Anybody remember the 1993 ABC miniseries adaptation of Stephen King’s The Tommyknockers starring Jimmy Smits and Marg Helgenberger? Probably not, because it wasn’t very good. The source material tells the story of a female author who unearths a spaceship whose inhabitants are still psychically alive and exert their influence on said author’s town of Haven for nefarious purposes. Her alcoholic on again, off again boyfriend comes to visit soon after she makes the discovery, aids her in finishing The Dig and then combats her and the rest of the town as the collective psyche of those under the craft’s influence turns dark. It wasn’t one of King’s best novels but was full of interesting ideas, and was (as is typical of King’s works) a bestseller, hence the TV adaptation. While not fondly remembered, NBC is deciding to strike while the Under the Dome TV iron is hot and has commissioned Yves Simoneau (Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee) to direct a miniseries remake.
Perhaps a bit more shocking is the news that NBC is also planning to remake horror classic Rosemary’s Baby as a miniseries. No word on how closely it will follow the Polanski classic, or Ira Levin’s novel (the miniseries will be penned by Scott Abbot(Introducing Dorothy Dandridge, Winchell)) but it’s a bit harder to imagine Rosemary’s Baby making the same impact on TV screens as it did in the theaters in 1968 (and continues to do to this day) given its content. And to be honest, The Tommyknockers novel contains some fantastic imagery that will likely never see the light of day on television as well, but that one is a little easier to fathom on the small screen as it’s already been tried before. Still, NBC has shown their willingness to attack sharp and controversial adult subject matter as most recently seen in the recently concluded first season of Hannibal, a critical hit with a strong fan following that has been renewed for a second season.
As a Stephen King fan reading through various message boards, this Renegade Reporter identifies completely with the question of why The Tommyknockers, a somewhat weak novel, it getting the remake treatment when there are so many of the author’s properties that have yet to be adapted for the big or small screen. Miniseries do make sense because not everything is big enough to expand into a several season TV series run (although they seem to be doing just that with Under the Dome), but you could take something like The Talisman and make a mini or one season series out of it quite competently. And if it’s a hit? Adapt Black House and you’ve got yourself another season of solid ratings. Just a thought.
Source: Ain’t It Cool