually: Lord of the Rings should be a no-brainer, while the Wheel of Time series is a bit riskier. Perhaps The Dark Tower was a bridge too far, or perhaps, as Deadline says, the pilot just wasn’t up to snuff for the execs. But that would be a little strange considering that Mazzara has 20-odd years of TV experience under his belt, including The Shield, Damien, and The Walking Dead. The TV movie / pilot even attempted to distance itself from the big-screen counterpart thanks to a complete recasting and a story set well before the events of the film, opting to tell the Gunslinger Roland Deschain’s origin so that audiences might get to know him before being flung into the insane worlds of King’s overarching series. Time will tell if we ever get to see what Mazzara & Co. cooked up, but for now, it’ll have to cool a bit.
Here’s how Mazzara and the creative team responded on Twitter: