‘The Running Man’ returns to theaters: Here’s what you should know
Stephen King simply can’t be stopped; new films & series seem to feature adaptations of the national treasure’s stories at least once per month. King stays busy on Twitter (check it out) between writing novels, as his works continue to get scooped up, reimagined, and quickly ascend to become massive hits.
The It reboot saw massive success in 2017 & 2019, finally creating a Halloween costume fit to rival Heath Ledger’s Joker as most quickly overdone & driven into the ground. King’s The Stand reboot tied up the end of 2020 when it hit streaming last December, and it’s already time for more King buzz with the announcement of The Running Man remake.
Entertainment Weekly reported last week that Stephen King’s 1982 novel The Running Man is set to be adapted to film for the second time. According to his memoir On Writing: A Memoir of the Craft, King wrote the novel in a week and under the pen name Richard Bachman.
The Running Man is set to be imagined for the big and/or small screen, amidst theater closures resulting from the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, but the title won’t appear on screen for the first time.
The Running Man was adapted for the first time on film with the release of 1987’s The Running Man starring actor-turned-governator Arnold Schwarzenegger. Following in line with the current state of Hollywood and film production, we’ll have a remake in its third iteration with the upcoming The Running Man adaptation, and this time we’re sure to have a completely different vision: Edgar Wright is set to direct.
Cinephiles will remember Edgar Wright from his breakout cult classic 2004’s Shaun of the Dead and the rest of the Three Flavours Cornetto trilogy in Hot Fuzz & The World’s End that followed in 2007 & 2013 respectively.
If you didn’t follow up with the trilogy, we have little doubt millennials & zoomers alike are familiar with his adaptation of Scott Pilgrim vs. The World & the Oscar-nominated Baby Driver (and the plethora of reaction gifs they birthed.)
Wright is on board to direct the upcoming The Running Man, and by the looks of the plot, he’ll be shying away from the straightforward action on display in Baby Driver and harkening back to the sci-fi sensibility shown in The World’s End.
The Running Man follows contestants on a game show who are hunted by humans across the globe. King’s story is set in a dystopian future all the way in 2025, and we can only imagine the crew behind The Running Man hears the clock ticking to get this film out as quickly as possible.
Wright will be co-writing The Running Man as well as directing, calling on past collaborator Michael Bacall to write with him. The Running Man will be Bacall’s second collaboration with Wright, after first co-writing the screenplay to 2010’s Scott Pilgrim. Things are looking good for The Running Man remake, but will literary god Stephen King approve of the new adaptation?
All signs point to yes in King’s approval, as the writer hasn’t been shy about his opinions on Twitter. King has been vocal about the, er, turbulent political climate in the U.S. over the past five years, and follows suit with projects he fancies. He has recently shouted out M. Night Shyamalan’s Servant, but what does he think of Edgar Wright?
King has called Wright’s cult classic Shaun of the Dead, saying it’s a “ten on the fun meter.” With such high praise, we can only imagine King is as excited as the rest of film fans for the heavy hitting crew behind the upcoming The Running Man adaptation.
When we’ll see The Running Man released is hard to say, but the film won’t be the next thing we’ll see from Edgar Wright; his next feature film Last Night in Soho is a horror-thriller set to release this Halloween season in October 2021.