As we’ve discussed in detail before, Stephen King adaptations can be very hit-or-miss, with the majority of them being more miss than hit. For every Carrie or Misery there is a Dreamcatcher or an Under the Dome. That being said, it’s hard not to get to excited when a new film or television adaptation of one of King’s works is announced. Not all of them come to fruition, or they spend years in development hell, but when production actually starts on an adaptations it is certainly capable of getting your adrenaline pumping! The five adaptations on this list are some of the Stephen King adaptations that we are looking forward to the most.
After a failed attempt at adapting It with True Detective director Cary Fukunaga at the helm, Mama director Andy Muschietti was brought on as a new director. The summer of 2016 was filled with productions updates as the child actors were cast, the time period was revealed (the 80s!), and Pennywise’s new look was unveiled. Seeing as how filming wrapped in September, everything seems to have gone according to plan. It is scheduled to be released on September 8, 2017, and audiences will finally get the (hopefully) R-rated It adaptation that the 1990 ABC mini-series wasn’t able to deliver. Expectations are higher than ever for this one!
Gerald’s Game was considered un-filmable for the longest time. It is, after all, about a woman named Jessie who accidentally kills her husband mid-coitus while she is handcuffed to the bed. The rest of the novel is set entirely in the bedroom as Jessie struggles to escape her new prison. Lucky for us, Mike Flanagan is attempting to film the un-filmable and Netflix may finance and distribute it! Flanagan’s involvement with the project was announced over two years ago, but he got sidetracked with Ouija: Origin of Evil. Now it looks like things are moving forward, which is a good thing for fans of King’s underrated novel.
The Dark Tower
The Dark Tower has had a long road to make it to the big screen and for good reason. Spanning eight novels and more than 4,000 pages, the series is home to King’s densest mythology. After several false starts, production on the film finally began back in March, with director Nikolaj Arcel at the helm. A release date has been set for February 17, 2017, which is an interesting time to release the epic. February is known for being a genre film dumping ground, but after Deadpool’s success from the same weekend last year it’s understandable that Sony is feeling confident with that date. The film may divide fans, as it is being touted as a new take on the series rather than a direct adaptation of the novels.
The story behind the television adaptation of the first installment in Stephen King’s Detective Bill Hodges trilogy is a bittersweet one. The late Anton Yelchin was cast as the mentally deranged ice cream truck driver Brady Hartsfield just 26 days before his untimely death. Understandably, the project has hit a road block (Brendan Gleeson was also cast as Brady’s nemesis Detective Bill Hodges). While a 2018 release on AT&T’s Audience Network could still be in the cards, it may be a while before we see Mr. Mercedes brought to our television screens. Still, there are three books (and three seasons’ worth) of material to use for a series, and it would be nice to see t his project move forward.
NOS4A2 by Joe Hill
I’m sneaking this one in here since it’s not really a Stephen King adaptation (though I will anticipate the comments that call me out for even including it on this list), but at least I’m keeping it in the family! King’s son Joe Hill has written some amazing novels, and one of his best is on its way to becoming a television series on AMC. While I’m still bummed we haven’t gotten an adaptation of Heart-Shaped Box yet, NOS4A2 is a perfect literary property to turn into a series. There is a ton of mythology to mine from its pages. The title refers to the license plate of the villain’s 1938 Rolls Royce Wraith (an abbreviation of “nosferatu”). That villain happens to be Charlie Manx, a grotesque figure with long sharp teeth who kidnaps children and brings them to Christmasland and sucks the life out of them, turning them into vampires. It’s a truly remarkable piece of fiction that only a network like AMC will be able to do justice.
Which adaptation are you looking forward to the most? We all know that The Mist is being adapted as a television series for Spike TV, and there are supposedly film adaptations of Pet Sematary and Doctor Sleep in the works. Let us know your picks in the comments below!