It's a very exciting time to be a horror fan. With most stale franchises temporarily on hold, the genre has been full of challenging and exciting work. Audiences have also seemed to become more horror friendly, with films like Get Out making a ton of money at the box office and even accruing a handful of Academy Award nominations. We've also seen a handful of Stephen King novels be adapted into film recently, and now it looks like another one is heading our way in the form of Doctor Sleep. The sequel to The Shining is being made into a film, and Doctor Sleep has just found its director.
Director and editor Mike Flanagan will be directing Doctor Sleep, which is sure to excite many of the hardcore Stephen King fans out there. Flanagan recently received acclaim for helming Gerald's Game on Netflix, based off the Stephen King novel of the same name. He's clearly a fan of King's stories, and therefore seems like a great choice to tackle the narrative challenges of The Shining sequel.
News of Mike Flanagan's new gig come to us from Deadline, and should really excite all of the Netflix subscribers who tuned into Gerald's Game. Flanagan delivered a harrowing and fascinating ride through one woman's psyche, leaving audiences simultaneously exhausted and satisfied by its conclusion. Part of his success comes from the way he adapted Stephen King's novel of the same name. Not every aspect of the source material was included, especially when it comes to the voices in Jessie's head. Instead of multiple characters, she had just two voices: Gerald and the other version of herself. This choice helped to streamline the story, and made Gerald's Game such a fun ride.
Indeed, he's likely going to have to do some similar narrative trimming with Doctor Sleep. The story follows an adult version of little Danny, who survived his horrifying encounters in the Overlook Hotel. But narratively, it's almost nothing like its predecessor. Mike Flanagan will have to navigate through a supernatural story involving a handful of psychics and a group of quasi-immortals called The True Knot. Casual fans are likely going into the movie expecting another scary ghost story, so he'll have to manage fan expectations while bringing Doctor Sleep to the silver screen.
It should be interesting to see if Jack Nicholson is approached to reprise his role as Jack Torrance. Toward the end of the Doctor Sleep novel, Danny return to the Overlook Hotel site and makes peace with the ghost of his father. It's a moment that could be really powerful for the Doctor Sleep film, although getting Nicholson involved in a glorified cameo may be an uphill battle. We'll just have to wait and see.
You can catch Gerald's Game streaming on Netflix, as well as the horror movie Hush, which Mike Flanagan edited. In the meantime, check out our 2018 release list to plan your trips to the movies this year.