Frank Darabont and Stephen King Reteam for Long Walk

Directing three Stephen King movies (four, if you count an early short film) wasn't enough for Frank Darabont. Perhaps cinema's biggest fan of the horror author, the Mist writer/director has plans for another Stephen King movie. This one, written under King's pseudonym Richard Bachman, is the sci-fi tale The Long Walk.

The story tells of a futuristic foot race where competitors are shot when they stop walking. The last man walking wins. A movie constantly on the go is the next hurdle Darabont faces.

"Certainly you can't get too handheld with it because then you'd have an image bouncing for the length of a feature film," said Darabont. "I think there's got to be some stabilizing gizmos that I can use to get some of that coverage but I'm already thinking about that."

Darabont distinguished between his styles for The Mist and his previous films. Where he spent time carefully planning on The Shawshank Redemption and The Green Mile, he took a fast and furious approach to The Mist. That style would also be appropriate for The Long Walk.

"That would also be, I think, probably the more ragged and loose and documentary kind of feel. It would probably be an even lower budget than this one was."

With Fahrenheit 451 set to be Darabont's next project, The Long Walk could still be a long way off. "That right now is still in the future. That's on one of the back burners for now. It probably won't be too long but before I do that, I'm hoping to get Fahrenheit 451 rolling next year."

Comments

ProducerPaul

Paul Barrett

Ah, The Long Walk. I remember practicing my screenwriting by adapting that story into a screenplay. I actually had an original copy of that book, before anyone knew Richard Bachman was Stephen King, but I loaned it to my mother and she lost it (sigh)

It's a tough one to adapt, since there's very little action and it's mostly teenagers talking and waxing philisophical. Hopefully they won't screw it up like they did The Running Man.

Nov 30 - 06:43 AM

frogleg

Josh Quarles

I bet they don't. I think Darabont understands King better than anyone else adapting his stuff. The Long Walk is definitely the best of the Bachman books, and it's up there pretty high in King's library, IMO. I think this is pretty exciting news.

Nov 30 - 06:52 AM

rustdog

Rusty Baldwin

I like Bachman more than King, if that makes any sense? The problem with the Long Walk is there's little back story before the contest. I imagine to make a feature length movie some extra character development will need to be added.

451 has been in the works with so many directors. At one point Mel Gibson owned the rights. I'll believe it when I see it.

Nov 30 - 07:33 AM

frothy

D F

I'm skeptical in the sense that the book seems to be a tough one to film, but I'm encouraged by the fact that it's Frank Darabont, who's shown some affinity for adapting King's books. Imagine if they got Tony Scott or Michael Bay to direct instead!

I imagine that rather than there being 90 minutes of young men walking, we'll have plenty of flashbacks - like how Garity got chosen, for example, or any of the other constestants' backstories.

Nov 30 - 08:00 AM

ProducerPaul

Paul Barrett

They'll have to change the ending a bit, too, since, in typical King fashion, it's sort of ambivalent as to what happens (at least to me it was.) It will be kind of interesting to see how close it is to my adaptation (probably not very. Mine was pretty literal.)

Nov 30 - 08:24 AM

ctall33

Chris Tall

I thought I watched that movie in the 80's? It was called "The Running Man" with Arnold Schwarzenegger.

Nov 30 - 08:46 AM

ColdBloodedBMC

Brien Mckelvey

I don't recall any walking in the Running Man, mostly RUNNING!!!

Nov 30 - 04:27 PM

opTIMus Nerd

Tim Ahlberg

The Long Walk was, IMO, the best of the Bachman Books and could be a cool flick. I doubt we will see the Running Man syndrome here with Darabont directing. This could be really awesome!

Nov 30 - 08:48 AM

bangoskank

Matt Krets

ctall33: Nope, "The Running Man" is based on King's story "The Running Man." See how that works?

Nov 30 - 09:22 AM

dracus

Cap Nord

One of my favourite King books. Looking forward to audience's reaction to seeing the fat little kid getting knocked off for not keeping up with the others.

Nov 30 - 09:38 AM

DIABLUSX

TOMMY WILBANKS

Wow. This is movie can go so horribly wrong so very quick if it is not done right. I am just hoping it doesn't sprial downward into some horrible teen movie with added in action sequences to draw movie viewers.

Nov 30 - 09:42 AM

DiscoDan

Justin Tate

The Mist was incredible I'm sure this one will be too!! Can't wait!!!

Nov 30 - 10:39 AM

primetime21335

Homer Simpson

I too thought the book was fantastic. I am skeptical about how this could be done well cinematically considering the entire book is more about internal challenges than just walking. Such a good book. It's a shame people write it off and don't read it just because it's about a long walk. It's soooo much more than a walk. How are they going to convey that properly on the big screen?
King is awesome.

Nov 30 - 11:11 AM

ProducerPaul

Paul Barrett

I want to be the first to nominate Tom Felton (Draco Malfoy) to play Stebbins. He has the look and is good at playing an evil jerk.

Nov 30 - 11:31 AM

BrianInSD

Brian Gaul

Speaking of The Running Man, it would be cool to see someone actually adapt that book for the screen. The only thing it had in common with the Schwarzenegger movie was the title. Of King adaptations, I think only The Lawnmower Man has deviated more wildly from the source material.

However, it would probably be hard to get greenlit without changing the ending of the book, which, if I remember correctly, ivolved the hero hijacking a plane and flying it into a building.

Nov 30 - 12:03 PM

ProducerPaul

Paul Barrett

You are in fact correct.

Nov 30 - 01:29 PM

ProducerPaul

Paul Barrett

You are in fact correct.

Nov 30 - 01:29 PM

Aqueryan Reloaded

Andrew Bosma

This is joyous news - the fact that it is Mr. Darabont who will be helming the adaptation. Considering that the man is batting .1000 in terms of adapting King's works to the screen I kind of find it insulting that anyone would choose to express skepticism about whether The Long Walk can be successfully translated into a feature film. Darabont more than deserves to receive the benefit of the doubt from people regarding his ability to do justice to such a challenging and cherished story. I am fully confident that Darabont has the balls and the clout to render the long walk in all its unsettling, uncompromising glory. I cannot WAIT to see this on the screen.

*sigh* Now if only Darabont can wrest away the rights to The Dark Tower saga from JJ Abrams. Hey I can dream, can't I?

Nov 30 - 03:25 PM

epiphanymia

Sophia Smith

JJ Abrams does action well, but I'm cringing to imagine the treatment that my beloved Dark Tower series will get. I am glad, however that it has been optioned, and hope they find a way to work The Little Sisters of Eluria into the series somehow.

Jun 1 - 07:01 AM

volid

Dobromir Penchev

Seems like I'm the only one who didn't like the book ...

Nov 30 - 04:24 PM

ColdBloodedBMC

Brien Mckelvey

I don't recall any walking in the Running Man, mostly RUNNING!!!

Nov 30 - 04:27 PM

walkingdead09

Justin Dean

Ashron, when do your movies come out?

Nov 30 - 08:10 PM

ProducerPaul

Paul Barrett

Walkingdead, one of them is already out. It's called Night Feeders and it's available on Netflix and at many Blockbusters. If you decide to watch it, don't be too harsh on us. Our budget was less than the cost of a nice SUV. The other one is making the rounds to distributors now, so we have no time frame for it.

And I agree with you Aqueryan, if anyone can do Long Walk justice, it will be Darabont, but you have to admit that it's a tough one to adapt.

And just a fun little note for those of you who saw The Mist, the grocery store manager in the movie is a friend of mine and has been in several industrial videos I've produced. He's a really nice guy.

Dec 1 - 10:26 AM

High School With Money

LEEEROOOOOAAAAHHHH MMMYYAAAANKEEEUUUNNNNSSSS

to Darabont: steadicam it all the way - that'll impress me. Also, you're wrong about Truffaut's [i]451[/i].

to King: if you give up the movie rights to your stories for a dollar each, should you really be complaining when they barely fit your vision? Also, you can quit giving Mick Garris a career.

Nov 30 - 11:05 PM

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