A Prequel To The Shining May Be On Its Way
Every now and then you stumble across a prequel, sequel, reboot or remake that turns out fairly well. This year we've seen a handful of them, like the totally unnecessary but fantastic 21 Jump Street movie, or The Amazing Spider-Man, or hey, The Dark Knight Rises. But for every spin on an old story that works, there are dozens and dozens that don't-- and even more that get tossed around at a studio somewhere without ever getting made. So I want you to keep that in mind with processing the news at The Los Angeles Times that Warner Bros. is "quietly exploring" a potential prequel to The Shining.
Take a deep breath. Try not to drive your Big Wheel off a cliff, and try to ignore the voice in your head screaming about Redrum. No one at WB would even confirm the project's existence on the record, and the best news is they've involved Laeta Kalogridis, the screenwriter behind Shutter Island and a lot of uncredited work on Avatar. Kalogridis would be involved only as a producer, along with Bradley Fischer and James Vanderbilt, and it's unclear what their take would be, though the tone of Shutter Island might be a strong clue.
It's also hard to know what they mean by "prequel," since in The Shining the Torrance family was relatively happy and well-adjusted before they arrived at the Overlook. Would the film be set at the Overlook and about other creepy events that went down there in the past? Would they get Stephen King involved to craft the story? King famously disliked Stanley Kubrick's adaptation of his novel, and Kubrick's film wasn't particularly faithful to the book, The 1997 TV movie adaptation of the book was much more faithful and also pretty good-- could this be another attempt to bring a truer version of King's story to the screen?
Even with King's involvement, this film would be hard for a lot of movie fans to swallow, and I imagine WB wants to develop it carefully before announcing it officially and setting every Internet comment section on fire. But if you want to get your ire out, go ahead and do it now-- but try to keep an open mind, because you truly don't know how worthwhile the final product might be.
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