Tuesday, August 4, 2015

What's going on with "Cell"?

Hello, all!
  
I'm breaking the hiatus briefly to toss up a post about something which came to mind tonight.  
  
  
  
  
Say, uh . . . does anybody remember that time John Cusack and Samuel L. Jackson starred in a movie version of Cell?  Filming has been finished for quite some time now, so wouldn't you figure that there'd be, like, a release date or something?
 
This is similar to what happened last year with both Horns and Mercy, which sat around for months waiting on somebody to actually distribute them.  Neither movie was all that good (the former is okay enough to be worth a look, whereas the latter is doo-doo), which leads me to my fear: Cell must not be too good, either.
 
Maybe I'll end up being wrong, but I doubt it.  If you've got a zombie movie with two major stars in it, you don't just sit on that sucker; you put it into theatres.
 
Unless it's crap, in which case you sit on it until you can figure out a way to minimize your loss.
 
So, my guess...?  We've got yet another crapola-fest on our hands.
 

I don't really understand why this continually happens with King adaptations.  I mean, I do get it: the movies rarely make much money, and they certainly don't make enough money to warrant anything other than a small budget.  Which begs the question: why do investors keep trying to make movies out of King's work at all?  Because they do.  It seems like barely a month goes by without news of some new King property entering development.
 
Why bother?  Look, folks, if you're not going to devote the funds necessary to do a project correctly, would you not be well-served to devote your funds to some project which will be done correctly?  It just doesn't make sense.
 
With that in mind, here is a by-no-means-comprehensive list of King projects which have been announced the past few years but which seem to be in no danger of actually ever getting made:
 
  • The Stand -- notice how, since word came out about plans to do this as a Showtime series followed by a feature-film conclusion, there's been ZERO news?  I'm sure that's a coincidence.  (I'm not; I think the project is either dead or dying.  But if it isn't, I sure do hope Matthew McConaughey is cast as Randall Flagg.  Or Stu Redman; I'd buy him as either.)  M-O-O-N, that spells "development problems."
  • Lisey's Story -- Remember when Josh Boone was going to direct this?  He has since been sidetracked by The Stand, which...well, you know.
  • The Shop -- Remember how TNT was supposedly making a television series based on the idea of The Shop?  Whatever happened to that one?  Not much.  (I think there was also talk of a series based on The Mist, but I wouldn't swear to that.)
  • C.U.J.O. -- I don't even know what to say about this except that I hope it doesn't happen.
  • The Dark Tower -- A new director was announced around the time of Comic Con.  I'll believe it when I'm watching the movie.
  • The Breathing Method -- Producer Jason Blum announced this one ages ago; there's been no word since.
  • Pet Sematary -- A remake of this has been in the works for, like, a decade.  I'd say it's actually got at least a chance of being made, someday.
  • It  -- Since the Cary Fukunaga debacle -- thanks, Warner Bros., you shortsighted, penny-pinching fools -- a new director (Andy Muschietti) has been hired.  But there's been nothing in the way of casting announcements/clarification (you might recall that Will Poulter was alleged to be playing Pennywise for Fukunaga), which is typically not a sign of a project in possession of forward momentum.
  • The Tommyknockers -- NBC announced a remake of this at the same time they announced a remake of Rosemary's Baby.  That remake has since been filmed, and aired.  What about The Tommyknockers?  Nothing.  
  • The Ten O'Clock People -- Director Tom Holland recently announced that this had been retitled Cessation, which is an awful title.  You might as well title it I'm Never Going to Make This Movie But Keep Trying.
  • The Things They Left Behind -- I swear I remember there was going to be a tv series based on this.  I think there might also been one based on The New York Times at Special Bargain Rates.  I'd Google one or both, but I'm on hiatus and can't be bothered.
  • Joyland -- The guy who directed the Help (Tate Taylor?) was announced as the director of this a year or two ago?  Where my movie at, son?
  • That Shining prequel thingy -- Glen Mazzara wrote a prequel to The Shining about the Overlook hotel.  No sign of the fuckin' thing getting filmed, which I'm okay with; I'd like for that not to happen.
  • Mr. Mercedes -- There was supposedly going to be a ten-episode adaptation of this from David E. Kelly, but there's been no movement on that, either.

I just don't get it.
 
But, at the very least, we've got 11/22/63 on Hulu to look forward to.  Here are a few on-set photos for those who might not have seen them:
 
 


  
 
Looking at that list of projects above, I would say there are only a few of them I'd particularly want to see.  So maybe this mass of non-movement is a good thing.
 
Good or bad, it's Hollywood, Jake; it's Hollywood.

45 comments:

  1. Seriously, a simple search on IMDB would show you that Cell will be released in 2016. Also it was already announced that the distributor will have a wide theatrical release in the US and the rest of the world, so the producers are taking this movie very seriously. I find it funny that you would compare it to a movie like Mercy which was a low budget movie with no stars in it. Cell is the exact opposite. It's a normal thing for a movie to take this long until it's released, has nothing to do with its quality. Just look at the highly anticipated Batman V Superman, it was filmed in 2014 and will only be released next year. Post-production can take more than a year for some movies, a very normal thing.

    As for The Stand, it was only last month that the Showtime plan was announced, you make it sound like it was last year. And Josh Boone himself confirmed that it's now in pre-production with the hope of starting filming sometime next year. What more news do you expect this soon in the production?

    Mr. Mercedes- The director Jack Bender mentioned in recent interviews that he will start preparing for the series at the end of the year, after he returns from directing 2 episodes of Game Of Thrones. So that one also seems to be on the right track.

    both IT and The Dark Tower seem to be on the way now that the new directors and writers have been confirmed.

    Sometimes it take awhile for major projects to be made, and sometimes the wait is for the best so that they could make the project as good as possible. Patience is a virtue.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I did check IMDb beforehand. And you're right, it DOES list 2016 as the release date. That's an incredibly vague release date, which means that it is no release date at all; you might as well replace "2016" with a photo of a guy shrugging.

      Check this page:

      http://www.boxofficemojo.com/schedule/

      You will see that there are films scheduled all the way through 2020. 2020!!!! Many of them don't have directors, stars, screenplays...nothing. But they've got release dates!

      With that in mind, wouldn't you think that a movie which has completed filming (and which stars people on the level of John Cusack and Samuel L. Jackson) would have a release date if there were firm plans to actually release it into theatres?

      The fact that no release date has been set means that the people who own the film don't know what to do with it. (Or, possibly, that their negotiations to do so are in flux. Let's hope it's that.) That's what an ill-defined release date almost always means. Maybe it will end up getting a wide (and worldwide) release, and maybe it won't; but the fact that there are no well-defined plans for it is a troubling sign.

      "The Stand" -- Sorry to be pedantic, but that news about the Showtime plan hit at the beginning of June, so that's two months ago, not last month. But your point stands that that's maybe a bit soon for news; and if that's the case, then it was too soon to announce ANYTHING. I'd wager that this version of "The Stand" never gets made; I suspect a lot of people are nervous about what would potentially happen to the feature film if the television component were to do poorly. But I'd love to be wrong, and I wish Josh Boone the best of luck in making this all happen.

      "Mr. Mercedes" -- Let's hope that Bender's work on this is better than this work on "Under the Dome." But yes, that does indeed sound like it's moving forward. Good news, says I! Hopefully it's a hit and we can also get "Finders Keepers" and the third novel adapted for subsequent seasons.

      "It" and "The Dark Tower" -- I'll believe 'em when I see 'em, and I expect not to see 'em. But, again, I hope I'm wrong, especially as regards "It"!

      Delete
    2. Cell will be released, but you're likely right that it's going to suck. I feel pretty certain it will be released either very early (Jan, Feb) or late, late summer when most of the blockbusters have already released.

      As for Mr. Mercedes, my understanding is that it's actually going to be a TV series, not a mini-series, and that the next two novels will be incorporated as well. Think The Equalizer as done by King. I'm sure it's going to film, but whether it's going to be picked up or not is an open question.

      It, The Stand and The Dark Tower...man, I just don't know. All supposedly have directors and are in "pre-production" but that can change in a heartbeat. I think It will probably go forward, but the finished product either won't resemble King's book at all, will be as bad or worse as the mini-series, or both.

      I really hope The Dark Tower languishes in development hell until someone realizes it needs to be a TV series, NOT a movie. Of course, it will need to air on HBO, Starz, Showtime, Cinemax or possibly--POSSIBLY--Netflix, not broadcast TV, which I fear it might end up at. An HBO adaptation would be a dream come true, especially if they handle it as well as they handled the adaptation of Game of Thrones.

      Delete
    3. I agree with you regarding the Dark Tower movie/series. Mostly. I still think a really good series of films COULD be made from it; but I sincerely doubt Hollywood's willingness or ability to do so. It'd take a miracle.

      Delete
    4. The Gunslinger would make an excellent movie. The Drawing of the Three...might. The Waste Lands feels more involved, like a TV series. There would be ZERO ways to incorporate the main plot of Wizard and Glass or The Wind Through the Keyhole (still not even sure if I'd want them to include that) in film format. The last three (chronologically) books, which I overall did not like, simply won't work as movies. I would, ideally, love to see a TV series that sorta blends the first two books together (giving us reason to care about Eddie and Susannah before Roland draws them through, and fleshing out Jack Mort as a villain), and gives us frequent flashbacks to Roland's childhood throughout all the series rather than taking a break after the mono ride to give us the story in one big dump, and then for the final seasons keep the main plot but get rid of all the stuff that just didn't work.

      Delete
    5. Oh, I think you're underselling "The Drawing of the Three." That could make a fantastic movie. It's more action-packed than any of the other novels, "Waste Lands" possibly excepted. It starts with Roland fighting the lobstrosities, rolls into some terrific character-building stuff with Eddie, then the drug-smuggling stuff, then the shootout at Balazar's, and THEN you get the insanity that is Odetta/Detta. Then, later, the scenes in which Roland commandeers Jack Mort's body are cinema-classic scenes waiting to happen.

      I also disagree with you about "Wizard and Glass." The flashback component of that is good enough that -- provided the casting was effective -- it would make a terrific movie. The only problem is, it might be too long. But I think you could condense it enough to get it into a single film.

      Delete
    6. I've really got to re-read those books. I never even have read Wind Through the Keyhole (I based my previous comment on the fact that I know it's yet another "Roland tells a story" books, so I wasn't sure it would fit in a series of movies). It's been well over a decade since I read The Drawing of the Three.

      The problem with Wizard and Glass--by the way, I'm one of its most strident defenders; I LOVE the Mejis storyline--is how do you present it theatrically? Do you do it as a prequel that's considered unattached from the main series? Do you do it as the fourth film? I think it might work the first way, but the second would be problematic.

      By the way, I think I finally found the man who needs to play Roland. After all these big "movie star" names attached to it (all of them classically handsome, except Daniel Craig, the only one I'd even be halfway okay with), I really hope this Scandinavian director hires Scandinavian actor Mikael Persbrandt.

      He's mostly known as Beorn in the Hobbit moves, but watch a move called The Salvation and tell me he doesn't look like he walked out of Stephen King's imagination. Sure, his accent is a bit thick, but I'm sure he can soften it, and to be frank, I think a slight Scandinavian accent might even work for the character. Contrary to what a lot of fans apparently think, he's not supposed to sound like he came from the Old West. He's supposed to LOOK like that, last I checked, people from the old west didn't say things like "Yon privy". Imagine Persbrandt saying "thankee-sai" or "It is ka". Yeah, he's my man, and I really hope this happens.

      Delete
    7. I only know Peresbrandt from "The Hobbit" (and its behind-the-scenes docs on the Blu-rays), but I think that's an interesting suggestion. I'm still holding out hope for Bardem; that dude would kill it.

      My thoughts on "Wizard and Glass" would be to alter the structure somewhat and have the flashbacks alternate with the ka-tet making their way from Blaine to Calla Bryn Sturgis. You could even include the starkblast from "Wind Through the Keyhole" so as to give those scenes a bit of action. I don't think it's that big a problem, to be honest. If the series was successful enough to get to a fourth film, the audience by that point would be down for just about anything.

      Delete
    8. I am very much not a fan of Bardem as Roland. Too classically handsome. Same reason I don't want Crowe or Bale. I want a leather-skinned, age-lined, weather-beaten old shoe.

      Delete
  2. Those pictures from the 11/22/63 set make me very happy.

    I'm curious what's going on with Cell, myself. It's a book I thoroughly enjoy and I've been cautiously optimistic about the movie. Still am, but, like you say, the signs aren't so good.

    So much King, so little time (or forward momentum). And that Mark Pavia one, too, if memory serves - not sure if there was ever an official word on that not getting made, it just kind of trailed off. Where King Projects Go To Die: The Series.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yep, the Pavia film was another I could/should have listed.

      Delete
  3. "With that in mind, wouldn't you think that a movie which has completed filming (and which stars people on the level of John Cusack and Samuel L. Jackson) would have a release date if there were firm plans to actually release it into theatres?"

    But there ARE firm plans to release it into theaters, a worldwide release. That information was already announced a long time ago. Also, release dates change all the time for movies. I can't tell you how many times I've seen an official release date gets pushed back/forward for certain movies. Studios are known to change their minds about such things. Perhaps this studio wants to have the release date 100% confirmed before announcing it to the public. Maybe they are thinking of releasing it in October 2016 for Halloween, and it's too early to announce it right now in August of 2015. Maybe they are going to announce it together with the trailer. There could many different reasons.

    But whatever the reason, it shouldn't say anything about the quality of the movie the way you make it sound. I mean there are people that judge movies from the trailers ahead of time. You actually judge this movie before seeing a single footage. I find it weird.

    Either way, IMDB shows a full cast and crew of the 234 people working on the movie, info that obviously came for the production company itself. So if it says that the movie will be released sometime in 2016 then I don't see why it's so hard to believe, since that information probably also came from the production company. If we get to 2017 and there's still no sign of the movie then that will start to be suspicious. Right now things are still just as planned.

    "I'd wager that this version of "The Stand" never gets made; I suspect a lot of people are nervous about what would potentially happen to the feature film if the television component were to do poorly."

    It sounds like you missed this from my previous post: It's already been confirmed that the project is in pre-production, which means the studios already decided to go ahead with the project and already started the process of casting actors, searching for set locations and so on. The fact that it's in pre-production means that they already started the process of making it, and more news will come out as they reach the actual filming.


    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You seem to have a very different definition of "firm" than the one I have.

      "I mean there are people that judge movies from the trailers ahead of time." -- You say this like it's unusual. If you spend two decades watching movie trailers, you're going to develop an ability to judge movies based on them. You won't be right a hundred percent of the time, but you'll be right more often than not; assuming, that is, you have any powers of discernment.

      "You actually judge this movie before seeing a single footage. I find it weird." -- I certainly DO have an opinion about most movies before seeing anything about it. And up until it became evident that the studio was sitting on the release, I was judging it positively. I figured there was no way Cusack and Jackson would be in it if it wasn't going to be good. This isn't judging a movie so much as it is interpreting the available information. It's based on experience, and I assure you I am correct much more often than not.

      "So if it says that the movie will be released sometime in 2016 then I don't see why it's so hard to believe, since that information probably also came from the production company. If we get to 2017 and there's still no sign of the movie then that will start to be suspicious. Right now things are still just as planned." -- That's not much of a plan.

      "It sounds like you missed this from my previous post: It's already been confirmed that the project is in pre-production, which means the studios already decided to go ahead with the project and already started the process of casting actors, searching for set locations and so on." -- First off, I didn't miss anything. Secondly, the number of films which went into pre-production only to never end up getting filmed is so long you'd have a hard time ever compiling it. "The Stand" being in pre-production is a sign that it MIGHT happen; not a sign that it will.

      We'll see in time, though, one way or the other.

      Delete
    2. I can't resist pointing out that the "firm" "worldwide" theatrical release which good old Anonymous wanted us to believe in never materialized. VOD all the way.

      Gosh, who would have guessed...?

      Delete
  4. Well, at least one of my predictions seems to be close to being false: the "Dark Tower" movie has been given a release date of January 13, 2017 (as per http://www.thewrap.com/sony-dates-two-bad-boys-sequels-dark-tower-jumanji-barbie-uncharted/).

    That's not far away at all, which means that filming will have to begin within the next few months. And THAT means that casting announcements can't be far off.

    Very exciting!

    The January release date is an eyebrow-raiser. Sony is obviously hoping this will be a franchise-starter of a movie, and most movies of that nature tend to come out during the summer season or at the holidays. However, the industry has slowly been turning into one which supports blockbusters during every time of the year, so January isn't the dumping-ground that it used to be. Look at the box-office for "American Sniper" this past January, for example.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. At the beginning of the classic samurai film "Yojimbo", the late, great Toshiro Mifune comes to a fork in the road. In order to decide which route to take, he grabs a nearby stick and tosses it into the air. Wherever it lands, that's track he'll head down.

      I see that as more or less the best approach to keeping an eye on King adaptations for the time being ("very Zen, Grasshoppah!"). Because the truth is it all is a literal crapshoot at this point. I can't say I know what the future of the King family on film will be like. One thing I do pen some minor hope on is that "11/22/63" will be a success.

      If Jacob's adaptation hits, then at least it will send a message to the industry that this kind of material has box office potential (I'm well aware of the storytelling potential as well, but studio execs will only be looking at possible revenue here). If Jacobs winds up doing a solid job for King it may put his name back on the radar.

      As for the other projects listed here:

      It: Never seen anything by Muschietti, really. I'm still willing to at least check out a film of "It" if one comes along. My one misgiving is that in the wake of Fukanaga the suits will want someone in the driver's chair that they can control from the backseat. I really dread the idea of an "It" made by "Executive Decision". I mean can you imagine what that would be like? "Ninja Turtles vs. It", coming this summer!

      While it is cringe-worthy, that "C.U.J.O." concept is just so damned hilarious that there's no way you can take it seriously the moment you here it. It almost sounds like one of those so bad its, no good, just vaguely amusing in an I-can't-believe-you-did-that kind of way.

      For my part, I'm just content to be a leaf on the wind and go with the flow so far as any post-1/22/63 King projects are concerned; always bearing in mind these immortal words from William Goldman (The Princess Bride, Misery):

      “Nobody knows anything...... Not one person in the entire motion picture field knows for a certainty what's going to work. Every time out it's a guess and, if you're lucky, an educated one.”

      ChrisC

      Delete
    2. The zen approach is certainly the wise one.

      I actually kind of agree with you about "C.U.J.O." It's SUCH a stupid idea that it gets close to some tacky sort of genius (not unlike the tv shows in this video-- https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g_87i7FhkIs). That's just a pure cash-grab, and I can sort of admire projects of that nature based purely on how much they don't care what like me think of them.

      "Ninja Turtles vs. It" might fall into the same category, but lord, I hope nothing like that happens. I'm still brokenhearted over Fukunaga leaving, but I hope for something good to happen.

      I suspect (assuming it's even halfway decent) that "11/22/63" is going to do very well. It'll be hard to tell, given the fact that it's on Hulu; but I think it'll get a lot of attention, at minimum. But honestly, I think the first season of "Under the Dome" already proved there is a big audience for King projects out there. Don't forget that the first episode of that did BIG numbers; it's dropped off considerably since, but that pilot episode proved that if you capitalize -- or appear to -- on a solid King concept, and then market it aggressively, then there are several dozen million eyeballs out there primed and ready to look your way.

      For this reason, among others, I still think "The Stand" should be a television series. And Showtime seems to be trying to go there partway. but I mean a 3-5 season series, not a 10-episode series.

      Nobody's asking me for advice, though!

      Delete
    3. Well, I can see how these shows could fit the so bad it's good label. However I think a more generous one would be extreme guilty pleasure. I mean yeah, it most likely a lot of them were probably third-rate "Knight Rider" knock offs, and I'm pretty sure some of the stars would be embarrassed if they saw their work now. Seriously, WHAT YOU THINKING LOU GOSSETT JR.!!! On the other hand, they actually made Carpenter's Starman into a series. I have to admit that's interesting.

      Plus, what can one say if you were born the year Orwell made famous, I grew up in the midst of this stuff!

      Curiously, that actor Clive Revill, I may have the wrong guy, but I think he went on to better things by voicing the character of Sherlock Holmes in a 90s series of BBC radio dramatizations of the original Conan Doyle stories.

      Also, does anyone remember a show about an inventor who creates a robot daughter (yes, this was a thing). It think it was called "Little Wonder" or something like that. Does anyone further remember a variety talk show called "That's Incredible?"

      ChrisC

      Delete
    4. You are looking for "Small Wonder," sir. Another one I never watched, although in this case I'm familiar with it.

      I have always been curious about "Starman." I was (and am) a big fan of the john Carpenter movie, so the idea of a television series intrigues me. But replacing Jeff Bridges with whoever that is (Robert Hays?) is not a way to keep me intrigued.

      I do remember "That's Incredible" being a thing.

      Clive Revill is also semi-famous as the Emperor in the original version of "The Empire Strikes Back." Poor guy, he's since been replaced by Ian McDiarmid.

      Given world enough and time, I'd happily -- gleefully, even -- watch all of those shows.

      Delete
    5. "Small Wonder" is the one you're thinking of. And absolutely. And of course on "That's Incredible" - that show has cast a long shadow! Spidey even appears on it in the newspaper strip.

      Man, that montage of cheesy yesteryear shows is just gold. I watched The Wizard, and I remember Misfits of Science being a thing. I remember the other shows but don't think I ever actually saw any.

      Delete
  5. I'm cautiously optimistic about 11/22/63, although I'd love to hear the discussion in the room that linked "everyman character" with "James Franco." (Which is not to say he'll be bad: I'm actually very intrigued by it.)

    All the casting rumors remind me that I briefly thought Under the Dome would be brilliant because Dean Norris was playing Big Jim, so it's universe 1, Zoe 0.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The universe scored a point on a LOT of us with that one. (Not that it's Norris's fault; it isn't.)

      You make a great point about Franco. His presence worries me a bit. But he is a genuinely talented actor at times, so maybe this'll be one of those times.

      Delete
  6. What would you think about a movie adaptation of Roadwork? I just read that one for the first time last month, and I know it's not considered a masterpiece, but it was one of the highlights of my July. I was near-giddy as I read the part where Dawes is driving through the blizzard to go destroy some construction equipment, all the way up through his attempt to get up the embankment and escape being found out. I was so glued to it that someone could have set my house on fire and I might have read on to the end of that section before doing anything about it. And it came to me quite clearly that a two-minute cut of that footage could be an amazing teaser trailer. I don't know who would be right for the part of Dawes, but I very clearly pictured an uncut trailer of Mark Wahlberg getting out of the station wagon and going about his business as the snow falls, lighting a match, and fading to "Roadwork," and "October 2," or what have you. I need this to happen.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I think a movie version of "Roadwork" could work really well. I reread it for the first time since the early nineties back in 2009, when the recession was in full swing and nobody knew when or if it would stop. I thought, boy HERE'S a novel that still has some relevance. But the character stuff is so good that it would work almost any time.

      You know who I'd like to see direct it? Christopher Nolan. I'd also nominate F. Gary Gray, who did great work on "Straight Outta Compton."

      I like your idea for a teaser trailer, too.

      As for Dawes...? Wahlberg would be good, but I think maybe he's a bit too action-hero; people would expect a different ending than the one they actually ended up getting. Ryan Gosling might be good. Or Aaron Paul.

      Delete
    2. I agree. I'm not stuck on Wahlberg. I think I just imagined him because of the age and the New England connection. Gosling and Paul might be a little young and too pretty. It's not like it's an iconic character, but I think its important that Dawes be solidly middle-class, down-to-earth but not a schlub. And close to the age that Dawes was in the book (I think they said 41 or 42?). Could be a great movie if they really committed to the quality and stayed faithful.

      Delete
    3. Here's an idea: Kyle Chandler would be great; he's probably a bit older than that, but he'd still be really good.

      Delete
    4. I like it. I looked it up, and Chandler will be 50 next month, but he does have the boyish good looks and could easily pass for early forties. I like your idea of Nolan too, although going by the past decade, Roadwork might not be considered ambitious by his standards. I looked at your rankings, and whenever those were made, you mentioned Frank Darabont. I would love to see that.

      And now that we've tackled that problem, what about From a Buick 8? Do you feel like that would make a good film? I read that one a year and a half ago and hardly knew anything about it going in, and I fucking loved it.

      Delete
    5. My memory of "From a Buick 8" is quite hazy, but I remember liking it a lot. Based on those dim memories, I'd say it absolutely could make a good movie. J.J. Abrams is the first name to come to mind, for some reason; not sure why.

      Glad to hear you enjoyed it! It's not one you hear mentioned too often by King fans, and I think it's probably deserving of some attention.

      On the Darabont issue...I think he's a great filmmaker, and I would happily watch him make any King-based movie. However, I suspect he's burned a few too many bridges in Hollywood with what happened on "The Walking Dead." For a guy of his stature to not be working more seems like a damn shame, and there's almost GOT to be an outside reason for it.

      Delete
    6. Have you heard any information on that? All I know is that he got booted from The Walking Dead, but then they burned through another couple of showrunners, so I don't have any reliable information on whether he's a prick or a pain in the ass.

      Delete
    7. All I've heard is the same sort of conjecture you'd hear on any movie-news site, which is that Darabont clashed with (A) executives at AMC, (B) creator and producer Robert Kirkman, or (C) both.

      I've only got interviews with him to go on, but he strikes me as being anything but a bad guy. Who can say?

      All I know is, he's talented and should be working a lot more than he is.

      Delete
  7. Good to see you back!

    John Cusack has mostly been appearing in DTV stuff for the last few years (maybe he pulled a Darabont), so if this movie is crap it wouldn't be too surprising.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Jackson has been in a fair amount of DTV stuff himself, too. I don't think a non-theatrical release is the death's-knell of quality that it once was, but it's also not exactly a vote of encouragement. I'm hoping the movie is good; I just have a tickle in the back of my brain telling me it isn't. And that tickle is right more often than not.

      Delete
  8. Samuel L. Jackson has admitted he almost never turns down a role, and is fairly open about how much he likes his paychecks. He has been in a ton of crap that most A-listers would never even consider. And you're right, when a film has been in the can that long, it's never a good sign.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I can't remember who it was who said this, but some old-school Hollywood star -- possibly Vincent Price, although I think it was someone else -- was once asked in an interview why they took so many roles in lousy movies. He (whoever he was) answered that he'd grown up poor, and looked on turning down a paying job as a sin.

      It makes sense to me, from that viewpoint.

      Delete
  9. I agree with Bryant on Cell. It's never a good sign when a movie gets pushed back so much.
    There hasn't been a single teaser or anything except those pics from 2 years ago.
    Even movies that are pushed 4 years have teasers at some point.
    Maybe there's zombie over saturation right now.I was thinking the same thing though.

    Good to see you post again. I'm horribly negative on all this adaptation stuff now. I don't believe the Dark Tower will ever be made and a 4 hour Stand remake...why? What's the point?
    Horror is hard to sell now unless it makes 300% profit or its on cable.

    I'm sure we'd all like to see a real show on cable that was well funded, well done and a faithful adaptation of half of Steve's books but that doesn't seem as though it will ever happen especially when now is the perfect time to have horror on tv. Dome and Strain are horrible shows and they are getting record numbers. There's this popular zombie show that doesn't even have to have zombies or anything mildly entertaining in it and it still destroys viewing records. So now would be the time but I'm afraid we'll get more Dome and Good Marriages before a Fargo or Game of Thrones quality TV show.

    -mikeC

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It relies at least 50% on how seriously the networks/producers/studios take King's material and commercial potential. And you'd THINK that would no longer be in question. But it is, because so often it seems that the people controlling the projects are making the projects only out of some very vague notion that it's . . . what? I don't think they know.

      Our long national nightmare with "Under the Dome" will be over in a couple of weeks, though, so there's that.

      Delete
    2. This will never happen, no way in hell. But wouldn't it be great if the King novels that haven't been adapted yet would all be given their own show, similar to American Horror Story? One adapted per season. Not only that, but bring in a different iconic horror director each season to direct the episodes. Carpenter (he would handle Roadwork or The Regulators very well), Romero (Insomnia), Hooper (From a Buick 8), Raimi (Rose Madder), De Palma (somehow I think Duma Key would be a nice fit for him, but Gerald's Game would probably work just as well), Cronenberg (Revival), etc. As I said, it ain't happening but wouldn't it be great if it did?

      Delete
    3. It is indeed a great idea. You could almost get away with calling it "Castle Rock" or something like that.

      In the event you are ever hired as a producer on such a project, let me know where to send my resume! ;)

      Delete
  10. A long time ago, I thought up the idea of a tv series called "Derry", which would feature Mike Hanlon getting into a new supernatural mystery each season. The supporting cast would rotate, but Mike would be the central character/audience surrogate whose connection to the over-force guiding events and trying to keep the monsters at bay would be used as well.

    It sorta seems like Haven has stolen my idea (I had this idea back in the late 90's), but the big difference is; this would be strongly connected to King's canon. All the Derry connections would be used, landmarks like the Standpipe, the Barrens, etc. would feature regularly, as would the concept of "other worlds than these", the Turtle and other guardians of the Beams, the Breakers, etc.

    What do you think?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'm always honest with my readers, which is why I have to admit that I don't like that idea. I think it would cheapen "It," and I'm not for things that cheapen "It."

      Having it be a different character than Hanlon might alleviate some of my concerns. I just think that you couldn't do an idea like that without including the events of "It," and that if you included the events of "It" there'd be no need to do anything beyond that.

      Speaking of which, damn, do I wish somebody would just wise up and do "It" as a series on HBO.

      Delete
    2. Eh, you were honest, and I can't fault you for that. I don't know that I'd agree that it cheapens "It", since so many of King's works are set in or around Derry, and Derry has been acknowledged as a sort of nexus of the unnatural, etc. But then, the likelihood that such a series would ever happen is slim to none. Well, none.

      And yes, HBO (or Starz, Showtime, maybe even Netflix) would be the place for it. We'd need at least six episodes, maybe more like seven. Maxi-series and "event" series are happening all over the place now, so why not take advantage of that?

      As far as I can recall, all of the King-based mini-series we've seen have aired on broadcast TV and that's just plain wrong. You can't do PG-rated King and not have it turn out...the way it's always turned out. With cable and pay-TV on the rise, there is no reason at all for King, or whoever handles his adaptation contracts, to not explore that avenue. I understand Josh Boone wants to take The Stand to Showtime, and yes, that's where it belongs.

      Delete
    3. Yeah, King isn't a great fit for broadcast networks. Although in an era where NBC's "Hannibal" can happen, things might be different.

      I agree, though; cable (or streaming) is where he belongs. I'll be curious to see how Hulu handles "11/22/63."

      Delete
  11. According to Lilja's Library:

    "Clarius Entertainment confirmed in an email earlier today that they are no longer releasing the movie version of Cell and don't know of any new distributor..."

    Huh. Whattaya know, there's a problem with the movie version of "Cell."...!

    http://www.liljas-library.com/article.php?id=4618&ref=rss&utm_source=dlvr.it&utm_medium=facebook

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yeah....it sucks ass!!!

      Delete
    2. I haven't watched it yet. I think I might do tonight; it's currently only available for digital "rental," and I despise renting movies. But hey, it's only $10.

      Sounds like it's $10 somebody failed to earn! But I'll give it to 'em anyways, 'cause hey, Stephen King.

      Delete