Stephen King continues to be a favorite well for film and television to draw from, and now we’re going to see his sequel to The Shining finally make to the big screen. Doctor Sleep is coming from Warner Bros. and Ewan McGregor is set to play the adult Danny Torrance. Given that this is Warner Bros. and they were behind Stanley Kubrick’s classic film, you’d have to assume that this is to be considered a sequel to that film. There was also a prequel in the works called Overlook Hotel that fell through, but Variety points out that the success of IT made King’s work a hot property.
If you’re unfamiliar with Doctor Sleep, don’t expect the same type of movie as The Shining according to Variety:
“Doctor Sleep” begins as Torrance carries the trauma of the Overlook Hotel into adulthood. He’s become a reflection of his murderous father, with lingering rage and a drinking problem that dulls his pain as well as his “shining” powers. Those powers return when he embraces sobriety and uses his gift to help the dying at a hospice. He establishes a psychic connection with a young girl who shares his extreme abilities, and who is being targeted by a group with similar abilities. They’ve found that their powers grow if they inhale the “steam” that comes off others with the power to shine, when they are suffering painful deaths.
If this ends up being a direct adaptation of King’s book, there is no doubt it will be very odd in comparison to Kubrick’s film — famously a thorn in the author’s side. We suspect it’ll likely be somewhere in between, with a return to the hotel that was still standing in the film. There is no way they can’t dip back into the iconic imagery a bit unless this turns into a sequel to the TV mini-series. Warner does have that too and who can turn down a Steven Weber cameo. We’ll have to wait a bit to see since the film won’t be released until January 2020.