Ben Affleck Drops ‘The Stand'; Scott Cooper in Talks to Direct the Stephen King Movie

Published 2 years ago by

stephen king stand movie director Ben Affleck Drops The Stand; Scott Cooper in Talks to Direct the Stephen King Movie

Well, the world is still reeling from last night’s shocking announcement that Ben Affleck is playing Batman in director Zack Snyder’s Man of Steel sequel. The question of whether or not the Oscar-winning actor/filmmaker could work as the Caped Crusader is certainly worth of discussion; however, today we’re going to focus more on the real-world repercussions that Affleck playing Bruce Wayne looks to have on his other professional career endeavors.

Beside getting ripped to portray a 40-something Bats, Affleck will be spending his time in the foreseeable future directing and headlining an adaptation of Gone Baby Gone author Denis Lehane’s period crime-drama novel, titled Live By Night. As a result of his busier-than-ever schedule, Affleck has been forced to abandon his gestating movie adaptation of the hefty Stephen King post-apocalyptic tale, The Stand.

This news makes sense, given that Warner Bros. – the studio developing both the aforementioned King adaptation and Snyder’s Batman/Superman movie – would prefer to have someone else get the ball rolling on The Stand in the near(er) future – whilst Affleck concentrates on preparing for his role in the evolving DC Cinematic Universe. Indeed, there hasn’t been any real progress on The Stand to report since the last update from Affleck in 2012. Even then, the actor/director was somewhat lukewarm about the project moving ahead in the near future and admitted that he was having a difficult time compressing King’s 800-1,100 pages of writing into a manageable script.

Deadline is reporting that WB has set Scott Cooper to re-write and direct The Stand; though, it’s not clear how much (if any) material the project’s new director will be carrying over from previous script drafts put together by Affleck. Moreover, there’s not at all a definite official timeline, as far as when studio heads would like Cooper to finish with scripting and get ready to begin principal photography.

out of furnace christian bale Ben Affleck Drops The Stand; Scott Cooper in Talks to Direct the Stephen King Movie

Christian Bale in ‘Out of the Furnace’

Cooper directed Jeff Bridges to an Oscar with his feature-length filmmaking debut on the alcoholic country singer drama Crazy Heart, back in 2009. He also helmed the working-class crime drama¬†Out of the Furnace starring Christian Bale and Casey Affleck; that film is expected to be an awards-season contender when it opens later this year. That’s a way of saying: Cooper has proven himself to be a quality storyteller and capable of producing visually-potent vehicles for showcasing actors at their best. Not bad credentials to have, as far as being qualified to direct The Stand goes.

Whether Cooper can make the jump from indie cinema to making a good big-budget picture of The Stand‘s magnitude – likened by Affleck to being “‘Lord of the Rings’ in America” – is another matter, since crunching King’s source material down to fit inside a single film will be a real challenge. Of course, we’re assuming that WB won’t choose to go and make an entire movie trilogy based on the single book (a la Peter Jackson’s The Hobbit) – ¬†which is a move that comes with its own set of risks (read: if the first of three planned Stand movies were a dud, then WB could be up the creek without a paddle).

How do you feel about Cooper replacing Affleck as writer/director on The Stand? Are you still holding out hope that WB may decide to split the book into 3 movies – or would you prefer a streamlined (read: single-film) take on the story?


We’ll keep you posted on The Stand as more information becomes available.

Source: Deadline

Follow Sandy Schaefer on Twitter @feynmanguy
TAGS: The stand
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  1. We don’t need a rebooted version of The Stand, honestly, we don’t. Anyone watch that when they were younger? Grim, uninspiring droll. Yeah, perfect, let’s remake that!

    Can someone become a screen writer please, they obviously lack any original ideas ever.

    • I haven’t seen the original version but if it’s that bad, I think those are the types of movies that should be rebooted. If the concept was good but its execution wasn’t, that’s the film Hollywood should be remaking IMO.

      • this is a different Phil btw

      • I’m a huge fan of the novel and I’ve seen the miniseries and honestly, I think this is a perfect example of material that SHOULD be remade. The miniseries was great for its time but it’s been almost 20 years. There is a ton of potential for a great bigscreen spectacle and I think a two- or three-part film would be amazing.

    • Who said “we”.. Maybe its you or maybe some of you.

      I said go for it. I hope that they are making a good one. A rebooted might be bad idea but hey.. look at Spiderman rebooted and it is so much better than Spiderman 3 movies. Giving it a chance and see what’s happening. :)

  2. Never saw the original mini series but yeah, remake it.

    I always saw Johnny Depp as Randall Flagg since he’s meant to be strangely attractive and captivating while also being a little off the rails at times and I can see Depp bringing that to life.

    Think Benny (from Benny & Joon) mixed with a little of his novelist character from The 9th Gate (think that was the movie). Just enough crazy to seem disturbing but not too over the top goofy like Jack Sparrow.

    • You’re thinking of “Secret Window” (oddly, another King story). His character was writer who was (as we found out later) a little “off”. His character in “Ninth Gate” was a book trader/seller.

      • Thanks Archaeon, I was thinking of Ninth Gate but got the characters confused. That’s the one with the French woman who gets intimate with him while someone burns inside a castle?

        If so, that’s the one I meant.

        Don’t think I’ve seen Secret Window. I’ve been meaning to though.

    • Only problem with Depp(for me), it seems most of his “off the rails” end up looking like Jack Sparrow now. The trick would be can he be charismatic AND sinister. I tend to see more of a Daniel Day Lewis type or even a Raphe Fiennes, although I think he gets pigeon holed into too many villain roles.

  3. Thats a relief that Affleck is not involved anymore. I thought the mini series was very good, up until the lame ending that is.

  4. Yes, reboot The Stand by all means. Perhaps since Cooper has a history with Bale, he can get Bale to play Larry Underwood, I could completely go with that casting!!!

  5. This is good news, Ben needs more time to work out to play Bats. :)

  6. amc, or fx, or even netflix, should be the way to go on this. you could get indepth in the book and turn this into a 2-3, 10-13 eps season run, a hard TV-MA, it would kill. imho.

  7. DYK. Did You Know: Jennifer Garner is the first actress to play two Greek superheroines? DYK

    • Elektra is one…WHO is the other? She’s not Wonder Woman, and Sydney Bristow (her “Alias” character) was not Greek…