Idris Elba talks the 'mystical elements' of The Gunslinger in The Dark Tower

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Jul 14, 2016, 3:28 PM EDT

While we have to wait until early next year before we take the plunge into the world of the big-screen adaptation of Stephen King's The Dark Tower, a new interview with star Idris Elba has unveiled a few intriguing tidbits about his character.

Speaking in the newest issue of Entertainment Weekly, Elba talked about where we find his character, Roland Deschain, aka The Gunslinger, at the start of the movie (which will be a new original story borrowing elements from the various books in the series):

“When we meet Roland he’s a bit lost. He’s been walking around for a long time, so he definitely feels like a man who’s… coiled. He’s a protector. He just needs something to reawaken that part of himself. Until he meets Jake, he doesn’t have anything to believe in, really. He’s really pent up and releases his soul through [defending] the boy.”

Jake Chambers (Tom Taylor) is a teenager who lives in our world and has psychic abilities called “The Shine.” His magic has the power to break the ethereal beams that keep the Tower standing and keep order in the universe and Matthew McConaughey’s villain, a powerful warlock known as The Man in Black, aka Walter, is searching for him for the very purpose of bringing down Mid-World. And this is what reawakens Roland’s purpose. To protect the boy and regain his nobility in the process.

Elba also explained where his character comes from. Who he is. And what his relationship to the Man in Black is.

“There’s a mystical element to him. He’s about 200 years old. He’s been around for a long time, and has a deep-rooted connection with the [supernatural] nature of the film. Roland’s completely tuned into that. When you meet him, he’s very much a stoic man, doesn’t want to talk. But when you get to know him, he really knows quite a bit about the world and his world’s history. And he very much knows the way The Man in Black works. He’s so clued up on that, which is what frustrates him, because he can’t catch him.”

Directed by Nikolaj Arcel (A Royal Affair), the doors to The Dark Tower will open on Feb. 17, 2017.

(via EW)