A Guide to Every Upcoming Stephen King Movie and TV Show
Stephen King has a massive body of work. The iconic author has written dozens of novels, several nonfiction books, and at least 10 collections of short stories—to say nothing of his various novellas and collaborations. To date, there are over 50 movie and TV adaptations based on King’s writing, and the author has even worked on a handful of them himself. From remakes of classics to all-new mini series and reimaginings, here is a guide to every upcoming adaptation from the master of horror.
King’s first book, Carrie, has been adapted a few time over the years. Brian De Palma’s 1976 version remains the most well-received, with Sissy Spacek and Piper Laurie earning Oscar nominations for their performances. A poorly received adaptation was released in 2013, directed by Kimberly Peirce (Boys Don’t Cry) and starring Chloë Grace Moretz as the eponymous teen. The most recent attempt at a reboot was expected to land on TV rather than in theaters and seemed promising. In 2019, Collider reported that the telekinetic prom queen will be played by either a trans actress or an actress of color instead of a cis white woman, and we are all for it.
In 1983, horror movie master John Carpenter (best known for Halloween) had the honor of helming the first Christine adaptation, which has since been regarded as a timeless classic. Nearly four decades later, it is now slated to be remade, this time with Bryan Fuller in the director’s chair. Fuller is best known for his impressive TV run, which includes series like Hannibal and Pushing Daisies. He will be joined by producers Jason Blum and filmmaker Vincenzo Natali, who previously worked on another King adaptation, In the Tall Grass.
Christine is, of course, only one out of many Stephen King novels centered on a cursed object but is the pioneer behind the killer car movie genre.
From a Buick 8
Published in 2002, From A Buick 8 is King’s second story centering on a haunted car, although rather than being some sort of killing machine, the Buick in this story is actually more of a portal to a different dimension. The best-selling novel was optioned by Ashok Amritraj’s Hyde Park Entertainment, with Thomas Jane (The Mist) starring. Jim Mickle (Cold in July) is set to direct.
Unlike the previous two titles, Mile 81 is actually a novella and contrary to popular belief and initial impression, is not another killer car story. It follows 12-year-old protagonist Pete together with a small group of survivors who are stuck in a remote and boarded-up rest stop. As per Deadline, Alistair Legrand (Clinical) will be directing, while Ross M. Dinerstein, who previously worked on the Netflix adaptation of King’s 1922 will be producing.
Mr. Harrigan’s Phone
Mr. Harrigan’s Phone is a short story from King’s anthology If It Bleeds, which was released back in 2020. It’s one of King’s more contemporary shorts and centers on a young boy who befriends a reclusive billionaire. The two form a friendship over books and an iPhone. Yes, an iPhone. When the old man dies, the boy finds a way to communicate with the now-deceased billionaire through the phone that was buried with him. Sort of an odd thing to do but quite scary, if you think about it.
Veteran actor Donald Sutherland is slated to play the eccentric billionaire and if you loved the new It movies, then you’re in for a treat because Jaeden Martell is making a comeback and will play the young boy named Craig. Ryan Murphy, Jason Blum and Carla Hacken are producing and the film is set to release globally on Netflix sometime this year.
The Overlook Hotel is perhaps the most iconic haunted hotel in all of fiction, and it’s high time that it gets its very own spinoff. Featuring legendary characters from The Shining, Overlook is expected to feature the stories of the ghosts that haunt its hallowed halls. J.J. Abrams’ (Star Wars) Bad Robot Productions is expected to be leading the charge although the question of where we’ll be able to watch still remains. Recent reports have revealed that HBO Max has apparently passed on the project although it seems that Netflix is interested and rightfully so.
Pet Sematary Prequel
Pet Sematary is another beloved King story that has received several renditions through the years, with the latest one released in 2019. Both casual and hardcore fans, including King himself, often consider Pet Sematary his scariest story (I personally would like to make a case for Salem’s Lot but to each his own) so it comes as no surprise that it’s getting a prequel. Slated to stream exclusively on Paramount+, the prequel will star Jackson White (The Space Between Us) as a young Jud Crandall, who arguably has the most iconic death in King’s body of work and is essentially the character who provides all the rules and lore in the story. Fans have since been arguing if a prequel would be a good idea in the first place, considering it may poke holes in the original’s premise but if you ask me, I’m all in.
There are currently four versions of King’s second novel Salem’s Lot and that scene where little Danny Glick floats outside the window from the 1979 adaptation remains the stuff of nightmares. Although initially expected to release in September of this year, the remake is now set to come out in the spring of 2023. The Conjuring-verse’s James Wan is producing the film, which star Lewis Pullman (Bad Times at the El Royale) as the protagonist Ben Mears, a writer who returns to his hometown of Jerusalem’s Lot in hopes of writing a new book focusing on the eerie Marsten home that watches over the sleepy old town. Gary Dauberman, who worked on the latest It films as well as Anabelle Comes Home will be writing and directing the film.
The Breathing Method
Talks of a The Breathing Method adaptation have been around since 2012, and as of this writing is still tagged as “in development.” The short story is from another of King’s anthologies called Different Seasons, which also happens to be the same collection of stories where The Shawshank Redemption (in the book its full title is Rita Hayworth and the Shawshank Redemption) and Stand By Me (in the book it is simply called The Body) came from. According to the last known reports surrounding the adaptation, Scott Derrickson, the man behind Sinister, will be overseeing the film as its director. There are no new reports about The Breathing Method and whether or not its still in production, but I do hope that it is.
If you haven’t heard of this one, it’s a short but spine-tingling story. It follows an old physician who recounts a patient of his whom he teaches what he calls “The Breathing Method” in order to ease the birth of her illegitimate child. It’s a slowburn that follows their relationship for months, along with this secret society the doctor is a part of.
If you’re a Stranger Things fan, then you’ve probably already heard of this upcoming adaptation and even noticed the little hint the Duffer Brothers dropped during the Season 4, Volume 2 finale when Lucas was reading a copy of the novel to Max. After announcing their very own production company called Upside Down Pictures, the brothers share that they intend on creating stories that inspired them growing up. One of these is King’s 1984 collaboration with Peter Straub. The Talisman is one of King’s longer reads (it has over 700 pages) and follows a man named Jack Sawyer, who is in search of a—you guess it—talisman to save his mother’s life. In the story, Jack flips in between realities and parallel words, something I think we all know the Duffers know a thing or two about.
First published in 1996, The Regulators was written by King under his pseudonym, Richard Bachman. The novel takes place in Wentworth, Ohio in a quiet and suburban street that is terrorized one day when four vans containing “regulators” come and terrorize its residents. The brains behind the scheme is a young boy with autism who is possessed by an evil entity. The Regulators is best known for being a “twin” novel to King’s other famous novel, Desperation. It features several other characters who also make an appearance in Desperation like John Marinville, Peter and Mary Jackson, Steve, Cynthia, Tom Billingsley, and Collie Entragian. Both of the novels’ main antagonists feature the evil entity previously mentioned, called Tak, who begins his rampage after being trapped underground for centuries. Classic King.
We have yet to learn details about casting and target release dates, although we do know that the adaptation is being led by Bohemia Group’s Executive Vice-President, producer Justin Ross.
Bohemia Group’s very own CEO, Susan Ferris, shared in an exclusive interview with Deadline, “We could not be more thrilled than to be working with the prolific Stephen King and his team on this project,” said Bohemia Group’s CEO, Susan Ferris. “The novel’s themes and characters resonate so powerfully, and we are looking forward to making an incredible film.”
King himself has expressed his joy in the same interview, saying, “I’m delighted that the excitement of ‘The Regulators’ is coming to the screen. This is going to be good.”
We can’t wait to see it.
The Boogeyman is one of King’s many short stories that has been adapted quite a few times over the years. The story was first published in Cavalier before it was later compiled and made part of King’s anthology, Night Shift which also contained several more of his famous tales like Jerusalem’s Lot (better known, of course, as Salem’s Lot) and Children of the Corn. It was adapted as a movie in 1982 by Jeff C. Schiro before being made into a theatrical play by actor David Oakes. The story was also made into a 27-minute short film back in 2010 and is now set to hit theaters on June 2, 2023. The all-new and latest adaptation will star Sophie Thatcher (Yellowjackets), Chris Messina (Birds of Prey), Vivien Lyra Blair (Obi-Wan Kenobi), Marin Ireland (The Dark and The Wicked), Madison Hu (Voyagers), LisaGay Hamilton (The Practice), and David Dastmalchian (Dune).
In the story follows a man named Lester Billings who is now in therapy and talks about the mysterious deaths of his children. He describes their passings as not just “deaths” but rather, murders. He narrates his life for the past couple of years and tells the psychiatrist how his first two children were found dead in their bedrooms after each screaming, “Boogeyman!” Billings swears to seeing both their closet doors ajar upon finding their bodies but is positive that the doors were closed before the children went to bed a few hours prior.
The first trailer, so far, appears to have made a few deviations from King’s main text but it appears promising, nonetheless. Its scoring is the perfect amount of eerie that I just know will leave me constantly looking over my shoulder when I can finally watch it.
Children of the Corn Reboot
Children of the Corn is essential Stephen King and is perhaps one of his stories with the most number of adaptations, with one even spawning a multi-sequel franchise. This much-awaited reboot is set to release on March 3rd. Its official synopsis reads as follows: Children of the Corn follows a 12-year-old girl in Nebraska who is possessed by a spirit in a dying cornfield. She recruits the other children in her small town to go on a bloody rampage and kill all the adults and anyone else who opposes her. A bright high schooler who won’t go along with the plan is the town’s only hope of survival.
The remake stars Elena Kampouris (Before I Fall), Kate Moyer (Station Eleven), Callan Mulvey (The Gray Man), and Bruce Spence (The Road Warrior) and is produced by Lucas Foster (Morbius), Doug Barry (FML), and John Baldecchi (Point Break).
What Stephen King stories would you like to have adapted? Let us know in the comments below!
(featured image: KENZO TRIBOUILLARD/AFP via Getty Images)
Have a tip we should know? [email protected]