Javier Bardem or Viggo Mortensen Possibly Gunslingin’ in Ron Howard’s The Dark Tower

Despite being at least a couple of years away from a sure-thing release date, it looks like Ron Howard’s adaptation of the Stephen King “Dark Tower” series is well underway, with the New York Post reporting that Javier Bardem and Viggo Mortensen are running next-in-neck to land the lead, a character named Roland Deschain, a mysterious gunslinger in the film’s mystical world. Bardem, it would appear, has a slight lead over Mortensen.

The Post also has more on how Howard and screenwriter/producer Akiva Goldsman plan to tackle King’s massive series of books:

According to reports, they plan to start with an epic movie, then continue the story with the TV series, followed by a second film, and then a second TV season showing gunslinger Deschain as a young man. Then, the third movie will end the saga with Deschain as an older man.

I could definitely see either Bardem or Mortensen in the role, thought for my money Mortensen would be the better choice. Heck, he’s already played a cowboy once already in “Hidalgo”. Mind you, not that it matters — they’re both excellent actors, and either men could easily pull off the role.

The first “Dark Tower” is scheduled for 2013, so plenty of time for casting…