What the ‘Salem’s Lot’ Movie Will Have In Common with ‘It’

Screenwriter Gary Dauberman had the daunting task of adapting Stephen King’s 1100 page novel It to film. He had the benefit of doing it over two films. Salem’s Lot isn’t even half the length of It, so Dauberman’s movie adaptation will be one film. Salem’s Lot will share a few things in common with It: Chapter One and It: Chapter Two though.

Pennywise behind the iconic red balloon
Pennywise behind the iconic red balloon | New Line Cinema

Dauberman spoke with Showbiz Cheat Sheet about It: Chapter Two and we asked him about his upcoming Salem’s Lot adaptation too. We’ll have more with the cast and filmmakers of It: Chapter Two here at Showbiz Cheat Sheet. It: Chapter Two is in theaters September 6, 2019 and Salem’s Lot is in development as Dauberman finishes the script.

The monsters of Salem’s Lot and It both feed

Salem’s Lot is about vampires. Pennywise, from It, eats children. So both Stephen King stories are about monsters who feed.

“Yeah, you’re right, they are both feeding but the methodology is very different,” Dauberman said. “I won’t get more into that.”

Bill Skarsgard as Pennywise in It: Chapter Two
BILL SKARSGÅRD as Pennywise in New Line Cinema’s horror thriller “IT CHAPTER TWO” | Brooke Palmer/Warner Bros. Entertainment

King’s vampires are traditional vampires, so you probably know about the drinking blood, only coming out at night, etc.

“King wanted to do that in the book so he really builds off the mythology of vampires that have been set out in Bram Stoker’s Dracula,” Dauberman said. “He’s heavily influenced by that, the traditional lore of the vampire. That’s certainly something I’m doing in the draft as well.”

Both ‘Salem’s Lot’ and ‘It’ are set in a single town

It looms over Derry, Maine. Salem’s Lot takes place in Jerusalem’s Lot, or ‘Salem’s Lot for short. 

Gary Dauberman
Gary Dauberman arrives for the World Premiere of “Annabelle Comes Home” |VALERIE MACON / AFP/Getty Images

“We talked about that sense of place [in It] and that’s something I really want to bring to Salem’s Lot too,” Dauberman said. “It really is its own character and the people, the town we get to explore a little bit which is nice.”

‘Salem’s Lot’ will probably be R-rated like ‘It’

There have been PG-13 Stephen King movies like The Dark Tower and Secret Window. Salem’s Lot won’t be one of them. 

“I’m certainly embracing the brutality of it,” Dauberman said. “I don’t know if they’ve talked about R but I really don’t know why it wouldn’t be.” 

Gary Dauberman is writing ‘Salem’s Lot’ as diligently as he wrote ‘It’

Since 2017, Dauberman has written three Annabelle movies (directed one), two It movies, The Nun, the Swamp Thing TV series and now he’s at work on Salem’s Lot.

Annabelle doll.
Annabelle from ‘Annabelle Comes Home.’ | Warner Bros. Pictures via YouTube

“I’m fending off vampires every day right now which has been great,” Dauberman said. “I’m pretty far through though. I’ve almost done a draft but one draft of many, but I’m feeling very good about it. It’s really a blast to work on. I really love the story. I loved it going in but I love it even more working on it.”