Tag Archives: J.J. Abrams

Stephen King Opens Up About Adapting His Own Work With Apple’s Take On Lisey’s Story

The prolific author Stephen King has seen many of his works adapted for film and television — including CBS All Access’ The Stand, HBO’s The Outsider and the IT franchise — and singled out the personal nature of bringing Lisey’s Story to life on Apple as perhaps one of the bigger challenges in adapting his vast library.

“Be all the way in, as much as possible, or be all the way out,” King said Friday about his philosophy for bringing his work to the screen. “There’s been a lot of projects [where it’s like] step back, write books, maybe something will come along, a passion project, and this was that, a passion project.”

Lisey’s Story marks a rare move for King, who wrote all eight episodes of Apple’s take on his 2006 horror-romance best-seller Lisey’s Story. The series, which reunites him with frequent collaborator J.J. Abrams, along with stars Julianne Moore and Clive Owen, and is due in the summer on the streamer.

“Stephen makes a great point, most anything is filmable,” Abrams told reporters Friday during a virtual panel as part of the Television Critics Association’s winter press tour. “The question is what should be — and not what can be. It’s hard to think of all the amazing stories Stephen has written.”

King noted that the personal nature of Lisey’s Story made filming the series “particularly challenging” as “it goes through so many different levels of remembrance.” The thriller revolves around Lisey Landon (Moore) two years after the death of her husband, famous novelist Scott Landon (Owen). The drama follows the unsettling events that prompt Lisey to face memories of her marriage to Scott that she has deliberately blocked out of her mind.

“Lisey’s Story means a lot to me because it’s the one I love best,” King told reporters Friday. “It’s a story about love and marriage and the creative impulse and it’s also got a kickass villain in it, which I liked a lot.”

King noted that the novel was inspired by his own experience coming home after being hospitalized with double pneumonia. Following a three-week hospitalization, King arrived as his wife decided to remodel his office. While still heavily medicated and trying to get back on his feet, he was stunned to find his office completely empty. “I thought, ‘This is what this room would look like after I die,’ and Lisey’s Story came from that,” he said.

While much of Lisey’s Story was filmed before the pandemic forced productions across the globe to shut down, shooting was ultimately finished after many TV series returned to work. producers also noted that the pandemic makes a lot of the themes in Lisey’s Story more relevant now than a year ago. “Themes of isolation, loneliness and how we view the past come through in a different way now,” said Bad Robot head of television Ben Stephenson. Added King: “What gave me a chill was a scene where we see Lisey come into hospital room and she’s wearing a mask. I thought, ‘My God, this is what we’re all doing now.'”

Lisey’s Story marks the latest collaboration for Abrams and King, who previously teamed on Hulu’s Castle Rock and 11.22.63. The duo met during Abrams’ breakout, Lost, and have remained in touch in the years that followed. King also noted that he and Abrams have been discussing a horror anthology called Tiny Horrors.

“They’ve got a great organization and give great Christmas presents at the end of the year,” King joked of his long-standing partnership with Abrams’ Bad Robot banner. “I just love working with them. It’s been a great relationship.”

A specific premiere date for Lisey’s Story has not yet been announced.

Reprinted from The Hollywood Reporter

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Watch The Little Voice Trailer

Apple shared a first look video of upcoming Apple TV+ series “Little Voice,” a coming of age drama created by J.J. Abrams, Sara Bareilles, and Jessie Nelson.

A love letter to the diverse musicality of New York starring Brittany O’Grady, Sean Teale, Colton Ryan, Shalini Bathina, Kevin Valdez, Phillip Johnson Richardson and Chuck Cooper, “Little Voice” follows Bess King, a uniquely talented performer struggling to fulfill her dreams while navigating rejection, love, and complicated family issues. Featuring original music by Grammy and Tony Award nominee, Sara Bareilles, this is a story about finding your authentic voice–and the courage to use it.

The TV show, which is produced by J.J. Abrams’ Bad Robot Productions, will feature original music by artist Sara Barellies. J.J. Abrams is an executive producer on the series.

“Little Voice” is set to premiere on ‌Apple TV‌+ on July 10.

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HBO Max Orders Shining Series From J.J. Abrams Bad Robot Productions

HBO will continue its partnership with J.J. Abrams Bad Robot Productions by ordering a new adaptation of The Shining.

Overlook, is a horror-thriller series inspired by and featuring iconic characters from Stephen King’s masterpiece The Shining. Overlook explores the untold, terrifying stories of the most famous haunted hotel in American fiction and reunites Bad Robot with King and Warner Bros. Television, who previously collaborated on the acclaimed psychological-horror series Castle Rock for Hulu.

Overlook will be executive produced by J.J. Abrams and its Head of Television, Ben Stephenson. Rachel Rusch Rich, Bad Robot’s Executive Vice President of Television will serve as a co-executive producer. Warner Bros. International Television Distribution will be the global distributor for the programs.

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J.J. Abrams And The Secrets of ‘Skywalker’

Director J.J. Abrams is trying to talk about his new Star Wars movie, but the process of making it keeps intruding. He’s in his office on the second floor of his Bad Robot production company’s Willy Wonka-worthy headquarters in Santa Monica, and his assistant keeps opening the door to pass him notes, as Abrams’ iPhone buzzes with increasingly urgent-seeming texts from the film’s visual-effects supervisor. He’s fresh from a stage over at Sony Studios, where John Williams was conducting an orchestra through the score for December 20th’s Star Wars Episode IX: The Rise of Skywalker. Just last week, Abrams was doing reshoots right here at Bad Robot, in a green-screen room that allows him maximum movie-tweaking flexibility. It’s mid-October, and the film is 71 days away from release.

Episode IX was supposed to be written and directed by Colin Trevorrow of Jurassic World fame, until Lucasfilm president Kathleen Kennedy reportedly rejected his screenplay, though Lucasfilm calls it a mutual parting of ways. That opened the door for Abrams, who directed 2015’s The Force Awakens, to jump back in with co-screenwriter Chris Terrio and start from scratch — hence the current crunch.

 

“It’s probably a lot easier than being a schoolteacher,” Abrams says. “But it has very particular challenges. Especially when you’re directing, and you’ve got people in the scene that aren’t human. When you have, in some cases, a scene with someone no longer living.” Among the trials of Episode IX, in addition to forging a satisfying conclusion to one of the most loved stories of the modern world, was dealing with the tragic and sudden 2016 death of Carrie Fisher. Unlike Luke Skywalker and Han Solo, the character of Leia is still alive in the saga, a dilemma Abrams resolved via unused Force Awakens footage.

Abrams just struck a massive production deal with Disney rival WarnerMedia, which could get his hands on Superman, Batman, and the rest of the DC Comics pantheon — there are a notable number of Superman toys among the whimsical decorations downstairs. “We haven’t had those discussions yet,” Abrams says, not quite convincingly.

Read the Rolling Stone Interview HERE.

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J.J. Abrams, The Modern Master of Mystery, Makes His Mark On Marvel In The Spider-Man #1 Trailer

J.J. Abrams takes the webbed wonder to new heights when he and his son Henry partner with legendary spider-artist Sara Pichelli for a Spider-Man story like you’ve never seen before! Cadaverous, a terrifying new villain, will force Spidey to make some of the hardest choices of his life. Can he protect MJ, Manhattan…or even himself? Check out this brand new trailer for Spider-Man #1 featuring Executive Editor Nick Lowe and writers J.J. and Henry Abrams!  

Die-Cut Variant Cover designed by Chip Kidd

“Having these geniuses working together on Spider-Man, the greatest fictional character of all time, couldn’t be better,” Lowe exclaimed, a sentiment shared by the Abrams. “We knew [Sara Pichelli’s] stuff – she’s a genius,” J.J. added. “The fact that we got Sara to do this book was the luckiest gift of all time.”

Henry Abrams went on to shed more light on the creative team’s thinking behind the scenes. “Spider-Man in general has been one of the most interesting super hero characters to me – how when he gets stronger, his problems get bigger,” he said. “A large focus on our series was [Spider-Man] as a person and not just him as a mask. So how does he deal with these real issues? It’s been a pleasure exploring that.”

“Cadaverous is one of the most terrifying Spider-Man villains of all time – and that’s saying something,” Lowe warned. “Spidey has faced the Green Goblin, Carnage, Venom, and Cadaverous might be even scarier and a little bit grosser than any of them.”

Spider-Man #1 arrives September 18 in comic shops.

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J.J. Abrams & Henry Abrams Make Their Marvel Comics Debut With Spider-Man #1

The secret is out! This September, legendary filmmaker J.J. Abrams (Star Wars, Star Trek, Super 8) and his son Henry Abrams will co-write Spider-Man, a five-issue limited series years in the making, with art by the incredible Sara Pichelli (Miles Morales, Guardians of The Galaxy) and cover art by the amazing Olivier Coipel!

Speaking to The New York Times, J.J. teased, “The story shows Peter Parker in a way you haven’t seen him before.”

“Spider-Man is one of those super heroes where the more you read about him, for me at least, the less I understand him,” added Henry. “He’s so anti-everything that you’d expect from a hero. I think Stan Lee said something about putting the human in superhuman. That is what we’re trying to do.”

Together, the father-son duo will introduce fans to a mysterious new villain named Cadaverous – whose identity remains to be seen…but what do they have planned for Peter Parker and Mary Jane Watson?!

All will be revealed in September 2019 when Spider-Man #1 will be released.

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Watch The New Castle Rock Teaser Trailer

A psychological-horror series set in the Stephen King multiverse, Castle Rock combines the mythological scale and intimate character storytelling of King’s best-loved works, weaving an epic saga of darkness and light, played out on a few square miles of Maine woodland. 

The fictional Maine town of Castle Rock has figured prominently in King’s literary career: Cujo, The Dark Half, IT and Needful Things, as well as novella The Body and numerous short stories such as Rita Hayworth and The Shawshank Redemption are either set there or contain references to Castle Rock. Castle Rock is an original suspense/thriller — a first-of-its-kind reimagining that explores the themes and worlds uniting the entire King canon, while brushing up against some of his most iconic and beloved stories.

Produced by J.J. Abrams, Castle Rock centers on Henry Deaver (Andre Holland), an attorney who returns to the haunted Maine town to represent a prisoner (played by IT actor Bill Skarsgård) locked up in King’s favorite fictional prison, Shawshank. Castle Rock also stars Chosen Jacobs, who played Mike Hanlon in last year’s blockbuster King adaptation IT. The cast also includes Melanie Lynskey, Jane Levy, Scott Glenn, Sissy Spacek and Terry O’Quinn.

Castle Rock debuts July 25 on Hulu.

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Watch Hulu’s Castle Rock Super Bowl Spot 

Hulu has unveiled the Castle Rock Super Bowl spot, which you can watch below! The Stephen King-inspired series premieres on the streaming service this summer.

A psychological-horror series set in the Stephen King multiverse, Castle Rock combines the mythological scale and intimate character storytelling of King’s best-loved works, weaving an epic saga of darkness and light, played out on a few square miles of Maine woodland. The series stars André Holland, Melanie Lynskey, Sissy Spacek, Bill Skarsgård, Jane Levy and Scott Glenn.

Sam Shaw & Dustin Thomason developed the project for television and serve as executive producers along with J.J. Abrams, Ben Stephenson and Liz Glotzer. Castle Rock is from Bad Robot Productions in association with Warner Bros. Television.

Castle Rock is coming to Hulu in Summer 2018.

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J.J. Abrams Directs Celebrity-Filled Trailer For A Comic Book Jimmy Kimmel Made At 10 Years Old

As a gift for Jimmy Kimmel’s 50th birthday, director J.J. Abrams teamed up with Ben Affleck to create a celebrity-filled trailer for a comic book, titled “The Terrific Ten,” that Kimmel made at 10 years old.

Here is the trailer of The Terrific Ten starring Ben Affleck, Matt Damon, Jennifer Aniston, Zach Galifianakis, Jason Bateman, Will Arnett, Cousin Sal, Jon Hamm, Shaq, Ty Burrell, Billy Crudup, Jake Tapper, and Wanda Sykes.

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Watch The First Castle Rock Teaser

Today, at the New York Comic Con, Hulu debuted the first Castle Rock teaser.

A psychological-horror series set in the Stephen King multiverse, Castle Rock combines the mythological scale and intimate character storytelling of King’s best-loved works, weaving an epic saga of darkness and light, played out on a few square miles of Maine woodland. The series stars André Holland, Melanie Lynskey, Sissy Spacek, Billy Skarsgård, Jane Levy and Scott Glenn.

Sam Shaw & Dustin Thomason developed the project for television and serve as executive producers along with J.J. Abrams, Ben Stephenson and Liz Glotzer. Castle Rock is from Bad Robot Productions in association with Warner Bros. Television.

Castle Rock is coming to Hulu in 2018.

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