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Doctor Sleep director terrified waiting for Stephen King’s blessing for film

Stephen King (Joel Ryan/PA)
Stephen King (Joel Ryan/PA)

Doctor Sleep director Mike Flanagan has said he was “terrified” waiting to get author Stephen King’s blessing for the film.

The psychological horror movie starring Ewan McGregor is based on King’s 2013 book, which is a sequel to his 1977 novel The Shining.

Flanagan said of waiting to get a “yes” from the writer: “I am still kind of processing that.

“We were terrified when we submitted the script to Stephen King, before we shot.

“And when he blessed the script, that was the first moment we could relax a little bit.”

Ewan McGregor
Ewan McGregor (Jane Barlow/PA)

The film continues the story of Danny Torrance 40 years after his terrifying stay at the Overlook Hotel in The Shining.

He has fought to find some semblance of peace but it is shattered when he encounters Abra, a courageous teenager with a powerful extrasensory gift known as the “shine”.

Flanagan said he believes King’s work will also resonate with readers.

He said: “I think Stephen King, at his heart, is a humanist, and he’s also optimistic about the world.

“He acknowledges that the world is dark, that the world is fraught with peril; he’s not afraid to examine the darker sides of human nature.

“There’s no safety net in his writing, but at the heart of it, though, he believes in the inherent goodness and potential of human beings.

“And that’s what I think resonates so much: in the Stephen King universe, an eternal, all-powerful monster can meet its match if it comes up against the right children. If it comes up against the bonds of friendship or family.”

Doctor Sleep is released on October 31.

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