'The Dark Tower' Crumbles as Universal Officially Cancels Ron Howard Project

The ambitious three-movie and TV series was an adaptation of Stephen King’s fantasy Western.
Alex J. Berliner/abimages

The Dark Tower is dead...and no one is surprised.

Universal has officially closed the book on its ambitious three-movie and TV series adaptation of Stephen King’s fantasy Western from Imagine Entertainment, writer Akiva Goldsman and director Ron Howard.

But reports of its collapse have circulated for months as the studio and film team grappled with budgetary issues and a way to scale down the project. As THR previously reported, a fall start date was shelved, cast and crew were put on leave, and the studio hoped to possibly shoot it early next year.

STORY: 'Dark Tower' to Stay at Universal with Lower Budget

Imagine and Howard steadfastly denied that the project was officially dead but last week word leaked that Howard was prepping another movie, the Formula 1 racing pic Rush, to which Chris Hemsworth was attached to star.

Today was D-Day for Dark Tower because the studio had a July 15 deadline to commit to the movies or not. All the creatives have been told that the studio couldn't make the financials work.

This marks the second high-profile attempt at a Dark Tower adaptation to hit a wall. The first involved JJ Abrams and his Bad Robot banner.

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