Horror maestro Stephen King’s work has been adapted to the screen a lot. With 40 film and TV series already based on his works, King officially holds the record for the living author with the most adaptations. And that’s a record he’s not likely to give up anytime soon as more than a dozen more adaptations have already been announced to be in development. However, one of them is now no longer happening.
Mid last year we heard that another horror maestro, director Mike Flanagan, was supposed to be bringing King’s 2014 novel Revival to the big screen. Flanagan had cut his teeth with modern horrors like Hush and Oculus, but it was his work adapting King’s Gerald’s Game that really put him on the map. His incredible Netflix series adaptation of The Haunting of Hill House would then lead him to the biggest project of his career with blockbuster adaptation of Doctor Sleep, King’s sequel to the classic The Shining. Revival was to continue Flanagan’s King run but the filmmaker took to Twitter recently to announce that the production has been scrapped.
Responding to a question regarding any similarities between Revival and Midnight Mass, another, unrelated horror movie that Flanagan is developing for Netflix, Flanagan simply revealed that Revival “won’t be moving forward unfortunately”. No other details about Revival’s cancellation have been revealed, but I would hazard a guess that due to COVID-19 disrupting everybody’s schedules, Flanagan could only work on one of the two and chose to go with Midnight Mass (which he describes in the same Twitter thread as “my favorite thing I’ve ever gotten to work on.”)
Revival’s particularly dark story – even by King standards – is set over five decades and follows small-town preacher Charles Jacobs whose disturbing obsessions following the tragic accidental death of his wife and child leads him to a twisted bond with Jamie Morton, a heroin-addicted rock musician who was once a boy in Jacob’s parish. The novel received strong reviews upon its release in 2014 and was optioned for film adaptation not long thereafter with filmmaker Josh Boone (The Fault In Our Stars, The New Mutants) attached. While Boone was busy adapting King’s The Stand as a TV series (which debuted last month), he penned a script for Revival. At one point, he also announced that Russell Crowe had joined to star as Charles Jacobs.
However, that adaptation seemingly fell apart when it was announced last May that Flanagan was now penning a new script and would probably direct, with no word of Crowe’s involvement any more. And now that iteration is also dead. Looks like this production is going to need another… revival.
Last Updated: January 7, 2021