When Will ‘The Stand’ Premiere? Everything We Know So Far About the New Stephen King Adaptation

The past few months have been good ones for Stephen King fans. In October, Paramount Pictures released a trailer for the new adaptation of Pet Sematary. (The movie hits theaters in April 2019.) In December, HBO announced it would adapt one of the horror novelist’s latest books, The Outsider,into a limited series. A new novella, Elevation, hit bookstores in October and in January, he announced another new book, The Institute, would be published in fall 2019.

Now comes the news that King’s epic, post-apocalyptic novel The Stand will also get a TV adaptation. The book will be turned into a 10-episode limited series that will air on the streaming service CBS All Access.

This isn’t the first time The Stand has been adapted for television

The adaptation of the 1978 bestseller is exciting news for King fans, but it’s not the first time the book has been given the Hollywood treatment. After attempts to create a movie version stalled, the book was turned into a TV miniseries in 1994. King wrote the screenplay for the four-episode series, which starred Jamey Sheridan as villain Randall Flagg. Molly Ringwald, Gary Sinise, Laura San Giacomo, Ruby Dee, and Ossie Davis also appeared.

The Stand follows a group of survivors of a pandemic that’s killed off almost all of the world’s population. The survivors, under the leadership of 108-year-old Mother Abigail, must face off against the sinister Flagg, who has supernatural powers. The new adaptation will be directed by Josh Boone from a screenplay written by Boone and Ben Cavell.

The director has long felt a connection to King’s work

Boone, who directed The Fault in Our Stars and the upcoming X-Men spin-off The New Mutants, first encountered King’s work as a child. When his Baptist parents discovered their 12-year-old son reading The Stand, they burned the book. That’s when Boone got creative.

“Incensed, I stole my Dad’s FedEx account number and mailed King a letter professing my love for his work,” he recounted. “Several weeks later, I came home to find a box had arrived from Maine, and inside were several books, each inscribed with a beautiful note from god himself, who encouraged me in my writing and thanked me for being a fan. My parents, genuinely moved by King’s kindness and generosity, lifted the ban on his books that very day.”

In a tweet, King said he was “really happy” that Boone was involved with the project, “along with a boatload of other talented people.”

We don’t know who will be in it or when it will air

CBS hasn’t made any announcements about casting for the show. At one point, Matthew McConaughey was expected to play Flagg in a film adaption of The Stand directed by Boone. The actor played the Man in Black in the 2017 adaption of King’s The Dark Tower. That character is Flagg in another guise, so it might make sense to have McConaughey revisit the role in the TV adaptation.  

The network also hasn’t revealed a release date for the new series. However, Entertainment Weekly speculates that the show could air sometime in 2020.

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