Stephen King’s MILE 81 Is Headed To The Big Screen

Everyone remain calm, but it sounds like some changes have been made to the source material.

According to Deadline, Alistair Legrand (The Diabolical) has signed on to direct an adaptation of the Stephen King novella Mile 81, from a script written by Legrand and Luke Harvest. The project's being produced by Ross M. Dinerstein (who previously produced another King adaptation, Netflix's 1922) and will soon be shopped around at the European Film Market in Berlin. In other words: this is a low-key King adaptation that doesn't have distribution yet ... but given the ongoing studio thirst for all things King, it'll likely get snapped up by somebody.

For those unfamiliar with the novella, Mile 81 was originally an e-book that was later expanded for inclusion in King's recent short story collection, The Bazaar of Bad Dreams. My recollection of the latter version is that it mostly centered around a kid who stumbles upon a weird car at a decommissioned service station along the highway, only to watch in horror as the car eats a number of people. My memories of the ending are hazy, but according to Wikipedia, it's eventually revealed that the car is an alien which has taken on the form of something familiar in order to lure humans into its hungry maw. 

The plot synopsis Deadline has for the film version is, well, a bit different:

"Set around a remote, boarded-up rest stop, the film will follow 12-year-old Pete, his brother, and a group of strangers who must fight to survive as they’re hunted by a mysterious force."

Sounds like this version will feature more characters. Or, at the very least, characters who interact with one another a bit more than they did in the novella? Honestly, I'm not terribly concerned with the changes on this one. Mile 81's not exactly an untouchable King classic, and if Legrand and company wanna juice it up a bit, fair enough. All that really matters is that the movie's worth spending 90-or-so minutes with.

Hey, speaking of Stephen King adaptations that take place along highways, what the hell's going on with In The Tall Grass? We know that one's headed to Netflix via director Vincenzo Natali (Splice, Cube), but it feels like forever since we heard any updates on that one. If one of you knows Natali, could you ask him for us? We're getting impatient over here.

Stay tuned for more on Mile 81 (and, yes, In The Tall Grass) as further updates become available.

(Note: Header photo by CZMarlin, used with permission via Wikimedia Commons)