Jamie Foxx has built an incredible legacy as an actor and performer. As a multi-talented creator, he’s racked up countless accolades with a wide variety of performances. He never shies away from bold career choices and, now, he’s got a new idea that could shake the table even more -- retooling a Stephen King classic for a Black lead.
At this point, there are very few film genres that Jamie Foxx hasn’t dabbled in. He’s equally comfortable in indie dramas, kid-friendly musicals, police thrillers and superhero blockbusters. However, he hasn’t really starred in a tried-and-true horror film--though it sounds like that could change soon. In an interview with Men’s Health magazine, the Oscar-winning actor revealed what drives him to continue to create:
Jamie Foxx said that he was inspired to reframe the horror master’s terrifying tale of an obsessed fan kidnapping her favorite author by his own encounter during a charity auction. He spent the evening with a couple and was initially swept up by their praise for him. But eventually, “it got weird.”
The star didn’t elaborate much more on just how that experience would inform his retelling of Stephen King’s Misery-- but it’s definitely intriguing to imagine how a story like that might unfold. Misery was published in 1987 and tells the story of romance novelist Paul Sheldon, who is seemingly saved from the wreckage of a car accident by Annie Wilkes, a nurse who just happens to be his “biggest fan.” But when he realizes he’s being held captive by her, he must act quickly to stay alive.
Misery is no stranger to adaptations. It was made into a hit film from Rob Reiner in 1990, and Kathy Bates won an Oscar for her portrayal of Annie Wilkes. King’s story was loosely adapted for the 2003 Tamil film Julie Ganapthy, and Annie Wilkes showed up in the Hulu anthology series Castle Rock. The story has also been adapted for the stage. Since we’re in the midst of a bit of a Stephen King-assaince these days when it comes to film and TV adaptations, this may be the perfect time to dust off one of his most memorable classics.
The focus on celebrities and public figures has only gotten more intense with the rise of digital communication, so a story like Misery may be overdue for an adaptation. And someone like Jamie Foxx, who is so attuned to multiple facets of culture and has been in the spotlight for years, may be the perfect person to understand how to reshape the story for the 21st century.
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