Firestarter’s Director Names The Stephen King Adaptation That He Would Like To Tackle Next, And It's An Exciting Choice

Of the many directors who have taken the helm of a Stephen King movie over the years, a surprising number of them haven’t been able to settle with making just one. Not counting television productions, seven different filmmakers have made at least two King films – the list including George A. Romero, Lewis Teague, Rob Reiner, Mick Garris, Frank Darabont, Andy Muschietti, and Mike Flanagan. That’s one hell of a group, and if he were given the chance, Firestarter’ Keith Thomas would definitely be game to join up.

I interviewed Thomas late last month during the virtual press day for Firestarter, and in addition to talking about John Carpenter’s score and changes from the source material, I also asked about his prospective future making Stephen King adaptations. As captured in the video above, I put to the director the challenge to pick another King movie to make – and while he briefly considered one of many of the author’s brilliant short stories, he ultimately selected the 1983 book Cycle Of The Werewolf. Said Thomas,

Putting aside kind of, what's already been made, I love Stephen King short stories. There's a ton that I love. For whatever reason I love Cycle Of The Werewolf. I would love to see a... it wouldn't be a remake. It'd be a new adaptation of that.

When Keith Thomas says that his movie wouldn’t be a remake, that’s because Cycle Of The Werewolf has already been adapted. In 1985, director Dan Attias made the movie Silver Bullet, which was based on a screenplay that Stephen King wrote himself. The film stars Corey Haim as werewolf hunting hero Marty Coslaw, and Gary Busey is the biggest name in the supporting cast – playing Marty’s alcoholic-but-supportive uncle.

The catch that comes with Silver Bullet is that it’s not a super faithful to the source material. Cycle Of The Werewolf was originally supposed to be a calendar full of short stories, and Stephen King got a bit carried away – instead writing a book with 12 chapters corresponding to the months of the year (every month has a full moon, and each chapter describes a new werewolf attack). Silver Bullet doesn’t reflect that structure and invents a lot of material.

What particularly draws Keith Thomas to the material is not just Stephen King’s story about a small Maine town plagued by a lycanthrope, but also the artwork that was designed for Cycle Of The Werewolf. King reteamed with Creepshow illustrator Bernie Wrightson to do some savage and brilliant drawings for the book, and Thomas wants to bring Wrightson’s art to the big screen:

That Bernie Wrightson imagery is just so burned into my brain. That's what I want. I want to see that.

We’ll just have to wait to see what the future holds.

First things first, Firestarter is set to hit theaters this Friday, and it will also be available to stream on Peacock. Written by screenwriter Scott Teems, the movie has a brilliant cast including Zac Efron, Sydney Lemmon, Gloria Reuben, Michael Greyeyes, Kurtwood Smith, and Ryan Kiera Armstrong. Stay tuned here on CinemaBlend for more from my interviews with the cast and filmmakers, and learn all about the other Stephen King adaptations check out our Upcoming Stephen King Movies and TV guide.

Eric Eisenberg
Assistant Managing Editor

NJ native who calls LA home and lives in a Dreamatorium. A decade-plus CinemaBlend veteran who is endlessly enthusiastic about the career he’s dreamt of since seventh grade.