The release date for Paramount's upcoming remake/readaptation of Stephen King's Pet Sematary has moved up on the calendar ever so slightly. While there was a time when the man didn't receive nearly the respect he was due from the literary community at large, nowadays, Stephen King tends to be rightly regarded as one of the greatest authors working today. He's also one of the most prolific, often pumping out new novels and short stories faster than even dedicated fans can keep up with them.
King is also one of the most adapted authors in history, and might well be the most, if one ignores authors of works in the public domain such as Shakespeare, Charles Dickens, and Edgar Allan Poe. Of course, just because King's work gets adapted a lot, doesn't mean the results are always good. In fact, many would argue that the film and TV adaptation of King's stories are awful a lot more than they're good, even when excluding loosely tied films like the thousand Children of the Corn sequels.
When it comes to theatrical adaptations of King's work though, one film frequently cited as being in the upper echelon is 1989's Pet Sematary. Directed by Mary Lambert, Pet Sematary tells the tale of Louis Creed (Dale Midkiff), a family man who learns of the existence of an old Native American burial ground with the power to resurrect the dead from his neighbor Jud Crandall (Fred Gwynne). This place is used to resurrect the Creeds' deceased cat, but things go south fast after their son Gage gets killed by a truck. Paramount had originally set Pet Sematary's remake for an April 19, 2019 release, but now, Box Office reports that it's been moved up slightly, to April 5.
As adaptations of Stephen King books go, Pet Sematary (1989) is actually one of the closest ones out there, and there's a simple reason for that: King wrote the screenplay himself. This time out, the script is being penned by Jeff Buhler, who wrote the 2008 Clive Barker adaptation The Midnight Meat Train, as well as upcoming remakes/reboots of Jacob's Ladder and The Grudge. Buhler has said that he hopes to create “the scariest Stephen King adaptation ever.” Helping that cause will be directing duo Dennis Widmyer and Kevin Kolsch, helmers of 2014's well-received indy horror flick Starry Eyes.
With King seemingly not directly involved in the creative process of this new take on what the author personally considers one of his best books, one wonders how much Buhler, Widmyer, and Kolsch will opt to deviate from the source material. That said, King has shown himself to be receptive to changes to his work, as seen with his enthusiastic endorsement of Andy Muschietti's IT. Casting is certainly going well so far, with Jason Clarke (Dawn of the Planet of the Apes) and John Lithgow (literally dozens of great roles, seriously check out his filmography) signed on to play Louis and Jud, respectively.
Source: Box Office
- Pet Sematary (2019) release date: Apr 05, 2019