On 7.28 L.A. Times guy Steven Zeitchik reported that Hollywood writer-producer Laeta Kalogridis and partners Bradley Fischer and James Vanderbilt have been hired by Warner Bros. to try and whip together a prequel to Stanley Kubrick‘s The Shining.
The idea, says Zeitchik, would be to “focus on what happened before Jack Torrance (played by Jack Nicholson in the 1980 film), his wife Wendy (Shelley Duvall) and their psychic son Danny (Danny Lloyd) arrived at the Overlook Hotel where Torrance soon descends into violent madness,” blah blah.
That is really, really a dumb-ass idea. If I was running Warner Bros. I would can the person who dreamt it up. And then I would have him/her physically escorted off the lot. Because Jack Torrance was just a failed writer with an off-and-on drinking issue before he was hired as an Overlook caretaker, a guy who accidentally dislocated his son’s shoulder and then promised to stop drinking, etc. He’s a loser. He’s boring. He’s tedious. (Original Shining author Stephen King found Jack in the inner recesses of his own life and personality before he hit it big as a writer.)
If you want to milk The Shining, create a mini-series in which the main characters are cool-sexy-evil ghosts in the same sense that the vampires in True Blood are cool-sexy-evil. Each new episode would be about these long-dead phantoms — two hot girls and two hot guys, say, who come from different periods (the 1890s, the ’20s, the ’40s) and have been haunting the Overlook for decades and getting into all kinds of dark, foul stuff, but mainly into the heads of various guests who stay at the Overlook, as well as various maids and caretakers (including Delbert Grady) and administrators who work there, and making them act out their worst, darkest impulses. Or something like that. But forget Loser Jack.
Incidentally: Danny Lloyd is either a professor of biology at a community college in Elizabethtown, Kentucky, or a teacher of sciences in Missouri — or both. He will turn 40 years old on January 1, 2013.