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Universal passes on Ron Howard’s The Dark Tower

Universal Pictures has passed on plans to adapt Stephen King’s 7-novel series Dark Tower into an ambitious big-screen and television project, Deadline reports:

The moment has come for Universal Pictures to fish or cut bait on The Dark Tower, the ultra-ambitious adaptation of the Stephen King 7-novel series that was going to encompass a trilogy of feature films and two limited run TV series. The studio has said, No Thanks. Universal has passed on going forward with the project, dealing a huge blow in the plan for Ron Howard to direct Akiva Goldsman’s script, with Brian Grazer, Goldsman and the author producing and Javier Bardem starring as gunslinger Roland Deschain. Now, the filmmakers will have to find a new backer of what might well be the most ambitious movie project since Bob Shaye allowed Peter Jackson to shoot three installments of The Lord of the Rings back to back.

Insiders said that Universal brass loved the filmmakers and the project, but couldn’t make it work with the current budget in its business model.

More details at Deadline.