Anthony Northrup on Stephen King’s Dollar Babies

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cover of Stephen King - Dollar Baby: The BookAnthony Northrup is a Stephen King enthusiast who puts his pen where his mouth is. Okay, maybe not literally, but he certainly backs up all his acclaimed King passion by a long shot. Anthony has hosted two Stephen King Dollar Baby film festivals in addition to playing cohost to Stephen King Rules film festivals on top of essaying his King fandom (as well as celebrating other writers and filmmakers) via regularly published articles in his local newspaper. He also founded and maintains a fun and popular group on Facebook called All Things King (ATK).

Most recently, he published a behemoth of a book titled Stephen King – Dollar Baby: The Book. Released in 2021 through BearManor Media, it weighs in at a whopping 576 pages. Suffice to say the book is chock full of everything you might want to know about Stephen King Dollar Babies, but were afraid to sacrifice the time and sanity to find out.

And if that’s not enough to satiate your beating dark heart for all thing’s King, the upcoming release of Stephen King – Dollar Baby: The Sequel is due out later this year (2023) and promises to be even more massive and packed with even more Dollar Baby trivia than you can swing a burning Saint Bernard at.

In addition, Anthoney also contributed a forward to Fanzine: Stephen King Editon, which explores King’s books and films up until 1990. He is also a newly minted yearly contributor to the Stephen King Annual Calendar from the Overlook Connection.

Don’t ask me how Anthony found the time, but I’m grateful he managed to square away a small break to sit down with me and chat about this phenomenal program in which aspiring film makers can adapt a Stephen King short story  into a non-commercial film at the cost of a buck.

Sit back and enjoy as Anthony and I delve into all things Dollar Baby such as how it all started, how we can see ‘em and, for those wanting to take it to the next level and beyond, how to make your own Dollar Baby even if all you have is a cell phone, a dream, and a few good friends who owe you a favor.

(Interview conducted by Rick Hipson)

CEMETERY DANCE: Anthony, I’m super pumped up today because I get to speak with a walking encyclopedia of Stephen King, particularly when it comes to his legendary mythical Dollar Baby projects. For those who don’t know what a Dollar Baby is, I guess that might sound a little bit devious, especially for babies. So for those that don’t know, what the heck is Dollar Baby?

ANTHONEY NORTHRUP: How did it all get started? Okay, well, first of all, thank you, Rick, for having me here. And hello to all your readers out there. The Dollar Baby deal, Stephen King started in the late ’70s. He wasn’t at the big superstar status at that time, he only had a few books and a few short stories out. But he had this idea where he wanted independent film makers, students, to make short films based on his short stories for $1 and a signed contract. If you agreed to that, then you would make the movie, send it to him, he would watch it. And if he liked it, you got played around film fests all around the world.

So here we are 2023 and there’s been tons of Dollar Baby movies made since then, all around the world, everywhere from America  to Germany to Europe to everywhere, and from all age groups and all walks of life. Then in the ’80s they had the Dollar Baby Film Fest with the original directors like James Cole and many others. Then it just took a little slow point for a little while and then it picked up again into the ’90s and 2000. And now it’s just a freight train. 

That’s what a Dollar Baby is. It’s a signed contract for a dollar that you make a short film based on a Stephen King short story, that has to get his seal of approval.

Very cool. And I understand part of the Dollar Baby deal is that Hollywood folks need not apply. It’s only for filmmakers who aren’t intending to make their films commercial purposes. 

That’s correct. No commercial success. You cannot make any money on this. No profit. It is strictly made for film festivals only. I have been very fortunate enough to be part of these film festivals as host or part host and it’s a great experience. We had two festivals that were seen around the world last year and one in 2001 called the Stephen King Rules Dollar Baby Film Fest. That was wonderful because all the fans around the world got to see it online for a three-day pass. In 2021, Stephen King himself approved and promoted that festival on his Twitter account, which he has never done for any festival ever. We were blown away when that happened. And then it happened again in August of 2022. But this time, not just live, but it was also in the Alternating Currents Film Fest in Davenport, Iowa. So, it was live on streaming to see around the world, but it was also live in person. And that was a really great experience last year.

Sounds incredible. I definitely want to talk to you more about the festivals and what might be coming up with that, but if I can just back up a bit because I’m always about the birth of a thing and where it came from. You mentioned before that dollar babies started with filmmakers like James Cole. Was his Dollar Baby film the very first one? 

vhs cover of The Woman in the Room/The BoogeymanNo, the very first Dollar Baby it was The Boogeyman (1982) from Jeffrey C. Schiro. But here’s the thing. Frank Darabont did The Woman in the Room (1983) and there’s been this kind of long story about who technically was the first Dollar Baby. Frank Darabont got the rights to The Woman in the Room, but Jeff did The Boogeyman, and that came out first. About a year later, they put the two movies together on a VHS tape and it was rented and sold at that time in the early ’80s. So technically, Frank got the rights for his first but Jeff made his first so you can take your pick of who the first was. Most people say it was Jeff’s The Boogeyman which was technically the first Dollar Baby. 

That sounds kind of like a chicken and an egg scenario. Having chatted with Frank, I’m sure he would be more than happy to give the credit to somebody else. It was incredible chatting with him a while back about some other stuff. He lauded The Woman in the Room and the Dollar Baby deals as the very reason for his existence as a filmmaker. He told me he felt none of his movies would have been made if not for Stephen King and his generosity, 

Frank is great and, of course, he went on to great success with The Shawshank Redemption, The Green Mile and The Mist. If I may, I have a quick story about Darabont. In the early ’90s, I used to work at a laser video store in the valley in Southern California, and a lot of celebrities would come in there and Frank was a regular customer. He would come in and talk and he was super, super cool. This was before Shawshank, so I only knew him from the Indiana Jones Chronicles, the TV series. That’s what he was working on at the time. We were talking about Indiana Jones and the next time he came in the store he pulled me to the side he said “Hey, Tony, I got something for you,” and he gave me an issue of an Indiana Jones comic book. 

That’s amazing. That comic book store was the place to be it sounds like. 

Yeah, there’s a lot of a lot of big people who used to come in there every day. My boss said just treat them like regular people. And I’m like, I’m cool Dave.  I can treat them like regular people, but he didn’t say how big the names would be.  

Mick Garrison was another one. And Mick’s been a great friend for over 30 years. We all know, he’s done more King movies than anyone else. But yeah, that was that was a good time back then. 

No kidding. When was it you first discovered the Dollar Baby deals? 

I found out about the Dollar Babies two ways. To me, there’s different levels of Stephen King fandom. You can buy the books, you can watch the movies, you can buy the collectibles, you know, there’s that status. But then there’s the status of people who want to go further than that. They want to learn more about the man. They want to learn about where he got his ideas and the history of his life and his stories. There was a period where I wanted to do what I call the Stephen King scholar years.

cover of The Complete Stephen King EncyclopediaSo, I started buying all these books about Stephen King, majority of them being from the greatest man in the world, Stephen Spignesi. And he wrote a book called The Complete Stephen King Encyclopedia which is a monstrosity size Holy Grail of books. We’re talking over 800 pages, I thought, Oh, my God, it’s gonna take me forever to read because it’s all in tiny print and everything.

As I was reading it, there was this chapter in there by James Cole, and he was talking about the Dollar Babies. And I’m like, what’s a Dollar Baby? I’ve never heard of this before. I’ve learned all this stuff about King, but I’ve never heard this before. And so I read the book and the chapter and so forth. A few months later on social media, I see a friend of mine’s friend of a friend type thing. And there was a guy named Billy Hansen talking about his Dollar Baby film, Survivor Type. And I thought, you know what? I’m going to reach out. So, I did and I said, “Can I interview you and talk about your Dollar Baby film?” We did the interview and he was so impressed that he told his Dollar Baby friends. Next thing you know, I get this snowball of people who want me to interview them to talk about their Dollar Baby films. And it was kinda like a light shined down on this group of people because they did their movie, it played in some fests, and then that was it, it was over. it’s like, well, somebody’s interested in something I did? It brought them back into the spotlight again, and I think it was kind of like a shot in the arm for the Dollar Baby universe, so to speak, when this all happened.

That’s incredible. I’m not gonna call it divine intervention, but it seems almost like the universe was kind of shining down on you and decided to align a few stars here and align these people here and get this going for you. 

That’s exactly what happened, Rick. I mean, it’s one of those things in life where things just fall into places that are meant to be or, if you’re talking in Stephen King terms, cotton. 

Another great thing that spawned off all that was when Billy and I became really good friends because of this. In that year that I interviewed him, in 2013, I was covering the Crypto Con horror convention in Minnesota, which, if you’ve been to a horror, you know what they’re like. You go there, you have fun meeting celebrities. They play films and so forth. So, I covered the convention. And I went to North Dakota writers award for that for a local newspaper. And I told Billy, because they invited me back for 2014. And I said, Billy, wouldn’t be cool if we had a Dollar Baby film fest at this convention? He said, well, let me talk to King’s office and see what we can do. Boom. They said, okay, we got the approval. So, I hosted the first annual Stephen King Dollar Baby Film Fest at Cryptic Con in 2014. And it was such a big hit. they asked me back, so I went back again in 2015 did it again. And it was even a bigger crowd, more movies. And it was a lot of fun. And then in 2016, they wanted to do it again. And I said no, no, I want to kind of focus on my own writing, and so forth and took a break from it for a little bit. But then, like I mentioned earlier, in 2021, and 2022, I was part of the Stephen King Rules Dollar Baby Film Fest. So that’s four of them all together.

That’s fantastic. How many Dollar Baby movies are there currently? 

That’s hard to say. Because number one, I mean, we’re talking 1977. This is 2023. There’s hundreds of short stories, but there’s only a certain amount you can make a film from. They have a list of choices on King’s official page.

The problem is that some people go out there and they’ll make a movie, and they’ll say it’s based on King story, but they didn’t get the authorization. They didn’t get the contract. They didn’t play by the rules, so I don’t count those as Dollar Babies. I only watch or review or put in my books real Dollar Babies, they got this King seal of approval contract.

With that in mind, when King grants his deal to these budding filmmakers, does he also put in as part of his stipulation in the contract that once they make that movie, it can’t be made again by anybody else? How does that work? 

You mean the story? 


Oh, no, no. There’s a list of maybe, I don’t know, twenty or twenty-five short stories that a filmmaker can choose from. And there are many, many versions of that same story on the list. “The Man Who Loved Flowers,” I think there’s fifty or sixty versions of that out there. A filmmaker can make the same movie as other filmmakers. But that’s okay because there’s so many different visions. I’ve seen some versions of some of the short stories where they’re musicals. I’ve seen them as animations I’ve seen them as comedies, I’ve seen them gory. There are so many different visions out there.

What’s so great about the dollar babies is that these directors have their own vision and what they see in the story, and some of them even expand it. They’ll make a prequel or sequel. And I love that. I love that creativity. There’s so much talent out there that I’ve seen. My heart goes out to every filmmaker who’s ever made one of these. It really does.

With all the films that you’ve seen, I mean, that’s got to be so interesting because you get used to the same story, especially an older story. Has there ever been an instance where you watched a film that was so out there, I mean, a musical, I can only imagine what that must have been like, or a Dollar Baby film you saw which may have taken a completely different perspective on a story you flet was really good?

People always ask me all the time, what’s your favorite Dollar Baby film you’ve seen, or what’s the best. I can’t say which one is the best because they all are great in their own way. There’s something about each and every one of them that is special. That someone out there took a camera, had a vision, had a dream and made that happen is in itself the best.

poster for A Very Tight PlaceIf you want to be more specific, Billy Hanson’s Survivor Type was definitely the goriest I’ve ever seen. Stephen Tramontana has got to be the sickest with A Very Tight Place. Rhea Ivanova, she did an animated Dollar Baby, Beachworld, in which she did all the art herself and it was just mind blowing. The list goes on and on. James Douglas’s The Doctor’s Case had full-on production, like something you would see in the movie theater and pay your five bucks to go see. There are so many wonderful adaptations.

Anthony, it’s got to be inspiring to follow these amazing filmmakers through their journey as they start out with a Dollar Baby, and then see them progress in their career. I mentioned Frank Darabont earlier and I think he’s a perfect example of what’s possible. Can you think of any other filmmakers you’ve seen throughout the years, and you think, wow, they gone on and done amazing things and it all started with a Dollar Baby? Or even a filmmaker you’ve seen make a Dollar Baby that you thought this one’s gonna make it, but they just haven’t yet? Nobody knows about them yet, but they will. 

Wow. Well, two-part answer on this one. First of all, as far as the ones who have gone on to other things, a lot of the directors went on to other things, they went on to TV shows, or more movies, or Netflix TV series, or people like James Douglas, who opened up a place to go for people learn how to act and things like that. Some of them went on to write books. Some of them are just doing, you know, local, independent films.

What’s sad is that there are some that didn’t go on to other things. They made their film, and they went back to their nine to five job or maybe came on hard times or something like that. And it’s kind of a little sad, because they have such great talent, you just wish the best for them, but at least they had those fifteen minutes of fame and that’s what they’re known for. What I always tell them is, hey, you’re part of the Stephen King universe now. You’re in the history books of Stephen King because you made a Dollar Baby. It’s there, it’s never gone away. And that makes them feel better. I’m glad I can say that to them. 

I really appreciate you saying that. And I do want to talk to you more about the festivals and what that means to you and the filmmakers, but I first want to piggyback off something you mentioned some of these filmmakers going back to do the nine-to-five thing for any number of personal professional reasons.

I love that you said no matter what else they do, they’ve got this film, but how are these films, as far as you know, archived? Is there any sort of singular place that’s managed like a library where some can access and watch a Dollar Baby film?

This goes back to the contract and the original rules. You cannot see these movies anywhere except at a film festival. There are some people who break the rules, and they will see them on social media or YouTube somewhere like that. That’s a big no-no and I lose total respect for anyone who tries to do that. Respect the contract, respect the rules, respect Stephen King.

My suggestion is to watch Stephen King’s website, watch Stephen King fan pages, and keep an eye out on the next festival announcement where it might be in your local town, in another state, another country, even on online like we did with the Stephen King Rules thing. That’s where you watch him. That’s where you get your chance. And that’s why those two festivals that I was part of were such a success. The comments from those fans watching, they were like kids in a candy store and were like, where have these been? I’ve never heard of this. I’ve never seen it. Thank you for doing this. That’s a great feeling that we were able to spread that to the world those three days. 

Absolutely. And that’s a great segue to talk to you about the festival because I would love to know what it takes to put something like that on. What kind of a team do you put together? Let’s face it, he’s Stephen King, you put his name on an event and people are going to show up and you might find out you need a bigger gate especially if they’ve heard rumors about how the last fest was a great one.

Stephen King Rules posterYeah, there was a time when they were having a lot of the festivals, but like I said, there was a, there was a quiet period for a while. Then they started to come back up again. The two I was originally involved with, the Crypticon ones, credit goes to Billy Hanson for making the connection and to Nick Kaufman, who ran Crypticon at the time. I thank them both for that. That’s how those two festivals came about. I’m just a stone’s throw from Minnesota, so I just hopped on over there and did my thing for a couple of days and had a great time. The crowd response was amazing, it really was. The two Stephen King Rules festivals, that credit goes to Norm Coyne, James Douglas and Leah Coughlin.

James not only helped put this whole thing together, being a Dollar Baby himself with The Doctor’s Case, they did all the footwork groundwork, phone calls, all that kind of stuff. I was honored enough to be asked along as a host because of the book. They wanted someone hands on who would know about these things and so they had me be a part of it. It was such a great hit even though it was online and during the pandemic. The people down in Port Iowa last August said, hey, we want you guys to come here and do it, but we want to do it live. We all flew there and that was an incredible experience because it wasn’t just online. It wasn’t just live for three days, but three of the Dollar Babies came there in person to the festival: Steve Tramontana, Rob Darren and Paul Inman, and it was great to meet those guys in person after I’ve already interviewed them for my second book. A couple of friends of mine flew from out of state so they were there. It was just amazing to have real Dollar Babies in person in studio at the festival. It made it even bigger and better and that was just great.

That’s great you kept rocking it with the festival all the way through the pandemic. I applaud people who did that because what else do the rest of us have to do during the pandemic, especially at the height of the lockdown? I mean, what a great way to bring in a lot more people that maybe wouldn’t have watched it otherwise. 

Well, yeah, and we really wanted to do it live in a location somewhere that first time you know, but because of the pandemic, we had to do it online. There was no other way we could have done it. But, at the same time, it brought a lot of happiness, a lot of cheer, a lot of uplifting during such an otherwise dark time. And there were fans out there that were just like we needed this…we needed something cool. 

This seems a good time to ask you: What do you say to people wanting to check out a Dollar Baby festival?

Again, you would have to check the Stephen King website or the Stephen King fan pages and look for any kind of announcements that are made or, you know, just Google it and look up Stephen King film fests. These don’t happen all the time. They don’t happen several times a year like horror conventions. You can almost go anywhere and there’s a horror convention. These are very rare treats, so to speak. I would love for them to be all the time. But unfortunately, it’s not. As soon as you hear, you better get there because it’s your only chance and you’re not gonna see it again. I can’t say where the next one’s gonna be. I can’t say if there’s gonna be a third Stephen King Rules Fest. Maybe. Maybe? (chuckles). We’ll see what happens.

Until then, I understand you have a book or two that is in fact sold commercially so that we can enjoy as close to a Dollar Baby festival experience as possible, even if we don’t get a chance to get to experience one in person. 

Okay, here’s the plug people. Stephen King Dollar Baby: The Book, is my first book that came out in January 2021 and did very well. This book is for those who can’t get to a festival. This is the next best thing. This will tell you everything you need to know, want to know, never knew before about Stephen King’s Dollar Babies and its the history. There are interviews, trivia, fun facts, celebrity contributors, everything you would want to know is in there.

So if you can’t get to a festival, then pick up the Dollar Baby book. You’ll miss the next best thing. 

And I believe you’re working on another Dollar Baby book right now, aren’t you?

Yes, I am. It was originally supposed to be out last year, but I got an extension because there was a couple of very special ones I wanted to add in there. More importantly, I wanted to have the Stephen King Rules Festival from Davenport, which was in August, I wanted that to be in the book. It had to be in the book, as I had asked for an extension so I can have that in there. The first one was called Stephen King – Dollar Baby: The Book. And the second one is called Stephen King – Dollar Baby: The Sequel. It will be out later this year. It is packed full of a deep, deep, deep history of Dollar Babies. Lots of surprises. A lot of cool contributors, very famous contributors. I love it. I think it’s gonna be awesome in the end, but it will be out later this year. 

I’m one hundred percent looking forward to that. 

Anthony, you kind of teased us a little bit by mentioning a couple of times how celebrities have played a part in these Dollar Babies. Obviously, the Dollar Babies are meant for up-and-coming, independent filmmakers. Where do the celebrities you mentioned come into play? Were you referring to a cameo we should be watching, some kind of sponsorship for your festivals, or something else entirely? Reveal the tease if you will. 

Are you talking about the summaries in the book or celebrities in the films?

In the films.

Oh, well, you know that goes to the director of that film. For example, James Douglas who did The Doctor’s Case, he has Denise Crosby in his film, who we all know from Pet Sematary and Star Trek: The Next Generation. William B. Anderson, The Cigarette Smoking Man from The X-Files is also in his film.

But no, it goes to the director themselves. If they have friends in the industry, and they say, hey, do me a solid. They’ll throw them in their movie as little favor and next thing you know, you’re watching this Dollar Baby and you’re like, “Oh! There’s so and so.” That makes it even film even cooler. 

I guess it’s a “who you know” kind of thing, you know? 

Definitely. I think that’s a lot of what it is with filmmaking, it’s who you know, and how good you are at making money, or at least how good you are at getting other people to spend money so you can make a film. That might be more accurate. 

What would you say would be the biggest impact you’ve seen Dollar Babies have have on some of the careers and on the works of Stephen King themselves and how they’re presented?

First of all, as far as the individual filmmaker’s career, I mean, think about it. If you were a filmmaker, and you were going to do your next project, or a few projects down the road or what have you, or you’re writing a book, or whatever it is, and someone looks at your resume, and they say, okay, well, he worked on this show, he wrote this for that movie, oh! Stephen King Dollar Baby. Once they see the name, that’s gonna draw your eye and your attention right away. So that person would look at that resume and be like, immediately, hey, this guy was part of Stephen King. Let’s talk. Let’s do something. Right. I don’t know too much about that part of the filmmaking because I’m not into that part, career-wise or professional-wise, but as far as the impact, once again, these directors are part of the Stephen King universe. They’re in the history books.

Me  personally, if I had done a Dollar Baby I would be so proud to be part of that world. Here you are on a list with Christine and Cujo and The Stand and all these great classics that we all love and then you see your Dollar Baby film listed on there as an adaptation. What bigger honor is there as a Stephen King fan, as a filmmaker?

Anthony, I suppose I’d be remiss if I didn’t ask if you’ve considered picking up a camera or pen and doing something with one of these Dollar Babies?

I get that question a lot. I really do. People say all the time, you need to do a Dollar Baby. I’m not a director. I know how I would like to see a movie made, but I’m not a director, I would like to be maybe part of a production or maybe the side guy to throw some input to the directors. I prefer to leave it to professionals. But I would like to be involved in some way. I am currently working with a Dollar Baby filmmaker, Rob Darren, who directed Mute. I’m currently working with him on a film that will be coming out based on a short story that I wrote. So that’s an honor in itself to be working with him. Rob was one of the ones that was at the festival last year and he’s a great guy, great talent. So yeah, I wouldn’t write one, but I would like to be part of one.

Totally fair. You had mentioned to me previously there’s other ways we can keep track all of the work you do regarding the Dollar Babies. In fact, I think you had mentioned a Facebook group. Perhaps you talk about that? 

I run a social media page called All Things King (ATK) it’s been around for eleven years. We have a large audience of people from around the world who come there to see what I have to say about King, and I have a very fun page. It’s got information, breaking news, fun games, trivia, so forth. And whenever there’s a festival or any kind of announcement of breaking news of any kind, it goes there. You can also check out SKEMERs on Facebook, another social media page that Bev Vincent runs that also has breaking news on any kind of King festival or any news in general.

Can you give us an example of some of the trivia or what some of things you’ve been most surprised to find about since you first started getting involved with the Dollar Babies? what are some of the things since you got involved? 

Let’s see. Well, as far as the films themselves, for example, AJ Gribble, he did “Cane Rose Up.” He did a prequel called Garish. He was just a young teen when he made his film and he made it with a phone. That’s a cell phone. Looking at this movie, I’m like, are you kidding me? No way. 

Or James Cole, he was twenty years old when he made Last Rung on the Ladder in the mid-eighties; his directing partner, Daniel Thron, was 15 years old. At 15 years old I was watching MTV and listening to heavy metal music. Here’s this guy grabbing a camera and making a Stephen King movie.

Oh, Marcelo, Trigo. He’s a Brazilian filmmaker. He made his film for only $700. You watch the movie, Zomit, which is a great, great film, and you look at the special effects and everything he did and you think, he did that for $700? It blows your mind. It blows your mind how dedicated these filmmakers are. They will do whatever it takes to make their vision no matter the budget, or how they film it, or sacrificing their time with family. I know that some filmmakers have told me about bad weather conditions while filming, and equipment got wet. Just tons of stories I[ve heard. Once the movie is done, you can see the heart that went into it. That’s the reward at the end.

Hard work and no excuses seem to be the universal mandate for getting out there and making a movie. Talk about working from a shoestring budget when all you have to use is a cell phone.

I couldn’t believe that when I found that I watched the movie and thought no way. But you know what? The thing that gets me, and I have a very huge space in my heart for these filmmakers, is there’s so much wonderful talent. The creativity just blows my mind. That’s why it’s so great these festivals happen from time to time, or my book that explains about the dollar movies, because people need to know their vision is historic, in my opinion. You can see the love in each one of the films. And they’re fans. At the end of the day, they’re fans, and when you’re a Stephen King fan, you do anything, I guess.

Absolutely. I think you nailed it. I think that’s the wonderful thing about Stephen King is that he creates scary stories, sure, but he also creates a world that is so relatable that it can only attract people who want to work with Stephen King’s mind if only to try and figure out a world which truly is our world. He’s writing about us; he’s writing about our towns, and I think that’s a major draw to these films. Thanks to the accessibility King gives to these amazing filmmakers, they get to be a part of that world and get to better understand it. I think that’s a really cool thing.

It really is. Again to be in the Stephen King history books is amazing. You look at adaptations of all the films have come out, you know, what are we at now, almost sixty-five, seventy adaptations? No, more than that, I think of movies and TV shows, and there’s more coming. These  guys and ladies are part of that now and that’s just an honor among honors. 

Another thing is some of these films are different because of King’s writing. You gotta remember, they’re based on King’s early works, when he was a young lad. Some people say that was a different type of King, when he wrote in the ’70s or early ’80s compared to what he’s written over the past twenty years. For example, you read “The Boogeyman”, or “Last Rung On The Ladder,” or “A Very Tight Place” or something like that, and then you read one of his short stories now, it’s so different in storytelling. These filmmakers have to capture the way he changed over the years with his storytelling.

I always found that interesting about King, about how we can also almost follow his writing through the years based on his own environment and life events at the time. As they developed and evolved, so too did the type of stories he told. 

What do you say to anyone reading this who might have a desire to be a part of the Dollar Baby world and are wanting to use the experience to catapult their filmmaking career as a result? Maybe someone right now is thinking they’ve got a dollar under the couch cushion. Or maybe they’ve got a little summer allowance saved up and I refuse to waste their youth years the way that I did. How do they get started as far as what’s a good jumping off point and the first few steps to take?

Right off the bat, number one is you have to go to the official Stephen King website. There is a section there that talks about the Dollar Babies and the contract. You go there and it will give you all the information you need, who to contact, how to get involved. You have to get approved. You pick a story. There’s a list of stories there you can pick from, and only those. I wish there were more, but pick one and once you’re approved, once you get the story you want to do, pay that dollar, grab that camera, grab some friends, go spend a week, a weekend, whatever, and bring your vision to life. Put it on the screen where it belongs and put the Stephen King love you have into your work and you’re gonna make history. You’re gonna have a lot of fun too.

Thanks so much for all your time and your dedication to bringing so much information and awareness to the world of Stephen King Dollar Babies.

Folks can grab a copy of Stephen King – Dollar Babies: The Book published by Bear Manor Media on Amazon, at Barnes And Noble and wherever else good books are sold. Look out for Stephen King – Dollar Babies: The Sequel coming out by the end of 2023.

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