Time for another Stephen King news update, don’t you think? Recently we saw the publication of King’s latest novel, Fairy Tale, and I have news about the next adaptation, which launches this week. In addition to those items, I’m going to talk about two associational projects, one of which involves yours truly and the other that involves someone from New Brunswick in Canada—and it’s not me! Continue Reading
Traditionally, in stories modeled after the Hero’s Journey, the main character receives a call to action, which he or she initially resists. Take, for example, Bilbo Baggins, who is cajoled out of his comfortable, quiet life to go on an adventure by Gandalf. In Stephen King’s fantasy stories, the characters are self-motivated. No one has to urge Jack Sawyer to light out for the Territories—he has a good reason to embark on a perilous journey. Similarly, Roland Deschain chooses his mission to find and save the Dark Tower, even though it will take him on a wild journey for the rest of his natural days. No one conscripts him. (Although, to be fair, sometimes his characters are yanked into a quest without being given any choice in the matter.)
In Fairy Tale, Charlie McGee Reade also decides for himself to go on a magical adventure although, when he sets out, he has no idea what dangers he will face and what will be asked of him while he attempts to achieve his goal.
The first time Billy Summers killed a man, he was barely twelve. By the time he’s eighteen, he’s a sniper with the Marines in Iraq, where he notches up another two dozen kills. Instead of re-upping, he tries to find work back in the States. One of his former Marine friends asks him to kill someone. Thus begins Billy’s career as an elite hitman. His only condition is that his victims have to be demonstrably bad men. He’s not a sociopath driven to kill — he’s just good with a gun. He can hit targets from an incredible distance and then vanish like Houdini without being identified or caught. Now, at the ripe old age of 44, he’s looking to retire. One last job and he’s done.Continue Reading
What was your gateway to Stephen King? The Shining? It? Pet Sematary? These are a few of the more common examples, but being that King has written approximately fifty thousand books, it’s not that unlikely to get into the author through some of his less-famous (though, really still quite-famous) works.
For author Gemma Amor, it wasn’t The Losers’ Club’s adventures that sparked her love for King, nor was it Jack Torrance’s escapades at the Overlook Hotel. It was a gnarly, rabid St. Bernard named Cujo. In fact, the 1981 book had such an impact on Amor that it inspired her to pursue character-driven horror and short stories. Continue Reading
In 2018, Castle Rock, the town Stephen King introduced in The Dead Zone and returned to numerous times in subsequent works, isn’t on the map any more. A few years ago, the town voted to disincorporate itself. The historic downtown is mostly home to boarded-up businesses. Nan’s Luncheonette burned under mysterious circumstances a while back. The nearest Wal-Mart is some sixty miles distant. The town’s main employer is Shawshank Prison, twenty miles away. A considerable percentage of the people behind bars in that establishment are from Castle Rock.Continue Reading
There’s a lot to like in Mike Flanagan’s adaptation of Gerald’s Game, a book long thought to be unfilmable since so much of it consists of internal dialog, with the main character handcuffed to a bed for much of it.Continue Reading
Considered to be one of his darkest works, Stephen King’s Cujo is not for the cowardly. It is relentless in its forward motion, coming at you “like a brick heaved through a window,” as King himself once described.
According to a new press release, the upcoming (November 7) 240-page hardcover edition of Gunslinger Born will “present fans with exciting bonus material. Leading the way is a series of all-new illustrations from Lee. Additional added-value features will be unveiled in the coming weeks.”
“They’re all gonna laugh at you.” A year after Jaws made audiences afraid to go in the water, Carrie raised similar fears about the high school prom. Schedule permitting, director Brian De Palma will participate in a post-screening discussion about the film when it hits the big screen at the Academy Theater at Lighthouse International in Manhattan (111 E 59th between Park & Lexington Ave) on October 15 as part of the Monday Nights with Oscar series. Tickets are $5 for the general public and $3 for Academy members and students with a valid ID, and may be reserved by calling 1-888-778-7575. Doors open at 7 p.m. All seating is unreserved. Featuring a new print from the Academy film archive.
King will be making two appearances in October to promote the Best American Short Stories (2007) which he edited. He will be at Symphony Space in New York on October 10th and in Cambridge, MA on October 16th. His introduction from the anthology was published on Sunday in the NY Times Book Review.
Happy Friday the 13th! Someone posted a couple of deleted scenes from Shawshank Redemption on YouTube. They’re interesting, but their ultimate destination, the cutting room floor, was the best place for them, in my opinion.
On July 27th at San Diego Comic-Con, Frank Darabont will be showing clips from The Mist and holding a panel with stars Thomas Jane and Laurie Holden, along with special effects gurus Greg Nicotero (KNB) and Everett Burell (CafeFX). Other cast members may be along for the panel. Darabont is having 3000 teaser posters printed up for the event to hand out at the show.
Lilja reports that Duma Key will be approximately 592 pages long and that King will narrate the audio edition.
King’s most recent Entertainment Weekly column is about the end of the Harry Potter series: Goodbye, Harry
Here’s a review of the new special collector’s edition DVD of Cujo. A new DVD boxed set this month contains Carrie, The Dark Half, Misery and Needful Things. Three TV adaptations will be released in another boxed set on September 25, including The Stand, Golden Years and The Langoliers.