Mike Flanagan found it ‘almost impossible’ to recreate hotel for Doctor Sleep

Mike Flanagan found it “almost impossible” to recreate The Shining’s iconic Overlook Hotel for the sequel Doctor Sleep.In the horror movie, Ewan McGregor stars as Dan Torrance, who has psychic abilities known as “the shining”, and he returns …

Mike Flanagan found it “almost impossible” to recreate The Shining’s iconic Overlook Hotel for the sequel Doctor Sleep.

In the horror movie, Ewan McGregor stars as Dan Torrance, who has psychic abilities known as “the shining”, and he returns to the Overlook Hotel, where he spent time as a child, to confront demons new and old.

Flanagan and his team painstakingly tried to recreate the Overlook director Stanley Kubrick designed for 1980’s The Shining with 100 per cent accuracy, but they soon realised they had quite the task ahead of them.

“If someone else had made the (Doctor Sleep), I, as a fan, would be scrutinising every frame, I would be holding them to the standard that would be pretty insane, the level of detail, making sure they got it right,” he said during a Q&A in London. “We didn’t get it all right, I can tell you that, we tried, it’s really hard to do, it turns out.”

The Hush filmmaker had access to all of Kubrick’s blueprints for his designs, but the late director didn’t always stick to them, and they discovered the colour of the typewriter, an important prop, changed over the course of The Shining. Accordingly, he did a poll to find out what colour it should be for Doctor Sleep.

“The typewriter changes colour during the course of The Shining, we had it for one scene, so the question we would ask ourselves was, ‘How do you remember it, what colour is the typewriter?’” he recalled. “And we would poll everyone… If we had to make a decision, we made it based on how we who loved the film remembered it the most, with the hope that even though it might not be completely accurate for the film in its entirety, it would be close enough and kind of the way you guys remembered the film. I guarantee you we didn’t get everything right, it’s almost impossible.”

However, they managed to achieve the Overlook recreations and only resorted to using Kubrick’s footage to show a car driving up a canyon road with the permission of his estate.

Doctor Sleep is in cinemas now.

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Doctor Sleep director plotting potential sequel

Director Mike Flanagan has started brainstorming ideas with author Stephen King for a potential sequel to Doctor Sleep.The new movie is a follow-up to Stanley Kubrick classic The Shining, with both films based on novels by horror master King, and Flana…

Director Mike Flanagan has started brainstorming ideas with author Stephen King for a potential sequel to Doctor Sleep.

The new movie is a follow-up to Stanley Kubrick classic The Shining, with both films based on novels by horror master King, and Flanagan reveals they have already begun throwing around possible plots to continue developing the story of troubled protagonist Danny Torrance.

“(We’re) talking actively about what’s next, and we have a great idea for that I’m not allowed to talk about yet, but it’s really cool, and yeah, I expect there will be another chance to play in that sandbox very soon,” the moviemaker teased in an interview with CinemaBlend.

Doctor Sleep is the director’s second adaptation of a King book, having previously brought psychological thriller Gerald’s Game to the screen for a Netflix movie in 2017. And having them both so well received by the writer has given Flanagan a real ego boost.

“It’s been my dream since I was a kid to be able to adapt Stephen King, and he’s let me play in that sandbox two times; I would be thrilled to do it again,” he gushed about his hopes of working together on a third film and beyond. “He’s been happy both times, which is still like (mind-blowing), as long as that keeps up, if he’ll have me back, I’m there for the long haul. I’ll do as many as he’ll let me.”

Receiving King’s blessing for Doctor Sleep was crucial for Flanagan to turn the 2013 book of the same name into a movie because the author had previously been vocal about his dislike of Kubrick’s take on The Shining – but the filmmaker needn’t have worried.

“I’ve enjoyed all his movies,” King said of Flanagan. “I read the (Doctor Sleep) script very, very carefully and I said to myself, ‘Everything that I ever disliked about the Kubrick version of The Shining is redeemed for me here.'”

Doctor Sleep stars Ewan McGregor as the grown-up Torrance, who was played by child actor Danny Lloyd in the cult 1980 movie, which also featured Jack Nicholson and Shelley Duvall as his parents.

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Mike Flanagan saw 900 girls while casting Abra in Doctor Sleep

Doctor Sleep director Mike Flanagan and his team saw more than 900 girls while trying to find the perfect Abra for the movie. In the new horror, which is a sequel to The Shining, Abra Stone is a young girl with formidable psychic abilities known as “th…

Doctor Sleep director Mike Flanagan and his team saw more than 900 girls while trying to find the perfect Abra for the movie.

In the new horror, which is a sequel to The Shining, Abra Stone is a young girl with formidable psychic abilities known as “the shining” and she has to hold her own in scenes with Ewan McGregor as Dan Torrance, a recovering addict with similar powers, and Rebecca Ferguson, who plays Rose the Hat, the leader of a cult who feeds on children with psychic abilities.

During a Q&A at a screening of the film in London, the director revealed the team saw 900 girls before finding 13-year-old Kyliegh Curran.

“We saw more than 900 girls trying to find the right one and you hear these stories about Hollywood casting that you hope are true and this is one of those stories,” he said. “Kyliegh, who is a complete unknown, who is a local hire – she lived 15 minutes from our production offices – had submitted a tape, didn’t have the big agency weight behind her – I don’t think she even had a current headshot – and her tape did what it was supposed to do.”

Curran’s tape kept rising through the levels of the casting process until she made the final few, which included experienced actresses, and got called in to read with McGregor.

“She came in and read with Ewan and as soon as she walked out the room, the door hadn’t quite closed yet, and he turned to us and said, ‘It’s obviously her, right?’ and it was, we all completely agreed,” the filmmaker recalled. “She’s an amazing young talent. You hope in your career that you get to see someone really truly come out of nowhere like that and I’m honoured that we were there to able to see that happen for her because she’s really something.”

Doctor Sleep, an adaptation of Stephen King’s 2013 novel of the same name, is in cinemas now.

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Mike Flanagan felt like ‘throwing up’ while screening Doctor Sleep for Stephen King

Director Mike Flanagan was so nervous screening Doctor Sleep to Stephen King for the first time that he felt like vomiting. The Hush filmmaker is a huge fan of the famed horror author’s work and read his 2013 book Doctor Sleep, a sequel to 1977 novel T…

Director Mike Flanagan was so nervous screening Doctor Sleep to Stephen King for the first time that he felt like vomiting.

The Hush filmmaker is a huge fan of the famed horror author’s work and read his 2013 book Doctor Sleep, a sequel to 1977 novel The Shining, the week it was released – so he was incredibly nervous when he brought the finished film to Maine to show it to King in an empty cinema.

“I sat right next to him actually. I’m a fanboy first and that was paralysing,” Flanagan said at a screening of the film in London. “I think I stared at my foot trying not to look directly at him during the screening, but I was mostly just acutely aware of every shift or sigh or anything he did, I was reading way too much into. I felt like throwing up for two and a half hours.”

King doesn’t hold back when it comes criticising the movie adaptations of his novels and was particularly scathing about Stanley Kubrick’s 1980 adaptation of The Shining. Accordingly, Flanagan was nervous when he suggested using the film as a basis for his sequel.

“His opinions are absolutely well known, he’s not shy about them at all, so it was nerve-wracking to go to him and say, ‘Look, I really think the only way to make this right is to make it within the cinematic universe that Kubrick established.’ His initial reaction was, ‘No,'” Flanagan revealed. “The argument was: What I’d like to do is treat Kubrick’s film as canon, we’d like to make this a direct follow-up to that film, but within that, I wanted to give him a chance to see some of the elements from the novel The Shining that Kubrick had jettisoned… (King) has been very specific about what upset him and that gave us a lot to work with… It was a nerve-wracking proposal and if he hadn’t given us his blessing for that we wouldn’t have made the film.”

Luckily, King offered his approval and “loves” the finished film, as do members of the Kubrick estate, with Flanagan adding, “It almost doesn’t matter at this point what happens now those two have spoken.”

Doctor Sleep, starring Ewan McGregor and Rebecca Ferguson, is in cinemas now.

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Westworld’s Zahn McClarnon lands major movie role

Zahn McClarnon has been added to the cast of The Shining sequel, Doctor Sleep.It was announced in June that Ewan McGregor would be playing the grown-up version of Danny Torrance, played by Danny Lloyd in Stanley Kubrick’s 1980 cult horror classic, al…

Zahn McClarnon has been added to the cast of The Shining sequel, Doctor Sleep.

It was announced in June that Ewan McGregor would be playing the grown-up version of Danny Torrance, played by Danny Lloyd in Stanley Kubrick’s 1980 cult horror classic, along with Rebecca Ferguson as Rose the Hat, the leader of a group of quasi-immortals who prey on people who have psychic abilities known as the shining.

Now it’s been announced that Westworld favourite Zahn will also appear in the retelling of Stephen King’s follow-up novel, as Crow Daddy, Rose’s right-hand man.

Written in 2013, 36 years after Stephen penned The Shining, Doctor Sleep follows an adult Danny, who is haunted by the issues of rage and alcoholism which plagued his father Jack Torrance, famously played by Jack Nicholson, as well the events of what happened at the Overlook Hotel in his childhood.

Carl Lumbly has been cast as Dick Halloran, an integral character of the original story, while Alex Essoe is starring as Danny’s mother Wendy Torrance. The roles were previously helmed by the late Scatman Crothers and retired actress Shelley Duvall.

Mike Flanagan, known for his work in the horror genre, is directing, and also adapted the screenplay from Stephen’s award-winning book. The story is set in Massachusetts this time around, the state Mike was born in.

Since wowing as Akecheta in season two of Westworld, Variety reports 51-year-old Zahn has been on the radar of several movie executives.

His previous credits include TV shows The Son and Longmire, as well as season two of Fargo, which his co-star Ewan joined for the third series.

Doctor Sleep is due to hit cinemas in January 2020.

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