Aquaman director James Wan is bringing Stephen King’s The Tommyknockers to life on the big screen.
Wan and It producer Roy Lee are looking to adapt King’s 1987 horror novel for film. Wan’s Atomic Monster and Lee’s Vertigo banners are working with legacy producer Larry Sanitsky on the new adaptation, as he previously worked on the 1993 television take on The Tommyknockers and holds the screen rights to the novel.
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Sanitsky shed some light on the new project and his decision to help bring it to film in an interview with The Hollywood Reporter.
“It is an allegorical tale of addiction (Stephen was struggling with his own at the time), the threat of nuclear power, the danger of mass hysteria and the absurdity of technical evolution run amuck,” Sanitsky said. “All are as relevant today as the day the novel was written. It is also a tale about the eternal power of love and the grace of redemption.”
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Last year’s box office and critical domination by It (which managed to bring in $700 million) has renewed Hollywood interest in adapting King’s novels, so it makes sense that studios would be looking to novels like The Tommyknockers. While the original ABC series was a success, NBC tried to get another adaptation off the ground in 2013, but that fizzled out.
The Tommyknockers follows the story of a town in Maine plagued by the effects of an alien gas coming from a spaceship. Residents of the town develop superhuman abilities at the cost of their sanity and the building of a collective hive mind. One resident, Gard, has a steel plate in his head and can withstand the gas’s influence. He sets about trying to fix his small town.