The 'Dark Tower' Pitch That Won Over Matthew McConaughey

A hero is only as good as their villain — and in The Dark Tower, the villain is all bad.

Walter/The Man in Black (played by Matthew McConaughey in the new film) has become a mainstay not just of Stephen King's fantasy series of novels, but throughout many of King's works. He's a mysterious force of evil, and he's quite unlike many of the villains that are en vogue in today's films (in that he's got no redeeming qualities).

"A lot of these kind of films lately, are pretty great," director Nikolaj Arcel tells Heat Vision. "A lot of the villains have real, clear motivations or personal dramas."  

Look no further than Michael Keaton's The Vulture in Spider-Man: Homecoming, which the director recently watched ("Michael Keaton's character is great. He has a real reason," says Arcel).

But that's not what Arcel wanted for his movie — and neither did McConaughey, who faces off against Idris Elba's Roland, The Last Gunslinger.

"What was fun for us was Walter is — and always will be in all the Stephen king movies — just plain effing evil. There's no excuse. He's not trying to say, 'well I was mistreated as a child.' None of that," he says.

That's what McConaughey picked up on immediately, prompting him to call Acel after reading the script.

"He said, 'I guess he's kind of like the devil.' I said, 'Yes, he is.' He said, 'OK, I'm in,'" recalls Arcel. "He loved there's no excuse for his badness. He is pure evil. He wants chaos. That is something he grabbed onto and felt was fun."

The Dark Tower opens Friday.

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