It was 2013 when Stephen King finally gave us a sequel to The Shining. The novel, Doctor Sleep. The idea came from an online poll that King posted on December 1st 2009 where he asked fans to vote for which book he should write next, Doctor Sleep or the next Dark Tower novel The Wind Through the Keyholes:
I mentioned two potential projects while I was on the road, one a new Mid-World book (not directly about Roland Deschain, but yes, he and his friend Cuthbert are in it, hunting a skin-man, which are what werewolves are called in that lost kingdom) and a sequel to The Shining called Doctor Sleep. Are you interested in reading either of these? If so, which one turns your dials more? [We] will be counting your votes (and of course it all means nothing if the muse doesn’t speak).
Voting ended on December 31st 2009 with Doctor Sleep winning the poll with 5,861 votes to The Wind Through the Keyholes 5,812. Fans were then greeted with the following synopsis:
“Stephen King returns to the character and territory of one of his most popular novels ever, The Shining, in this instantly riveting novel about the now middle-aged Dan Torrance and the very special twelve-year-old girl he must save from a tribe of murderous paranormals.
On highways across America, a tribe of people called the True Knot travel in search of sustenance. They look harmless—mostly old, lots of polyester, and married to their RVs. But as Dan Torrance knows, and spunky twelve-year-old Abra Stone learns, the True Knot are quasi-immortal, living off the steam that children with the shining produce when they are slowly tortured to death.
Haunted by the inhabitants of the Overlook Hotel, where he spent one horrific childhood year, Dan 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. This is an epic war between good and evil, a gory, glorious story that will thrill the millions of devoted readers of The Shining and satisfy anyone new to this icon in the King canon.”
In January 2018, it was announced that an adaptation of Doctor Sleep was fast-tracked into development at Warner Bros. Pictures with Mike Flanagan set to direct, who had previously directed another one of King’s adaptations, Gerald’s Game for Netflix. The film is scheduled to release on January 24th 2020.
On June 13th 2018, Ewan McGregor was confirmed as the role of an older Danny Torrance. He was joined on June 28th 2018 by Rebecca Ferguson who was cast as Rose the Hat, leader of the True Knot.
Now today we can add Alex Essoe as Wendy Torrance (the role originally played by Shelley Duvall in 1980’s The Shining) and Carl Lumbly as Dick Halloran (originally Scatman Crowthers in The Shining).
Those roles were oriinated by Shelley Duvall and Scatman Crothers in Stanley Kubrick’s iconic 1980 adaptation of The Shining. Other reports indicate Zahn McClarnon will soon be announced as Crow Daddy – an evil member of a psychic cult that the adult Danny Torrance battles. He is the right-hand-man and lover of Rose the Hat.