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(Huffington Post)   Ben Affleck admits he's having a hard time turning Stephen King's "The Stand" into a movie. M-O-O-N, that spells Obvious   (huffingtonpost.com ) divider line
    More: Obvious, Ben Affleck, Stephen King, Dennis Lehane, Whitey Bulger, Gigli, Matt Damon, adaptations, Rob Lowe  
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3115 clicks; posted to Entertainment » on 16 Nov 2012 at 9:26 PM (3 years ago)   |   Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



Voting Results (Smartest)
View Voting Results: Smartest and Funniest

2012-11-16 11:29:23 PM  
4 votes:
I don't understand the Hollywood producer mentality that keeps them going after King's books. "Let's take an incredibly long book with about 19 subplots and try to distill it down to a 110-minute movie! Yeah! That'll totally work!" They have two options: Take out all the subplots, which means they're telling a pretty standard post-apocalypse story (The Stand is not remarkably different from any other end-of-the-world novel) OR try to shoehorn in every single subplot in under two hours and thereby reduce them all to caricatures (here's the deaf guy, here's the retard, here's the Lord Humungous...I mean, here's the Devil).

Give it up. The Stand cannot be a movie. It cannot be a miniseries on basic cable. You MIGHT pull it off on HBO or Showtime if you had the budget. But it won't ever be a film. Not even a Peter Jackson-style LOTR epic release. Sorry.
2012-11-16 10:10:16 PM  
3 votes:
The Stand would have been better with zombies.


Best advice for Ben is to flip to the center of the book, tear it in half and throw away the part with the back cover.
2012-11-16 09:45:19 PM  
3 votes:
Do Swan Song instead, Ben. It's a better book and would make a better movie.
2012-11-17 01:53:22 AM  
2 votes:

Dwight_Yeast: See, I like the long build-up to the inevitable decimation of humanity; I've always liked the early parts of King's books as he's so good at shaping characters who seem not just human but like average people you know.


That's always been King's gift--to bring ordinary people into extraordinary circumstances. That being said, I read a lot of King's stuff in his 80s heyday and was always like "that's entertaining, but not memorable." I managed to avoid The Stand until shortly before the miniseries came out and the unabridged version was re-released as a tie-in (you could tell because it had Gary Sinise and Molly Ringwald on the cover). Just for the hell of it I picked it up ... and I was up until six in the morning devouring it. The miniseries was okay but in the right hands and with the current trend of getting two or three movies out of one book it could work.
2012-11-17 01:44:00 AM  
2 votes:

hubiestubert: The Stand suffered the same problem. It just looked cheap and tawdry, and that was the style of the time, but it can be done better. Look at HBO's Rome.


Rome had FAR better actors, IMHO. That's far more important than special effects. ( Not that sets & special effects aren't important)

/ just rewatched "I, Claudius"; BBC production from the '70's...
// minimal sets and special effects
///....and it completely blows away most modern TV shows IMHO, because of the script & outstanding acting
2012-11-17 01:21:28 AM  
2 votes:

Mikey1969: Angry Buddha: I read my first King book when I was twelve. It was Firestarter. I've since read everything he's written and I'm a fan without a doubt. He definitely had a spell of not-so-great novels, but he seems to have hit his stride again starting with Duma Key.

I started at 14, I think, but that's only because my a-hole adoptive mother tried everything she could to keep me from reading for pleasure. She really was a biatch, I think it was mostly because she didn't like to see me happy.

Anywho, I walked into the school library, told the librarian that I wanted to try something new, and finally settled on horror. She turned me on to The Talisman so that I could decide between King and Straub. I never even tried to read anything else by Straub, except when Black House came out.


My Dad handed me The Stand, after I started raiding his bookshelf. He gave me Starship Troopers, he handed me LOTR and The Hobbit. I'm looking forward to handing my little girl a ton of books, because that is how we roll in this family...
2012-11-17 12:54:39 AM  
2 votes:

NeoCortex42: antidisestablishmentarianism: Also, besides those wonderful boobies the only way you can improve on the TV mini-series is with an R rated film and modern special effects. The ABC mini-series was a very good interpretation of the book.

It was a pretty good adaptation of it. I still think it could be done amazingly well if it was made into an HBO mini-series. I don't have high hopes for a feature length movie, though. Or even a pair of movies.

Ditto with It. As perfect as Tim Curry was, the rest of the cast and production looks incredibly dated and lacking.


That's the problem with King's stuff. He builds a rather detailed story, and although people biatch and moan about having to read "too many words", in the end, there isn't a lot that you feel that you can throw away. What you end up with is something that is too long to be a film, but has to be TV friendly, so the real intense shiat is watered down.

HBO would be nice. I was really hoping for the movie, HBO series, movie idea they were floating for The Dark Tower, it would be the only way to do it. Good news is; it doesn't HAVE to be HBO anymore. The cable-only networks have FINALLY figured out that the FCC was only given jurisdiction over the broadcast stations, not them, so that's why you see T&A and pretty much everything but F-Bombs on shows like Sons of Anarchy. We could now get an updated It(Tim Curry could STILL totally pull off Pennywise), even The Stand done like a feature film, but airing on regular cable.
2012-11-17 12:18:42 AM  
2 votes:
I read my first King book when I was twelve. It was Firestarter. I've since read everything he's written and I'm a fan without a doubt. He definitely had a spell of not-so-great novels, but he seems to have hit his stride again starting with Duma Key.

I'd probably buy Ikea furniture assembly instructions if he penned them.

What's my point? I forget. Tito vodak is really good. You should all try it. It's better than most of the higher-end vodaks.

I had awesome makeup sex today. My dog won't stop licking her ass. Those two statements are TOTALLY unrelated.
2012-11-16 11:32:04 PM  
2 votes:

Omahawg: naysayer says nay. the edited version was better 'cause it throws you right into the start action of running into gas pumps with the peckerwoods without all the really unnecessary back story. years later when the unedited version came out it seemed like an snl skit....one decent joke beat to death for 15 minutes at a time. in short, King needs a good editor to slap him back some. that no longer happens though 'cause of who he is.


See, I like the long build-up to the inevitable decimation of humanity; I've always liked the early parts of King's books as he's so good at shaping characters who seem not just human but like average people you know.
2012-11-16 10:21:04 PM  
2 votes:

B.L.Z. Bub: I admit I'm mostly a noob about Stephen King's books. I only ever read one, Bag of Bones. My understanding is that he's like the George Lucas of literature, always going back and revising his work after the fact, and that The Stand is no exception.


Not really. ASFAIK the only book he's gone back and re-released with changes is The Stand, and the only change he made was to put back in about 300 pages that the publisher cut out. 300 really great pages that really sell the premise of the book: the world has come to an end.
2012-11-16 10:07:34 PM  
2 votes:

B.L.Z. Bub: I admit I'm mostly a noob about Stephen King's books. I only ever read one, Bag of Bones. My understanding is that he's like the George Lucas of literature, always going back and revising his work after the fact, and that The Stand is no exception.


Big difference: Stephen King isn't doing it to sell merchandise.
2012-11-16 09:41:56 PM  
2 votes:

antidisestablishmentarianism: The ABC mini-series was a very good interpretation of the book.


i.qkme.me

The casting decisions were terrible. Randall Flagg was the opposite of a menacingly charismatic leader, even moreso when they glued on the "demon" make-up. The acting performances rivaled "The Room". Who would have thought Rob Lowe could act so poorly without saying a word? The production values were outright laughable. 99% of the US is dead, but the only sense you have of it is the characters saying it.

In other words, it was as good as King's "It" mini-series.
2012-11-16 09:25:26 PM  
2 votes:
Also, besides those wonderful boobies the only way you can improve on the TV mini-series is with an R rated film and modern special effects. The ABC mini-series was a very good interpretation of the book.
2012-11-16 07:31:18 PM  
2 votes:
Act I: Almost everyone dies.
Act II: The survivors choose sides.
Act III: They fight; good guys win.
The End
2012-11-17 11:48:02 AM  
1 vote:
I know many Stephen King faithful consider it among their favorites, though i place it in his bottom half of works written prior to him jumping the shark (anything pre-1988).

That said, having just seen Argo, and previously having seen Gone Baby Gone, i'm now a big Ben Affleck fan. dude has reinvented himself as an exceptional director... Can't hate on that.
2012-11-17 10:38:17 AM  
1 vote:

Vexed Thespian: yeah, but he was the bomb in phantoms


yo
2012-11-17 10:38:01 AM  
1 vote:

x23: BalugaJoe: they should do a Langoliers remake instead.

talk about horrible CGI. pretty sure i've seen N64 games with better graphics.


Langoliers , holy shiat, I barely remember that. That was terrible. But as for the CGI, it was a TV movie in 1995, cut it a little slack. But if I remember it had a story that could have been a 30 minute Twilight Zone episode. Hardly worth a movie.
2012-11-17 08:26:05 AM  
1 vote:

Loucifer: I really liked The Stand mini-series. I thought the cast was just fine.


This. And moreover, how they hell do you take a 1200+ page book, that took a 6 hour mini series to cover relatively well, and cut it down to a 2 hour movie and expect it not to suck worse than anything ever made about a King story. Affleck needs his head examined.
2012-11-17 05:25:15 AM  
1 vote:
Maybe because like any king story it has to be heavily adapted to even be close to a good movie. The shining is the only great one, misery is good. Thats it.
2012-11-17 04:52:03 AM  
1 vote:
1408. Best King adaptation.
2012-11-17 03:17:47 AM  
1 vote:
M O O N spells 36 hours of story and an ending that will make LOST's seem like a stuck landing.
2012-11-17 03:00:11 AM  
1 vote:
There's some other Stephen King stories that aren't such thematically well-tread ground, which I'd rather see directed by Affleck. End of the world stuff has been done to pieces in the last few years.

Give me a farking IT movie with the Creature from the Black Lagoon, Frankenstein's Monster, Teenage Werewolf, the Black Spot, the giant bird, the cosmic horror, the smoke lodge, Maturin, the things in the abandoned refrigerator,
2012-11-17 01:49:06 AM  
1 vote:

NeoCortex42: I still think it could be done amazingly well if it was made into an HBO mini-series. I don't have high hopes for a feature length movie, though. Or even a pair of movies.


HBO could have done it better but considering the era, ABC didn't do a terrible job.

Funbags: In other words, it was as good as King's "It" mini-series.


They stayed closer to the book than many other adaptations of the era, especially Crichton books. Sphere and Congo were totally slaughtered.

brianbankerus: It was indeed an excellent two hour movie... followed by a terrible two hour movie.


Did you read the book? 1,100+ pages and most of it was... hell I don't know. I read it in 7th grade and I don't remember much of the details except they left out the part of the homosexual encounter between trashcan man and that kid. 

I will say that King novels tend to be closer to the book than many others .
2012-11-17 01:35:40 AM  
1 vote:

hubiestubert: If you want to check out King, read his short fiction first. Then you can work into the novels.


That's really where S.King was/is best the short stories. Sure I've read much of his stuff I think some of his best he wrote as Richard Bachman.
2012-11-17 01:24:15 AM  
1 vote:

hubiestubert: The problem with both, is that they were mini-series for network TV. Stephen King is rarely that safe.


That's part of it, but another part is the narrative stuff that would either have to be a voice over or left out. I actually just finished re-reading It last night, and I was noticing how well he pegged Beverly and her abusive relationships. He nailed the behavior of women who enter this cycle, the trend that usually starts in childhood, the denial, the predatory behavior of the men who seek these women out so that they can reel them in. My mother died at the hands of an abusive boyfriend, my father beat her as well. I've known women over the years who can't seem to quit dating these kinds of guys. Having been around this since childhood, I had never quite articulated what was involved, and this time through It, I was wholly cognizant of how important that part was to the story, yet how hard it would be to portray. Their fight and her flight really don't sum up how well King knows the inner dialogue of just that single part of the story..
2012-11-17 01:16:49 AM  
1 vote:

RedPhoenix122: I could see this airing on FX or AMC.


I could totally go for either one. I think it could work.
2012-11-17 01:12:30 AM  
1 vote:

Mikey1969: B.L.Z. Bub: I admit I'm mostly a noob about Stephen King's books. I only ever read one, Bag of Bones. My understanding is that he's like the George Lucas of literature, always going back and revising his work after the fact, and that The Stand is no exception.

Really? Maybe you should read the books instead of listening to other people tell you what to think. He's released versions with stuff he originally wanted to add, but that doesn't change the version you read, and he doesn't refuse to ever let you see the original version ever again.


King's moved onto longer fiction, and has done so for a while now, but I think that his real talent is in the short story format. He gets in, he hooks, he gets out. His short fiction is brilliant. You can see a lot of the elements that he eventually worked into his longer fiction begin in his short fiction, and in a way, he still writes short fiction, just linked together. He writes vignettes that link into a larger narrative, and in that way, he drives the story along. It works in his long fiction, because he takes a lot disparate elements and perspectives, and that is sort of what makes his long fiction so weighty--they are collections of a LOT of stories.

He's a guy who has a lock on what he does, and does well. He likes to play with characters. He likes to see where they'll take him. He plays with that a lot with his Dark Tower series, including a light on his own self. He IS a perfectionist, and he has a sort of love/hate relationship with editors at this point, and to be fair, King sort of needs a good editor, and a lot of them are afraid to rein him in when he gets off on a tangent. Wizard and Glass was about 150 pages too long, and the last portion should have been more a novella, but novellas are hard to sell, and that's too bad, because the shorter format works for him well.

If you want to check out King, read his short fiction first. Then you can work into the novels.
2012-11-17 01:01:30 AM  
1 vote:

Funbags: antidisestablishmentarianism: The ABC mini-series was a very good interpretation of the book.

[i.qkme.me image 479x361]

The casting decisions were terrible. Randall Flagg was the opposite of a menacingly charismatic leader, even moreso when they glued on the "demon" make-up. The acting performances rivaled "The Room". Who would have thought Rob Lowe could act so poorly without saying a word? The production values were outright laughable. 99% of the US is dead, but the only sense you have of it is the characters saying it.

In other words, it was as good as King's "It" mini-series.


Pretty damn much.

The problem with both, is that they were mini-series for network TV. Stephen King is rarely that safe.

IT just made me sad, because it IS one of King's best. Brilliant and taunt, expansive in detail, vignettes designed to show the characters, characters that you can feel King's love for. The TV miniseries missed the driving element, or rather, backed away from the real heart of the book:

"Maybe there aren't any such things as good friends or bad friends - maybe there are just friends, people who stand by you when you're hurt and who help you feel not so lonely. Maybe they're always worth being scared for, and hoping for, and living for. Maybe worth dying for too, if that's what has to be. No good friends. No bad friends. Only people you want, need to be with; people who build their houses in your heart."

The Stand
suffered the same problem. It just looked cheap and tawdry, and that was the style of the time, but it can be done better. Look at HBO's Rome. The industry has grown up a lot. You can do effects a lot better today, and far more efficiently. The Stand is likewise huge. There is lot of material to cover, a lot of characters. A mini-series is sort of a must if you want to do it any sort of justice. It's not something you can just pop into a 2 hour or even a 3 hour format.
2012-11-17 12:49:51 AM  
1 vote:

Loucifer: I really liked The Stand mini-series. I thought the cast was just fine.


It does seem dated now, but it was quite good. I suspect the majority of people who don't like it weren't old enough to have read the book when it came out and then watch the mini-series during its first run.
2012-11-17 12:31:01 AM  
1 vote:
Argo - 95% fresh
The Town - 94% fresh
Gone Baby Gone - 94% fresh

Hate on him if you want, but Affleck is one of the top directors in Hollywood.
2012-11-17 12:30:05 AM  
1 vote:

tinfoil-hat maggie: Gyrfalcon: I don't understand the Hollywood producer mentality that keeps them going after King's books. "Let's take an incredibly long book with about 19 subplots and try to distill it down to a 110-minute movie! Yeah! That'll totally work!" They have two options: Take out all the subplots, which means they're telling a pretty standard post-apocalypse story (The Stand is not remarkably different from any other end-of-the-world novel) OR try to shoehorn in every single subplot in under two hours and thereby reduce them all to caricatures (here's the deaf guy, here's the retard, here's the Lord Humungous...I mean, here's the Devil).

Give it up. The Stand cannot be a movie. It cannot be a miniseries on basic cable. You MIGHT pull it off on HBO or Showtime if you had the budget. But it won't ever be a film. Not even a Peter Jackson-style LOTR epic release. Sorry.

The first part was sorta fun but I have to agree with the others it got, well, stupid by the end. I'm amazed anyone would want to remake it and especially as a movie.


****SPOILER ALERT****


But yeah the hand of god sets off the nuke??? WTF????
2012-11-17 12:05:40 AM  
1 vote:
I will watch the hell out of this!!
2012-11-16 11:56:59 PM  
1 vote:

MurphyMurphy: And the Hobbit is going to be 3 movies.


It's also pulling from the LOTR appendices; fleshing out what Gandalf was doing for all those periods when he left Bilbo & the dwarves on their own. (mainly, the forming of the White Council, ousting the Necromancer from Dol Guldur, revealing him to be Sauron)
2012-11-16 11:44:26 PM  
1 vote:
The man in black fled across the desert, and the gunslinger followed.

/The Eyes of the Dragon could be cool too.
2012-11-16 11:35:06 PM  
1 vote:

Gyrfalcon: I don't understand the Hollywood producer mentality that keeps them going after King's books. "Let's take an incredibly long book with about 19 subplots and try to distill it down to a 110-minute movie! Yeah! That'll totally work!"


And the Hobbit is going to be 3 movies.

The Hobbit.
A book I read in one weekend when I was 12.

/under the dome is a pretty decent S.K. read
2012-11-16 11:25:52 PM  
1 vote:
I really liked The Stand mini-series. I thought the cast was just fine.
2012-11-16 10:58:44 PM  
1 vote:

Confabulat: almost never does sequels


A planned sequel to "Salem's Lot" became a sub-plot in Dark Tower 5. "Salem's Lot" itself formed the center of a trilogy of sorts, book-ended by the short stories "Jerusalem's Lot" and "One For The Road". All the Castle Rock stories kinda bled in to each other. "Dolores Claiborne" & "Gerald's Game" were companion stories, as were "Desperation" and "The Regulators".
2012-11-16 10:57:41 PM  
1 vote:

Confabulat: He's only now coming out with a sequel to The Shining, and he almost never does sequels except for the Dark Tower and Black House.


All of his (non-Tower) books are kind of sequels, in that they're all set in the same Mythic Maine. But yeah, I can't really think of any that feature the same protagonist.
2012-11-16 10:47:48 PM  
1 vote:
The reason you're having a hard time is that the book is too damned long for a movie.

Just go turn another Philip K. Dick short into a movie. You've done it before to meh results.

You can't do C.M. Kornbluth's The Marching Morons because Mike Judge did Idiocracy, but there's plenty of shorts out there to work with.
2012-11-16 10:46:16 PM  
1 vote:

skepticultist: ASFAIK the only book he's gone back and re-released with changes is The Stand


He rewrote a lot of the first Gunslinger book to fit into the mythology he made up later. The first one is a lot better in my opinion but it isn't published anymore as far as I know.

Other than that, I don't think King has re-written anything he's done. He's only now coming out with a sequel to The Shining, and he almost never does sequels except for the Dark Tower and Black House.
2012-11-16 10:36:17 PM  
1 vote:

B.L.Z. Bub: I admit I'm mostly a noob about Stephen King's books. I only ever read one, Bag of Bones. My understanding is that he's like the George Lucas of literature, always going back and revising his work after the fact, and that The Stand is no exception.


No. He has recently tried to tie all his works into a single universe using a fantasy series (the Dark Tower) he started and abandoned back in the early 90s, but beyond that he hasn't started changing his work to fit some evolving worldview.

As already pointed out, the Stand as written was considered "too long" to be published and was edited. After it was a huge hit, the publisher went back to the well by releasing the "unedited" edition with King's approval. I've only read the unedited version; it's fine and probably a better read than the shortened version.

I am a little worried about King at the moment as he's working on a project he's threatened for 25 years called "Dr Sleep" which will be a sequel of sorts to The Shining in that an adult Danny is the central character. It could either be very good, or very bad.
2012-11-16 10:04:25 PM  
1 vote:
I admit I'm mostly a noob about Stephen King's books. I only ever read one, Bag of Bones. My understanding is that he's like the George Lucas of literature, always going back and revising his work after the fact, and that The Stand is no exception.
2012-11-16 09:58:48 PM  
1 vote:

RedPhoenix122: Rubber Biscuit: RedPhoenix122: Summoner101: Is that the chick from Just Shoot Me?

IMDB concurs.

If you look at some sweater shots of her from that show, you can see that each breast is actually as large or larger than her head.

Hmm...I'm gonna need to see more evidence. Not that I don't believe you or anything.


She's annoyingly modest but

www.howmuchdotheyweigh.com
2012-11-16 09:51:01 PM  
1 vote:

RedPhoenix122: Summoner101: Is that the chick from Just Shoot Me?

IMDB concurs.


If you look at some sweater shots of her from that show, you can see that each breast is actually as large or larger than her head.
2012-11-16 09:43:13 PM  
1 vote:
Been done, Ben.

Just let it go.
2012-11-16 09:39:34 PM  
1 vote:

antidisestablishmentarianism: Also, besides those wonderful boobies the only way you can improve on the TV mini-series is with an R rated film and modern special effects. The ABC mini-series was a very good interpretation of the book.


It was a pretty good adaptation of it. I still think it could be done amazingly well if it was made into an HBO mini-series. I don't have high hopes for a feature length movie, though. Or even a pair of movies.

Ditto with It. As perfect as Tim Curry was, the rest of the cast and production looks incredibly dated and lacking.
2012-11-16 09:23:02 PM  
1 vote:

Mugato: All I remember from that mini-series as a youth is

[intimatecelebs.com image 608x609]


Mmmmmmm. Nadine.
2012-11-16 08:27:51 PM  
1 vote:
All I remember from that mini-series as a youth is

intimatecelebs.com
2012-11-16 07:55:18 PM  
1 vote:
The most important piece of advice I can give you Ben: No Molly Ringwald.
 
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