There’s one story in the modern literary canon that Guillermo del Toro would kill to make. What is this story that would drive him to such dark means of desperation? None other than Stephen King’s Pet Sematary.
On his official Twitter feed, del Toro has been flooding his account with beautiful selections of gothic art, films that he feels have been unfairly overlooked by audiences, and a veritable reading list of short stories and books the Crimson Peak director believes you should be reading. Among those book picks was the following Twitter confession:
As most movie fans would know, there’s already been a feature length adaptation of Pet Sematary. Released in 1989, the Mary Lambert directed film was adapted for the screen by Stephen King himself, and scared the hell out of audiences so much that a sequel was released three years later. While Lambert was along for the ride, King wasn’t – and it showed, as the film was widely panned. Interestingly enough, plans for a remake have already been in the works for quite a few years now. So what exactly would we gain with another director vying to throw his hat in the ring?
On one hand, it’s easy to say that Pet Sematary should just stay dead. The original film is a mid-level classic, and if King himself could nail it the first time around, why mess with a good thing? However, considering that Guillermo del Toro has it in his mind to hypothetically remake this film, and Stephen King did sign off on Crimson Peak as "gorgeous and just fucking terrifying," it would be a shame if the two didn’t at least have a meeting about the possibility at this point. Come to think of it, this exactly the process that any sort of modern remake should spring from. Especially when watching the trailer to the 1989 classic, shown below, still has us wondering if this is the best idea.
Most remakes come from a point of marketability and profit minded filmmaking, and audiences know it. But when you’ve got a filmmaker like del Toro who’s passionate about a story, like he is with Pet Sematary, you’ve got a chance to retell the story in a loving, enriched manner. Guillermo del Toro clearly loves the book enough that he’s familiar with the text, which means that any flourishes or changes he decides to utilize would be, at least in his eyes, beneficial to the story he loves so much. With Stephen King to guide him, a system of check and balance would be in place that would make sure that even his particular eye would be pleased with the end result. All you’d need is Ron Perlman as Jud Crandall, and Doug Jones as a cat – and the whole production would be in business.
Coming back to the here and now, you can see Crimson Peak in theaters today, and you can pester both Guillermo del Toro and Stephen King on Twitter – in hopes that this dark dream project can become a reality.