Much like the shifting of time and space in author Stephen King’s The Dark Tower book series, it’s difficult to get a grasp on how long rumors of a film series featuring the gunslinger Roland Deschain and the mysterious sorcerer “the man in black,” Randall Flagg, have been floating through the desert of pre-production. And while director Nikolaj Arcel was officially hired last year to helm the project, we still didn’t have an idea of who our Roland or Randall would be, except for a smattering of whispers and speculation.

However, today, Stephen King and actors Idris Elba (Luther, The Office) and Matthew McConaughey (The Wolf of Wall Street, True Detective season 1) have taken to Twitter to officially confirm that The Dark Tower has its main protagonist and antagonist. Elba will portray the gunslinger Roland, with McConaughey playing the sorcerer who has made appearances in King’s other books, most notably The Stand and The Eyes of the Dragon.

Elba and McConaughey announced their involvement with a cute Twitter back-and-forth that gave a nod to their characters.

Speaking to Entertainment Weekly in an interview published this morning, King and Arcel address the casting of the series’ nemeses.

“For me, it just clicked. [Elba]’s such a formidable man,” Arcel says. “I had to go to Idris and tell him my vision for the entire journey with Roland and the ka-tet. We discussed, who is this character? What’s he about? What’s his quest? What’s his psychology? We tried to figure out if we saw the same guy. And we absolutely had all the same ideas and thoughts. He had a unique vision for who Roland would be.”

As for McConaughey, Arcel notes, “Matthew is an incredible actor who can do anything. That’s how I feel about [the man in black]. He could do anything.”

It’s interesting to note that McConaughey was once rumored to be attached to the silver screen adaptation of King’s The Stand, which would have featured the actor as Randall Flagg in that film as well. That movie has been put on an indefinite hold at the moment.

For now, only one Dark Tower film is scheduled, with the possibility of more to follow. The Dark Tower, directed by Nikolaj Arcel and starring Idris Elba and Matthew McConaughey, lands in theaters on January 13, 2017.

[Source: Entertainment Weekly]