Stephen King Lambastes Warner Bros. For Sitting On ‘Salem’s Lot’ Reboot Going To Max

Never cross a vampire in salem's lot
You never cross a vampire for their sake in Salem's Lot (1979), Warner Bros. Television

Warner Bros. Discovery has made a habit since 2022 of abandoning films near completion for tax purposes. There was a litany of canceled projects and shows, but the two most noteworthy victims were Batgirl and Coyote vs. Acme.

Salem's Lot-somebody out there
Somebody is always outside your window in Salem’s Lot (1979), Warner Bros. Television

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It’s a sad state of affairs for those two projects that’s caused consternation among emotionally invested onlookers.

However, WBD has decided to take a chance on at least one shelved project and they are taking a page out of their 2021 playbook in the process. They are looking past theaters with a finished Salem’s Lot remake and putting it straight onto Max at some point this year per The Nerdist.

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The film, which is written, directed, and produced by Conjuring Universe scribe Gary Dauberman, has been hanging in limbo since late ‘22. It was initially set for a release in September of that year but was bumped to April of the following year.

Then it got lost in the shuffle of shifting film dates and was almost forgotten. The author of the novel it’s based on didn’t forget. Stephen King has taken Warner to task from time to time on social media while singing the adaptation’s praises. 

Screenshot-Stephen King's Lot
Stephen King (@StephenKing) via Twitter/X

“The Warner Bros remake of SALEM’S LOT, currently shelved, is muscular and involving. It has the feel of ‘Old Hollywood,’ when a film was given a chance to draw a breath before getting to business. When attention spans were longer, in other words,” King wrote on X in 2023.

By the time he sent out that post, the film had already been in the can for two years. Star Makenzie Leigh announced on Instagram when it wrapped in 2021 while more recently, King slammed WBD again for sitting on something he vouches for adamantly.

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“Between you and me, Twitter, I’ve seen the new SALEM’S LOT, and it’s quite good. Old-school horror filmmaking: slow build, big payoff. Not sure why WB is holding it back; not like it’s embarrassing, or anything. Who knows. I just write the f–ing things,” he posted in February.

First published in 1975 as a follow-up to Carrie, Salem’s Lot tells the story of writer Ben Mears (played by Lewis Pullman in the new version) who investigates an epidemic of vampirism sweeping his sleepy, idyllic hometown of Jerusalem’s Lot.

King writes the things
Stephen King (@StephenKing) via Twitter/X

The original adaptation of the book was a 1979 TV miniseries directed by Tobe Hooper. That was followed by a sequel, A Return To Salem’s Lot, in 1987 which was fortunate enough to get a theatrical release despite its poor critical reception.

A second, lesser-known miniseries based on the book starring Rob Lowe hit the airwaves of TNT in 2004.

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