Earlier this week, Sony invited a small group of film journalists on a trip to Bangor, Maine -- hometown of renowned author Stephen King. The trip was meant to raise awareness on The Dark Tower, which is now in theaters, though it included a tour of King's local haunts, many of which inspired stories from IT to Christine and Carrie. The night concluded with a screening of The Dark Tower that was packed with local fans, and King himself surprised everyone by showing up at the theater to intro the film. We were lucky enough to film that intro, and wanted to share it with you right here:
Nikolaj Arcel's The Dark Tower is a loose translation of a few books from Stephen King's much longer Dark Tower series. In this movie, a young boy named Jake Chambers (Tom Taylor) is pulled into the mysterious world of a Gunslinger named Roland (Idris Elba), who is on a mission of vengeance against The Man in Black (Matthew McConaughey). Fans of the books will realize that this movie actually starts somewhere around book three of the series, The Waste Lands, and makes references to events that happen in the beginning and the end of the narrative train. (Not Blaine the Mono, mind you. He's nowhere to be found, thankee sai.)
Because very few parts of The Dark Tower take place in Maine, there was little representation of that storyline on the tour. Instead, as part of the trip, we saw the actual storm drain that Stephen King looked at when he came up with the chilling opening of his story IT:
And drove past the store where he pulled the name of his classic villain, Randall Flagg:
This image continues to give me goosebumps. It's the Barrens, the shallow creek from IT where the Losers' Club fights off bullies with rocks. It's in King's neighborhood, and since he passed it on a daily basis, he worked it into that classic story.
The Dark Tower currently is in theaters. Our review of the new film can be found here. There are plans underway already to follow up this movie with a TV series, which one-time The Walking Dead showrunner Glen Mazzara would oversee. It might be a prequel, telling the story found in the Stephen King book Wizards and Glass. But The Dark Tower probably needs to sell some tickets this weekend to ensure that the show happens. We shall see how that plays out.