The much talked about adaptation of the book is finally happening. Rumors regarding the film adaptation have been going around for the past three-and-a-half decades.
When bestsellers become movies, everyone starts to compare the two to see which one was better done, and this generates a lot of buzz. For the past three-and-a-half decades, there have been rumors regarding The Talisman, a 1984 fantasy novel being adapted into a movie. The book was written by Stephen King and Peter Straub and was a huge hit. However, there have always been dead ends to these rumors, and most times they were made just to create false hope. However, as reported by EW, Amblin Partners confirmed that the book is finally coming to the screen. The news was received earlier this week. The film is said to be directed by Mike Barker. Amblin and the Kennedy/Marshall Company are said to be producing the project.
Mike Barker is most commonly known for his directorial work on Outlander and The Handmaid's Tale. He will be taking control of the project and telling the audience the story about a young boy named Jack Sawyer. The film revolves around the boy and his quest through a massive alternate dimension to find the mystical title object that can cure his dying mother. In the process, he just might save two worlds. The production companies behind the film have been on the project for decades now. The script for the film will be adapted by Chris Sparling (who wrote the Ryan Reynolds thriller Buried).
The news regarding the book finally making its way to the screen was first revealed by Jeff Sneider of Collider. Frank Marshall will produce on behalf of Kennedy/Marshall, while former Amblin CEO Michael Wright will serve as an executive producer on the project. The journey of the book from page to screen started back when Steven Speilberg fell in love with an early copy of the book while it was still a work-in-progress. Back then, Stephen King was best known for his work The Shining and The Stand. Straub, on the other hand, was best known for his novel Ghost Story.
By far my favorite book by Stephen King. I hope this is done right— Brian Hepler (@Orangeblood503) March 12, 2019
When Speilberg read the book, he was so mesmerized that he became hell-bent on adapting it for the whole world to watch. He was so determined to adapt it that he convinced Universal Pictures to buy the rights to the book, forever. This meant that they owned all the rights, not just the right to adapt, which would have expired within a few years. "It’s something that I’ve wanted to see come to theaters for the last 35 years," he told EW last year while expressing his desire to work with King for the longest time. "I feel that in the very near future, that’s going to be our richest collaboration."
I love The Talisman. One of his most cinematic works. This should have happened a long time ago.— Robert Wolsey (@RobWolsey) March 12, 2019
The novel is 944 pages long. For a very long time Speilberg has considered directing the film version, however, he has now decided to only play a role in producing the project. About a decade ago, Amblin developed it as a six-hour TNT miniseries, adapted by The Skeleton Key screenwriter Ehren Kruger. "At that time it was just too rich for TNT’s blood," Spielberg said. "Then I pulled it back and decided to try to reconfigure it once again as a feature film." He further added that the authors King and Straub just got used to the whole start-and-stop nature of the project.
"Several times he came very close to making it, and there were a lot of discussions about that," King told EW. Finally, after so many years, Jack Sawyers adventures are finally said to be hitting the big screen. The film will be a challenge and a huge step for director Mike Barker. Although Barker is known as a veteran director for TV shows a movie of this scale is a big deal even for him. Barker's credits include shows like Fargo, Outlander, and Broadchurch. The main difference between this upcoming film and the TV shows will not just be the time he's given to convey the story and do justice to the script but also the budget.
Barker has also worked on several movies for TV like Moby Dick starring Ethan Hawk and William Hurt. On the feature side, he also directed the 1999 indie Best Laid Plans starring Reese Witherspoon and Josh Brolin, the 2004 drama A Good Woman starring Helen Hunt and Scarlett Johansson, and the 2007 kidnapping thriller Shattered starring Pierce Brosnan and Gerard Butler. However, the budget for The Talisman will exceed them all. There has been no information regarding any of the actors who will be a part of the project but it's only a matter of time now.