Warner Bros. has now released Doctor Sleep into theaters, but what could Doctor Sleep 2 look like and when could we see it? Released in 2013, Doctor Sleep was Stephen King's continuation of the story that began in The Shining, which was brought to the big screen by Stanley Kubrick in 1980. Although there are many differences between The Shining book and movie, the new Doctor Sleep movie works as a solid adaptation of the source material and sequel to the original film.
Doctor Sleep largely focuses on a grown-up Danny Torrance (Ewan McGregor) who has managed to largely overcome his childhood trauma from his family's stay in the Overlook Hotel. Even though Danny has locked away most of these memories, his abilities lead to a friendship with a young girl with greater power named Abra Stone (Kyleigh Curran). Once her incredible gifts are discovered, Rose the Hat (Rebecca Ferguson) and The True Knot hunt her down to feed on her power. This leads Danny back to the Overlook Hotel for a showdown with Rose to protect Abra.
This story is mostly wrapped up by the time Doctor Sleep comes to a close, but the possibility for more stories in this world do exist. So far, the film has been generally well-reviewed by critics and has a 75% rating on Rotten Tomatoes. Importantly, Stephen King is one of its biggest fans based on his remarks. With King a fan of the adaptation and the film possibly set to be a winner for Warner Bros., here's what we know about what Doctor Sleep 2 could look like.
Will Doctor Sleep 2 Happen?
At this point, Warner Bros. has yet to announce plans for Doctor Sleep 2. The possibility of this happening will depend on the box office performance of the new film. It is expected to open between $20-$30 million domestically, so the horror/thriller will need to connect with audiences beyond this weekend to generate sequel discussions. The positive reviews for Doctor Sleep and legacy of The Shining should help its cause, but it will still be up to the studio to figure out if the film does enough to warrant more entries in the franchise.
What Will Doctor Sleep 2's Story Be About?
If Warner Bros. is interested in Doctor Sleep 2 though, they will have to look beyond the source material to find a story. King has not written a follow-up novel to Doctor Sleep and it is unknown if they would need his permission to continue this story. If the business side of a sequel is worked out, the story itself would most likely be focused on Abra, while Danny could return in a limited capacity too. There would also be the opportunity for another film in this franchise to further expand the world, introducing more powered individuals.
When Could Doctor Sleep 2 Be Released?
Should Doctor Sleep 2 happen, it will be a few years before it could hit theaters. The first film took roughly two years to get through all phases of development from the point when director Mike Flanagan was brought aboard. If he were to return to the director's chair and write the script, a similar timeline for Doctor Sleep 2 would be possible. In such an instance, a late 2021 release date is the best-case scenario, while a 2022 or 2023 release may be more to give the story plenty of time to be developed.
- Doctor Sleep (2019) release date: Nov 08, 2019