Matthew McConaughey Circling Stephen King's 'Dark Tower' Adaptation

Matthew McConaughey AFI Awards - H 2015
<p>Matthew McConaughey AFI Awards - H 2015</p>   |   AP Images/Invision
Nikolaj Arcel is directing the movie, which Sony envisions as a global franchise.

Matthew McConaughey is in early talks to star in The Dark Tower, Columbia Pictures’ adaptation of Stephen King’s epic fantasy Western.

Nikolaj Arcel is directing the movie, which Sony envisions as a global franchise with both a movie and television components.

McConaughey's involvement is in the early stages. Sources tell The Hollywood Reporter that McConaughey met with Arcel a week and a half ago and is interested in taking on the project. However, negotiations have yet to begin.

This is the first major thespian spark the project has seen since 2011, when Javier Bardem was in negotiations to star. That was before the ambitious undertaking went through budget cuts and moved studios, jumping from Universal to Sony with several years of limbo in between.

Akiva Goldsman, Ron Howard, Brian Grazer and Erica Huggins, who have been trying to mount the adaptation for close to a decade, are producing. MRC is also producing.

King's Western-style fantasy series is set mostly in an alternate world that's heavy on magic and centers on a man named Roland Deschain who is part of a knightly order of gunslingers. The character is on a quest for the tower, which is known as a nexus of many universes.

McConaughey would play the Man in Black, the antagonist (and a King mainstay who has appeared in several non-Dark Tower books as well) whose mission is to stop Deschain from reaching the tower.

The Oscar-winning actor, who recently wrapped filming the dramas Gold and Free State of Jones, is one of the few actors without a franchise in Hollywood. That would change if he signs on for Tower.