Entertainment Weekly recently ran an article highlighting the parallel-yet-never-overlapping careers of Stephen King and Steven Spielberg; a Tale of Two Steves, if you will. In it, the author and the filmmaker discussed several times they almost but didn’t collaborate over the decades, while alluding to a possible team-up on The Talisman (a novel King co-wrote with Peter Straub).
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Of all the missed opportunities, none stings worse than the could-have-been collaboration on 1982’s Poltergeist. The article explains how a message that was never received prevented the connection, making it an especially tragic loss.
King, 70, reveals that there was one movie they almost did together: Poltergeist. “It didn’t work out because it was before the internet and we had a communication breakdown,” he says.
Spielberg adds, “Yeah, I wanted him to help me out with the script and sort of write it with me, but he was unavailable.”
King never got the message — until it was too late. “I was on a ship going across the Atlantic to England,” he recalls. It took so long to reply that Spielberg moved on.
So what do you guys think? How awesome would it have been if Stephen King had been one of the primary architects of Poltergeist? Do you hope the two Steves hook up to produce The Talisman? Let’s discuss in the Comments section!
About The Talisman: The Talisman is a 1984 fantasy novel by American writers Stephen King and Peter Straub. The plot is not related to that of Walter Scott’s 1825 novel of the same name, although there is one oblique reference to “a Sir Walter Scott novel.” The Talisman was nominated for both the Locus and World Fantasy Awards in 1985. King and Straub followed up with a sequel, Black House (2001), that picks up with a now-adult Jack as a retired Los Angeles homicide detective trying to solve a series of murders in the small town of French Landing, Wisconsin. (Source)
Official Synopsis: Strange and creepy happenings beset an average California family, the Freelings — Steve (Craig T. Nelson), Diane (JoBeth Williams), teenaged Dana (Dominique Dunne), eight-year-old Robbie (Oliver Robins), and five-year-old Carol Ann (Heather O’Rourke) — when ghosts commune with them through the television set. Initially friendly and playful, the spirits turn unexpectedly menacing, and, when Carol Ann goes missing, Steve and Diane turn to a parapsychologist and eventually an exorcist for help.