Ewan McGregor Hopes Stephen King Approves Of Doctor Sleep

The Shining

The sequel to Stephen King's popular novel The Shining is getting its own film adaptation and the star is hoping the follow-up will be able to do something the original never did, impress the author. Stephen King's lack of appreciation for the Stanley Kubrick directed film is so well known it became a plot point in a recent blockbuster. Ewan McGregor, who will star as the grown-up Danny Torrence in Doctor Sleep, hopes that King appreciates the cinematic sequel because it will be more faithful to his work that Kubrick's film was. According to McGregor...

I think he felt The Shining wasn't a faithful adaptation of his book. Our script is faithful to his novel. But for one thing. And I'm not going to give anything away. I'm reading Stephen King's novel every day and I'm really enjoying it.

While Stanley Kubrick's The Shining is regarded by many to be one of the greatest horror movies of all-time, one person who wasn't a fan was Stephen King. It's certainly true that Kubrick's version wasn't a faithful adaptation of the source material, focusing much more on the descent into madness of Jack Torrence, and less on Danny himself and his relationship with his father. If Doctor Sleep is going to be much more faithful to King's work, then it may not appeal to those who'd rather see a sequel to Kubrick's Shining than King's.

Of course, that's not to say that Ewan McGregor doesn't have his own feelings about Danny Torrence that might be in conflict with the author. While McGregor tells USA Today (opens in new tab) that he's reading Doctor Sleep right now, and enjoying it, he also says that he occasionally takes issue with some of King's decisions for the character in the novel.

There are points where Stephen has written a bit, and I'm going, 'Oh, that's not right. I don't think that's quite (Danny).' Like, now I'm already thinking I know the character more than Stephen King.

One wonders if that's how Stanley Kubrick felt while making The Shining.

While The Shining adaptation might not be faithful to the original text, there's little argument that it isn't a great film in its own right. Stephen King himself produced a TV miniseries version of The Shining that was much more faithful to the book, but most would agree that it's a lesser production in every other way.

Stephen King purists will be happy to know that Doctor Sleep plans to be a more faithful adaptation, but, at the same time, one hopes that the film won't be afraid to divert from the source material if there are points at which it can make a better movie by doing so.

Dirk Libbey
Content Producer/Theme Park Beat

CinemaBlend’s resident theme park junkie and amateur Disney historian. Armchair Imagineer. Epcot Stan. Future Club 33 Member.