Former 'Walking Dead' Showrunner to Script 'The Shining' Prequel
by Ethan Anderton
April 11, 2013
Despite the fact that Stephen King's novel sequel to The Shining, titled Doctor Sleep, will hit shelves this September, last summer we learned that Warner Bros. was exploring the possibility of a prequel film to the classic Stanley Kubrick horror flick. Now there's been some progress on the development as Deadline reports former "The Walking Dead" showrunner Glen Mazzara is currently in talks to write the film currently titled The Overlook Hotel. Honestly, it seems like a bit cheap in the wake of the pseudo Psycho prequel series "Bates Motel" (though the series is set in present day), but we're not sure of the story just yet.
When news surfaced of the project, Laeta Kalogridis (Shutter Island) had been tapped to produce, along with her partners Bradley Fischer and James Vanderbilt, and the film would focus on the events that happen before Jack Torrance (Jack Nicholson) arrive at the Overlook Hotel. My big question is do they have the rights to any source material from Stephen King to help guide this story, or is it all being created from scratch? EW has a quote from King saying:
"There’s a real question about whether or not they have the rights to ‘Before the Play,’ which was the prologue cut from the book — because the epilogue to the book was called ‘After the Play.’ So they were bookends, and there was really scary stuff in that prologue that wouldn’t make a bad movie. Am I eager to see that happen? No I am not. And there’s some real question about what rights Warner Bros. does still have. The Shining is such an old book now that the copyright comes back to me. Arguably, the film rights lapse — so we’ll see. We’re looking into that. I’m not saying I would put a stop to the project, because I’m sort of a nice guy. When I was a kid, my mother said, ‘Stephen if you were a girl, you’d always be pregnant.’ I have a tendency to let people develop things. I’m always curious to see what will happen. But you know what? I would be just as happy if it didn’t happen."
One would think that King might be consulting on the project, but it's hard to say since the author wasn't a big fan of what King did with his book on the big screen. Plus, that quote seems to indicate that he's not involved in any capacity since he doesn't have the copyright, or at least is figuring out those details as Warner Bros. moves forward on the project. It does seem to be treading dangerous territory for horror and Kubrick fans alike as The Shining is one of the most revered horror films ever made. Thoughts?