All of the early signs for the feature film adaptation of the ‘The Stand‘ seemed to be extremely disappointing as it sounded like this masterpiece was again going to be cut down to a single movie which I suggested that you not go see. Now I’m happy to share with you that it is going to be split into four films! I don’t care if director Josh Boone (‘The Fault in Our Stars’) just liked Peter Jackson’s idea for ‘The Hobbit’ and wanted to top it or if he came to his senses when you factor in that the “The Complete & Uncut Edition” of ‘The Stand’ weighs in at a whopping 1168 pages or 464,218 words! T0 put that in perspective, the 10th longest book to be published is ‘Infinite Jest: A Novel’ by David Foster Wallace at 479,198 words. This is a LONG book and four movies seems like a much better number to truly do this novel justice.
In a recent interview on Kevin Smith’s Hollywood Babble-On podcast, Boone actually gave a ton of details about the film:
“[The early drafts] were not so much where I thought they should be going with it. [They were] much more like a big summer blockbuster. When I thought about The Stand, it’s so much about the vast network of characters, and all their problems. It’s kind of a morality play set in post-apocalyptic America. The battle between good and evil is the battle for these peoples’ souls. They make choices which dictate the fate of humanity.”
He starts off from there how he sold the studio first on a single three hour film (which does contain a spoiler if you are unfamiliar with the novel or mini-series that were already released):
“I really wanted to do an A-list actor, really grounded, credible version of the movie. I sold them on that and they hired me…I sold them on a single, three hour movie. I went and got [Stephen] King sold on it, everybody’s really excited…I told the story non-linear and that was the way I was able to compress that book and get everything into that script. You open with Mother Abigail dying and sending the guys off, and then you jump back in time… So what happened is the script gets finished, I write it in like five months, everybody loves it, King loves it, $87 million is what it was budgeted at, really expensive for a horror drama that doesn’t have set pieces.”
While things were moving along the studio, WB, who has been against a multi-film project since the beginning seemed to have finally changed their minds with how well other multi-film big budget blockbusters have been received in recent years:
“They came back and said “would you do it as multiple films?” and I said “f*ck yes!” I loved my script, and I was willing to drop it in an instant because you’re able to do an even truer version that way. So I think we are going to do like four movies. I can’t tell you anything about how we’re going to do them, or what’s going to be in which movie. I’ll just say we are going to do four movies, and we’re going to do ‘The Stand’ at the highest level you can do it at, with a cast that’s going to blow people’s minds. We’ve already been talking to lots of people, and have people on board in certain roles that people don’t know about. We’re looking to go into production next year, maybe in the spring.”
So it sounds like some initial casting has been done, more is in the works, and we’re getting not one, not two, not even three, but four feature length films to flesh out the story of ‘The Stand.’ For the first time in as long as I can remember I am truly excited to see the film come to the big screen. This is the length that it should be and we should be in for one Hell of an epic adventure!
What are your thoughts on a multi-film version of ‘The Stand’? Do you finally feel like we’re going to be getting something that does the novel justice? Share your thoughts below!
You can listen to the podcast in it’s entirety below!
Source: Slash Film