Stephen King: News from the Dead Zone #213

Stephen King News From the Dead Zone

Sometimes it’s hard to stay on top of everything that’s going on in the Stephen King Universe. There are so many projects underway or about to get underway or that could possibly some day get underway that it boggles the mind. This is a new Golden Age for King, especially when it comes to the various adaptations of his work to screens large and small, silver and otherwise. I’m here to help you keep track!

April may be the cruelest month, but August is one of the slowest, both in the publishing world and for movies and other adaptations. But that’s fixin’ to change, as we say in Texas.

Coming up in September:

  • It Chapter Two hits movie theaters on September 6. Here is the first trailer. When King read the first draft of the sequel, made a few notes, and requested the addition of ‘one all-new scene,’ director Andy Muschietti listened. A featurette was released recently, too.
  • The Institute, King’s next novel, will be published on September 10. I’ve already read the book and I look forward to sharing my thoughts about it with you in a few weeks, closer to publication date. Publishers Weekly says, “Not a word is wasted in this meticulously crafted novel, which once again proves why King is the king of horror. ” Kirkus says King “plays on current themes of conspiracy theory, child abuse, the occult, and Deep State malevolence while getting in digs at the current occupant of the White House, to say nothing of shadowy evil masterminds.” Booklist adds that young Luke and his fellow “special” captives along with King’s commanding tale-telling will attract paranormal-loving YAs who like a sustained read. Santino Fontana will narrate the audiobook edition.
  • Mr. Mercedes returns for its third season on September 10 on Audience Network, this time adapting Finders Keepers. New cast members include Bruce Dern, Rarmian Newton, Glynn Turman, Kate Mulgrew, Natalie Paul, Meg Steedle, Brett Gelman and Gabriel Ebert as Morris Bellamy. The Season 2 DVD comes out on August 13. [Teaser 1]and [Teaser 2].
  • The new anthology series Creepshow will premiere on Shudder on September 26. One of the stories being adapted is “Gray Matter,” starring Creepshow (movie) alum Adrienne Barbeau. Twelve stories have been adapted for the six-episode first season, including tales by Joe Hill, Josh Malerman, Joe Lansdale and David J. Schow. [Trailer]

And later in 2019:

  • In the Tall Grass, based on a story co-written with Joe Hill, will launch on Netflix on October 4, 2019. The story will appear in Hill’s forthcoming collection Full Throttle. The movie will premiere at Fantastic Fest in Austin at the end of September.
  • Doctor Sleep hits big screens on November 8. The first “teaser trailer” came out a while back, addressing the big question about how director Mike Flanagan was going to handle the differences between the Kubrick version of the story and King’s. “It is an adaptation of the novel Doctor Sleep, which is Stephen King’s sequel to his novel, The Shining. But this also exists very much in the same cinematic universe that Kubrick established in his adaptation of The Shining,” Flanagan said. Read more here. Danny Lloyd, who played Danny Torrance in the Kubrick film, gave his reaction to the trailer: “I was surprised… It looked really good. I was curious, since there is a fine line they have to walk with Stephen King and Stanley Kubrick. It looks like they found a way to pay tribute to both.”
Recent publications
  • A new trade paperback and eBook edition of Cycle of the Werewolf (August 13)
  • Trade paperback editions of Flight or Fright came out from Scribner and from Hodder & Stoughton in June. A variety of translated editions have also appeared in recent months.
Other adaptations:
  • The CBS All Access miniseries adaptation of The Stand is in full swing. Tentative cast members include James Marsden (Stu Redman), Amber Heard (Nadine), Whoopi Goldberg (Mother Abagail), Greg Kinnear (Glen Bateman), Odessa Young (Frannie Goldsmith), and Henry Zaga (Nick Andros). Also supposedly Marilyn Manson. Adding to the buzz for this miniseries is the recent announcement that King has written the final episode of the nine-episode series, providing “a new coda that won’t be found in the book,” a story that addresses what happened to the survivors. King tweeted: “The script for that final episode is written. I was glad Josh Boone gave me the chance, because that final story has been in my mind for 30 years.” Filming will reportedly begin in September.
  • Pablo Larrain (Jackie) will direct the miniseries Lisey’s Story, with Julianne Moore set to star. King wrote all eight episodes himself for the forthcoming Apple TV+ streaming service.
  • The launch date for Season 2 of Castle Rock on Hulu has not yet been announced.  A feud between warring clans comes to a boil when budding psychopath Annie Wilkes  gets waylaid in Castle Rock. Cast members added since the last update include Robin Weigert, Alison Wright, Sarah Gadon and Greg Grunberg.
  • The adaptation of Wizard and Glass has been filming in Split, Croatia, although it’s not yet clear if Amazon has green-lit more than the pilot. In the past, Amazon has polled the public to see how popular certain pilots are before committing to series. Not sure if that will happen here or not. Stay tuned!
  • The Outsider  will debut on HBO sometime in 2020.
  • James Wan is producing a feature film adaptation of ‘Salem’s Lot, scripted by Gary Dauberman (It, The Nun, Annabelle: Creation), who said, “We felt it should have the cinematic treatment that we gave It. “
  • Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark director André Øvredal is set to direct New Line’s feature adaptation of The Long Walk. James Vanderbilt wrote the screenplay and is also producing with Bradley Fischer and William Sherak.
  • Hulu is developing a pilot based on The Eyes of the Dragon. Seth Grahame-Smith (Lego Batman Movie) is writing the opening episode and serving as the showrunner. Grahame-Smith told Deadline, “The goal for this series is to feel unlike any Stephen King adaptation before, with this rich underlying source material, and the only true fantasy book he wrote that has kings and swords and princesses. We will honor the spirit of the book and the legacy.”
  • During a radio interview with Andy and Bárbara Muschietti (director and producer of It), both announced they’ll be producing an adaptation of Roadwork, which will be directed by Argentinean director Pablo Trapero.
  • King’s next novel to feature Holly Gibney is called If It Bleeds. Publication date not yet announced.
  • King reviewed Laura Lippman’s novel Lady in the Lake for the NY Times.
  • IDW Publishing  will adapt Sleeping Beauties as a 10-part comic book epic by Canadian novelist Rio Youers (The Forgotten Girl) and London-based artist and architect Alison Sampson (Winnebago Graveyard).
  • Mick Garris interviewed King for his Post Mortem podcast to celebrate the 25th anniversary of their collaboration on The Stand miniseries. You can listen in here. The Blu-ray edition of the original miniseries will be released on September 24.
  • I have  a Historical Context essay called “A Nasty, Dark Piece of Work” in the Deluxe Special Edition of Revival from LetterPress Publications.
  • King has written an introduction for Richard Chizmar’s novel Gwendy’s Magic Feather.

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