Mike Flanagan is very much a popping name right now when it comes to the horror world, having just released his critically acclaimed adaptation of Stephen King's "unfilmable" Gerald's Game via Netflix in the fall. Last year he was also responsible for writing, directing, and editing Hush, Before I Wake, and the surprisingly worthwhile prequel Ouija: Origin of Evil. With his new Netflix series The Haunting of Hill House on the way soon, it's clear he's on a roll.
Flanagan likely has his pick of a number of promising projects right now, but speaking with Lilja's Library, he revealed what his dream adaptations would entail. Given how he successfully managed to translate Gerald's Game to film, he was asked what Stephen King work he'd like to tackle next.
"There are so many," he explained. "But the ones I'd want to do the most are Doctor Sleep and Lisey's Story. In both cases, it's because I identify with the protagonists so much. Lisey's Story is a stunning piece of work, a beautiful exploration of marriage. And who wouldn't want to venture back into the world of Danny Torrance?"
Josh Boone (The Fault in Our Stars, a future remake of The Stand) currently has Lisey's Story. But Doctor Sleep, the 2013 sequel novel to 1977's The Shining, which was famously adapted by Stanley Kubrick in 1980, doesn't have anyone in the director's chair yet. Unfortunately for Flanagan, and pretty much everyone interested in seeing Doctor Sleep adapted, Akiva Goldsman was tapped to write a Doctor Sleep adaptation back in 2016. Most recently, Goldsman was responsible for writing the widely panned King adaptation The Dark Tower, and other famous stinkers like Batman & Robin, Rings, and Winter's Tale, his 2014 directing debut. However, with Flanagan's profile as both a writer and director on the rise, he could potentially save the project from failing to meet expectations.
It should be noted that Doctor Sleep is a sequel to the original novel, and any such adaptation of the film could act as such, ignoring the changes Kubrick made that King notably disapproved of. Either way, a Shining sequel carries a lot of weight whether it carries on from the book or the film, as Kubrick's adaptation often regarded as one of the best horror movies of all-time. Goldsman isn't the man for the job, but Flanagan could definitely give it a good shot going by his increasingly impressive track record.