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One of the hottest tickets in Hollywood right now is Nikolej Arcel's adaptation of Stephen King's legendary fantasy series The Dark Tower. With production recently getting underway, the cast list is still being revealed to us, with one of the villains being the latest revelation. London Has Fallen's Jackie Earle Haley has been cast as the menacing Richard Sayre, a humanoid leader of the vampires in the world of gunslinger Roland Deschain.
Deadline reported the casting coup that landed Haley as a figure that plays prominently in the last three books of The Dark Tower's saga. Richard Sayre is a "can-toi," or "low man" who has a distinctive look about him. Namely, he has an ever static pool of blood on his forehead. Sayre works for the Sombra Corporation, which in turn reports to the big bad of The Dark Tower universe, the Crimson King. No matter how you slice it, Sayre is one bad dude.
The most interesting part about this casting announcement, besides the revelation that Jackie Earle Haley will be playing the part of Richard Sayre, is the fact that Sayre is even involved in the film at all. Were this a straight adaptation of The Dark Tower from book one, Sayre wouldn't even have a place in this story, as he doesn't show up until book five, Wolves of the Calla. While it was mentioned previously that the film adaptation would start in the middle of all of the action, we didn't think they'd bring someone from that late in the series into the fold just yet.
In fact, bringing Sayer into The Dark Tower so quickly has us thinking that maybe the series of Stephen King adaptations is being reigned into three condensed installments, with the first one foregoing / alluding to all of the set-up in the first couple of books. If this assumption is correct, then this means that the TV tie-in that was supposed to help tell the story of the seven book arc is probably kaput at this point. We wouldn't be surprised if this was the case, considering how expensive of a prospect running a Dark Tower film and a concurrent TV series would be. But the question is still the same one we walked in with: how the hell is The Dark Tower going to exist in a trimmed form, while also honoring the original story?
Although, if we need to be introduced to the vampiric evil that is Richard Sayre this early in The Dark Tower saga, then at least a top tier talent like Jackie Earle Haley can step up to the plate with his special brand of captivating menace and knock this role out of the park. With the fantasy epic also claiming Idris Elba, Abbey Lee, and Matthew McConaughey as part of its cast roster, The Dark Tower has an impressive pedigree to live up to. We'll find out soon enough when the film is released on February 17, 2017.