'Doctor Sleep' Recasts Iconic 'The Shining' Characters

The upcoming Doctor Sleep is the sequel to Stephen King's The Shining, though the film will also feature sequences that take place before the original narrative, requiring young versions of familiar characters to participate. The upcoming adaptation has cast Alex Essoe as Wendy Torrance and Carl Lumbly for Dick Halloran.

doctor sleep alex essoe carl lumbly
(Photo: ComicBook)

Wendy Torrance was previously played by Shelley Duvall in the 1980 adaptation of The Shining. Essoe previously starred in Starry Eyes and Midnighters. Scatman Crothers played Dick Holloran in that adaptation, with Lumbly recently having been seen in Supergirl and A Cure for Wellness. The two will be joining the previously announced Ewan McGregor, who will star as Danny Torrance, and Rebecca Ferguson as Rose the Hat, the leader of a cult who targets individuals with Danny's psychological gifts.

Another recent addition to the cast is Westworld star Zahn McClarnon, who is reportedly in talks to play Crow Daddy, Rose's right-hand man, according to Variety.

Stephen King's website describes the story, "Haunted by the inhabitants of the Overlook Hotel where he spent one horrific childhood year, Danny Torrance has been drifting for decades, desperate to shed his father’s legacy of despair, alcoholism, and violence. Finally, he settles in a New Hampshire town, an AA community that sustains him, and a job at a nursing home where his remnant 'shining' power provides the crucial final comfort to the dying. Aided by a prescient cat, he becomes 'Doctor Sleep.' Then Dan meets the evanescent Abra Stone, and it is her spectacular gift, the brightest shining ever seen, that reignites Dan’s own demons and summons him to a battle for Abra’s soul and survival."

The film will be directed by Mike Flanagan, who previously delivered audiences Oculus, Ouija: Origin of Evil, and the King adaptation Gerald's Game.

While the Stanley Kubrick-directed 1980 adaptation of The Shining is considered by many to be a seminal horror movie, King himself was incredibly disappointed with the final product, ultimately collaborating with Mick Garris to deliver audiences a mini-series adaptation in the '90s.

"If you read the book first, that's what it's about, is the alcoholism and the humanity of a guy losing his humanity. That pressure cooker that's going to blow, that this is a guy saddled by guilt and alcoholism," Garris previously shared with ComicBook.com. "Whereas Kubrick's film, at the time, I really was not a fan of the movie at all and I didn't know anyone who was, but it resonated with young people like teenagers and everything."

He added, "I recognize it now as a great Kubrick film, but a flawed King adaptation. At that time, that book was my favorite book of all time. I was thinking, 'God, the genius of Stanley Kubrick and The Shining. This is going to be the scariest movie ever made.'"

Doctor Sleep is slated to hit theaters on January 24, 2020.


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[H/T Deadline]