The 8 Stephen King Movies & TV Shows Due Out Over the Next 2 Years

If you work in Hollywood long enough you’ll probably end up attached to a Stephen King movie or TV show that never leaves development hell. That’s just, you know, the law. Why?

Because King. Never. Stops. Writing.

So, there’s is an ever-steady churn of new King books, novellas, short stories, e-books, comic books, etc. Heck, he could probably jot down an outline of a horror story on the back of a napkin and get somebody to option it. However, getting past the option stage to actually having actors on set is the consistent challenge. Back when his name had more greenlight sway in the 80s and 90s, we were treated to a new King-branded movie or TV mini-series seemingly every year, but there were more financial/creative misses than hits. Plus, what was true back then is still true now: some King stories are simply ill-suited for live action adaptation.

That doesn’t stop Hollywood from trying, though, and suddenly 2017 looks as if it will be a banner year for the old horror master. The It trailer continues to rock social media. The Dark Tower footage screened at CinemaCon last week was warmly received, and even though the film recently had its release date pushed back (by just a week) cautious optimism is still the rule of the day. J.J. Abrams’ Bad Robot people are currently toiling away behind closed doors on the mystery Hulu project Castle Rock, which aims to somehow create a Stephen King cinematic universe out of his various stories which share a geographic proximity to the fictional town of Castle Rock, Maine. And just last week King’s novella Throttle, which he co-authored with his son Joe Hill, was optioned by a producer and handed off to a screenwriter.

As such, now is a good time to stop and take stock of just how many King-related projects are in active development. DenOfGeek did just that exactly one year ago today, but over half of the projects they listed have made no noticeable progress since then. So, as per usual there are a lot of Stephen King-related scripts sitting on piles in Hollywood offices, but the following 8 projects are definitely coming to a (big or small) screen near you at some point over the next 2 years:



Plot: “King’s 131-page story telling of a man’s confession of his wife’s murder. The tale is told from the perspective of Wilfred James, the story’s unreliable narrator who admits to killing his wife, Arlette, with his son in Nebraska. But after he buries her body, he finds himself terrorized by rats and, as his life begins to unravel, becomes convinced his wife is haunting him.” – THR

Talent: Thomas Jane as Wilfred, Molly Parker as Arlette, with Dylan Schmid, Kaitlyn Bernard, Brian d’Arcy James and Neal McDonough in supporting roles. Zak Hilditch (These Final Hours) writes and directs.

Release Date: A Netflix Original Movie which currently has no set release date (or window) beyond “2017”

The Dark Tower

Plot: “The Gunslinger, Roland Deschain, roams an Old West-like landscape where “the world has moved on” in pursuit of the man in black. Also searching for the fabled Dark Tower, in the hopes that reaching it will preserve his dying world.” – IMDB

Talent: Idris Elba, Matthew McConaughey, Abbey Lee, Katheryn Winnick, Jackie Earle Haley; Nikolaj Arcel (director)

Release Date: August 4, 2017; If successful, there will be several sequels (obviously).

Children of the Corn: Runaway

Plot: “The plot of Children of the Corn: Runaway follows a young pregnant Ruth who escapes a murderous child cult in a small Midwestern town. She spends the next decade living anonymously in an attempt to spare her son the horrors that she experienced as a child. She lands in the small Oklahoma town, but something is following her. Now, she must confront this evil or lose her child.” -IMDB

Talent: Marci Miller plays Ruth; Piranha 3DD‘s John Gulager directs

Release Date: Direct-to-video sometime later this year. To be fair, at this point, Children of the Corn has nothing to do with King anymore, not that it ever really did in the first place. Runaway is the franchise’s 9th installment.

Gerald’s Game

Plot: “While trying to spice up their marriage in their remote lake house, Jessie must fight to survive when her husband dies unexpectedly, leaving her handcuffed to their bed frame.” – IMDB

Talent: Carla Gugino as Jessie, Bruce Greenwood as Gerald and Henry Thomas playing…someone, not sure who yet; Mike Flanagan (Oculus, Hush) directs

Release Date: A Netflix Original Movie which currently has no set release date (or window) beyond “2017”

It (technically, It Part 1: The Loser’s Club)

Plot: “In a small town of Derry, Maine, seven children come face to face with life problems, bullies and a monster that takes the shape of a clown called Pennywise.” – IMDB

Talent: Finn Wolfhard (the main kid from Stranger Things) and a bunch of kids you’ve probably never heard of before along with Bill Skarsgard as Pennywise; Andres Muschietti (Mama) directs

Release Date: September 8, 2017; A sequel is tentatively planned for 2018, but for now they’re waiting to see how this one does first before committing to a hard release date for Part 2: Pennywise.


Castle Rock

Plot: I dunno. Really, no one outside of Hulu and Bad Robot Productions does. According to Hulu’s press release, Castle Rock “combines the mythological scale and intimate character storytelling of King’s best-loved works, weaving an epic saga of darkness and light, played out on a few square miles of Maine woodland.” Yep. Totally clears it up.

Talent: J.J. Abrams’ name is attached as executive producer, but Sam Shaw (The Evidence, Masters of Sex, Manhattan) and Dustin Thomason (The Evidence, Lie to Me, Manhattan) will do the day-to-day heavy lifting and writing. No one else is attached yet.

Premiere Date: Hulu has ordered 10 episodes, but cameras won’t start rolling until August, at the earliest. Look for it some time next year.

Mr. Mercedes

Plot: “Tells the story of a psychopathic killer who drives his Mercedes into a crowd and a recently retired cop who tries to bring him down. ” – IMDB

Talent: Brendan Gleeson as the retired cop and Harry Treadaway as the killer. The supporting cast includes Holland Taylor (in a role Ann Margaret originally held before bowing out due to an illness in the family) and Mary-Louise Parker. David E. Kelley, fresh off the success of Big Little Lies, serves as showrunner and Jack Bender (Lost, Under the Dome) as director/executive producer. Production is currently underway in South Carolina.

Premiere Date: The 10-episode season is set to premiere on the Audience network sometime this fall.

The Mist

Plot: “The Mist is the story of a small Maine town that is engulfed in a mysterious mist, which ushers in supernatural terrors beyond the characters’ wildest imaginations. It’s a great, classicist monster story, and made a decent enough film.” -DenOfGeek

“Let’s call it a reimagination,” said executive producer Christian Torpe at the Televisions Critics Association Press Tour in January. “Internally, we talk about it as doing the Fargo approach, where the movie and the TV show is the same, but it’s different. It’s like a weird, twisted cousin to the original source material. Fans of the movie and of the book and of Mr. King’s work will certainly see elements from it. … We also, in order to develop it for TV and turn it into an ongoing series, took our own little detours here and there.”

Talent: Originally developed by Bob Weinstein and Frank Darabont as a 10-episode TV series four years ago, Torpe (best known for the Danish TV series Rita) has since taken point and secured a 10-episode commitment from SpikeTV. According to TV Guide, “The show will also follow multiple groups of people struggling to survive the Mist. Alyssa Sutherland will play a mother who gets trapped in a mall with her daughter and her daughter’s rapist; Morgan Spector will play the father of Sutherland’s daughter who is stuck in a different location from the rest of his family; Okezie Morro will play a man with amnesia struggling to find allies; and Frances Conroy will play a woman whose ideas regarding the origin of the monstrous mist will lead to great conflict within her small community of survivors.”

Premiere Date: This summer



Plot: “A 2014 novel about a preacher turned faith healer who opens up a portal to a much darker place than he could possibly imagine. Mixing the work of horror writer and mystic Arthur Machen with Mary Shelley’s FrankensteinRevival is a horrific treat among King’s more contemporary offerings.” – DenOfGeek

Talent: Josh Boone (Fault in Our Stars) has written a script, and Russell Crowe has committed to star as the preacher.

Release Date: As of December 2016, Boone planned to make Revival after completing The New Mutants for Fox. Small problem: we still don’t know when or even if New Mutants will start production. Boone is also technically still attached to The Stand, though WB let the rights lapse and revert back to CBS Films because they are no longer pursuing a Stand film or TV show or film/TV show hybrid.

Yeah, yeah, yeah…that’s all fine and good, but for me it’s Dark Tower, It, Castle Rock and everything else. What about you? Which of the above projects stoke the inner-Stephen King fan in you? Which can you just not bring yourself to care about? Let me know in the comments.

Source: DenOfGeek


  1. I actually read Gerald’s Game and I have a hard time to imagine it working in a movie. Honestly, the book was kind of a drag already.

    It is the one I am most interested in but only if they actually adapt the end fight this time around, including tortoise. I am kind of obsessed with the tortoise.

    But other than the Children of the Corn thing (there is a long running direct to video franchise? Who knew…..) those projects all have the potential to yield good results.

    1. I still have my Gerald’s Game hard copy in my closet somewhere, but I don’t think I ever got more than a quarter into it. Last I remember Gerald was dead, the door was open and a wolf (?) might be nearby. The story and tone just didn’t grab me, but I am actually very interested to see this movie for somewhat academic reasons since I want to see how they try to pull off a movie about a half-naked woman handcuffed to a bed and flash-backing to various parts of her life.

      I go back forth and between It and Dark Tower as to which film I am most interested in, but I am obviously very intrigued by Castle Rock since it’s the biggest wild card in the bunch. However, I agree that, really, they (minus Children of the Corn) all sound like they might lead to something good or at least watchable.

      1. Well, the advantage of Gerald’s Game is that it isn’t particularly supernatural and as a general rule, those adaptations are the better ones.

  2. Re: Castle Rock
    Gotta love those super vague, unhelpful J.J. Abrams plot descriptions!
    IT looks surprisingly good, I’m a fan of the novel. The Dark Tower could be good, I’ve tried once before to get into the book series, but it’s a little dense, even for King. I didn’t realize Children of the Corn was still going. And only 9 installments since 1984? They’re really slacking there.

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