While Stephen King rightfully gets all of the praise he deserves for being one of - if not the - leading voice in horror literature, there's a name that doesn't get brought up enough: R.L. Stine.
Though Stine may not have seen as many adaptations as King, he pushes out novels like they're going out of style just like the ladder. We won't be disparaging King at any point here, but it is worth mentioning that Stine arguably had the more important task as a writer. You see, where King kept the adults (and, yes, the off child who snuck It home from the library) horrified, Stine had the incredibly critical job of introducing kids to horror.
The Goosebumps books are responsible countless children getting their introduction to the genre. And, as it happens, many of those kids are either working in or helping run that part of the industry today.
Less known, but no less incredible are R.L. Stine's Fear Street books. Unlike Goosebumps, these novels were made for young adults. Let me tell you - there scenes from his Cheerleader saga that haunt me to this day.
Now, if it sounds like I'm waxing poetic it's because I am very obviously one of the children who Stine introduced to horror. (And the dummy who snuck It home at ten and gave herself nightmares for a month, but that's a story for another time.) It is for that very reason that I'm very thrilled to be writing that Netflix has closed a deal with Disney to produce a Fear Street trilogy based on the aforementioned saga of books. We were already aware of these films, but their announcement came before Disney purchased Fox.
Their release won't be working like a normal trilogy in the sense that we'll get one and have to wait a year for the sequel, either. Turns out Netflix is marketing the event as the Summer of Fear, and will release each film a month apart from one another. It's also worth mentioning that these films are already made.
When Disney bought Fox, they also purchased director Leigh Janiak's completed trilogy. But we've all seen Disney's release slate, and that's without beginning to factor COVID and the theatrical delays that have surrounded it. Now, you'll recall that Disney also owns Hulu, but everyone whose sole form of income isn't streaming is scrambling to stay in the black (or to keep profit margins as close to where they were as possible), so selling to Netflix isn't entirely farfetched.
The first film will take place in 1994 in a sleepy Ohio town, and will terrorize a group of teens (spoiler alert: all of them will terrorize teens). Each of the subsequent films will take place in a different time, with one of which occurring in the 1600s. The other is currently unknown.
All three films are co-written by director Leigh Janiak and her writing partner Phil Graziadei. They were joined by Kyle Killen, and Zak Olkewicz. Meanwhile, the cast comprises of Kiana Madeira, Olivia Welch, Benjamin Flores Jr, Gillian Jacobs, Darrell Britt-Gibson, Ashley Zukerman, Fred Hechinger, Julia Rehwald and Jeremy Ford.
Survives on a steady IV of caffeine, rants, pixie dust and fangirling. Will probably sass you.
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