Deadline caught up with Ron Howard, who is set to direct the first of three Steven King The Dark Tower adaptations, which will arrive in theaters May 17, 2013 from Universal Pictures. They write that they plan to turn King’s masterwork into a film trilogy with a network TV series programmed between films. Howard will direct the first film and the limited run series that will create a bridge to the second feature. “It is going well, and it has been incredibly stimulating to work on,” Howard said. “It’s dense, a great author’s life work is not to be taken lightly. It has been utterly fascinating to explore it, and we are having great creative conversations. I’ve begun tossing and turning at 3 in the morning over it, so that’s a good sign.” The books chronicle the mysterious The Gunslinger as he travels across a desolate and vaguely post-apocalyptic landscape in his quest for a black tower. Portals along the way eventually allow contact with our own modern world.