The weekend receipts for Warner Bros.' Doctor Sleep hit like an ax to the chest this weekend, as the ambitious horror film failed to attract a win at the domestic box office. Opening to the tune of $14 million and second place, the sequel to the classic horror film The Shining fell well below industry forecasts and expectations, bringing in half as much as some expected. Following the success of Warner Bros. other major Stephen King property IT, whose sequel has brought in $462 million worldwide so far this year, the floundering of this feature brought up a lot of questions for the studios, especially given their ambitious plans for its future.
In a story about the film's box office earnings, The Hollywood Reporter brings word that Warner Bros. was eager to expand on the IP with even more films following Doctor Sleep. Despite the story in King's book officially ending with the Doctor Sleep novel, the outlet reports that Warner Bros. had already completed a deal with director Mike Flanagan for a follow-up, reportedly titled "Hallorann." Flanagan and his Intrepid Pictures banner were reportedly already in the process of scripting the film which would draw "from the character who appears in both The Shining and Doctor Sleep.” In The Shining, Dick Hallorann is the chef at the Overlook Hotel played by Scatman Crothers who befrends Danny and opens up to him about his own psychic abilities, giving the original film its title. The character re-appears in Doctor Sleep played by Carl Lumbly.
Warning: Potential spoilers for DOCTOR SLEEP below!
Given the character's death in The Shining, and how his ghostly appearances in Doctor Sleep play out, a feature film elaborating on the life of Dick Hallorann would need to dial the clock back to the character's early life. Hallorann makes a note of it in the original The Shining when explaining to Danny how he and his grandmother would use their Shining abilities to have conversations without ever opening their mouths. He elaborates on it slightly more in Doctor Sleep, revealing the ghost of his grandfather haunted him after his death. A feature film about the character could also seemingly follow his path from young psychic to head chef at the Overlook Hotel, a journey that would be interesting to see given his many years of experience at the location despite its numerous ghastly inhabitants (most of whom he seems to be aware of). Following the terrible weekend haul for Doctor Sleep though, it seems unlikely that the project will ever see the light of day, but we can dream!
Ewan McGregor stars in Doctor Sleep as the titular character aka Danny Torrance. The film also stars Rebecca Ferguson (Mission: Impossible 5 & 6) as predatory cult leader, Rose the Hat; Kyliegh Curran as Abra Stone, with a Shining power of her own; with Cliff Curtis as Danny's friend Billy Freeman; and Zahn McClarnon (Westworld) as Crow Daddy.
Doctor Sleep is now playing in theaters everywhere.