It’s confirmed: we’re getting another Stephen King adaptation directed by none other than Mike Flanagan. After seeing success with Doctor Sleep (2019) and Gerald’s Game, there’s no doubt he’s the man to turn another King novel into an immersively chilling masterpiece.
Stephen King has had dozens of successful film adaptations, with the most popular including Carrie (1976), The Shining (1980), Misery (1990), The Green Mile (1999), and The Shawshank Redemption (1994). With over 40 years in his writing career, he has seemingly endless ideas for gripping horrors with incredibly distinctive storylines, characters, and symbolism. The Life of Chuck is no different, with a unique plot that instantly makes you want to dive in and get the whole story.
Mike Flanagan continues to earn a prominent name in the horror genre with success from shows like The Haunting of Hill House, Midnight Mass, The Fall of The House of Usher, and movies including Hush and Oculus. It should come as no surprise that he’s also one of few who have turned more than one Stephen King story into a hit film. Like the esteemed author, Flanagan uses a similar formula in his productions. He draws inspiration from his love of horror as a child paired with real-life experiences, giving his characters depth, relatability, and engaging storylines.
Needless to say, this duo is a horror fan’s dream team. With every piece of information released about the upcoming film, it’s nearly impossible to keep the anticipation at bay.
What’s ‘The Life of Chuck’ About?
Based on King’s novella of the same name from his 2020 If It Bleeds collection, the story follows Charles “Chuck” Krantz, who is dying from a brain tumor. However, there’s a twist; it’s told in reverse. The movie will begin with the 39-year-old man who has been losing his grip on reality as the tumor slowly takes over his brain. Although he’s seemingly ordinary, there may be more than meets the eye. We’ll only receive the final puzzle piece of his tale as the plot unfolds backward to his childhood, where he grew up as an orphan in a presumably haunted house.
Stephen King is well-known for his ability to take his readers on an in-depth ride through unimaginable terrors in his detailed plots. Paired with Mike Flanagan’s touch to bring the stories and characters to reality, adding a few twists of his own, the film is expected to be a massive hit.
What We Know Mike Flanagan’s ‘The Life of Chuck’ Adaptation So Far
The now much-anticipated project was announced in May 2023, with filming starting in October under a SAG-AFTRA interim agreement (as The Life of Chuck is a “completely independent” movie), and filming was wrapped up on November 16th, 2023. Filming occurred in various locations across Alabama, primarily in Mobile and Baldwin counties. Flanagan took to X/Twitter on November 17th, stating, “‘That’s a wrap on THE LIFE OF CHUCK. This has been a tenacious little miracle of a movie from the start & I’m forever indebted to this wonderful cast and crew. This film is deeply special to me, and I’m elated that it’s going to exist in the world.”
Chuck will be played by Tom Hiddleston, best known for his portrayal of Loki in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Mark Hamill, famous for his role as Luke Skywalker in the Star Wars franchise, will play Albie. We have a lot to learn about Hamill’s character still, though it’s expected to be a prominent role. Flanagan also revealed 21 names in total of the star-studded cast, like Karen Gillan, who was in Guardians of the Galaxy, and horror native Mathew Lillard of Scream, Thirteen Ghosts, and Five Nights at Freddy’s. Other notable mentions in the film include Chiwetel Ejiofor, Jacob Tremblay, Harvey Guillén, and Kate Siegel.
While Flanagan hasn’t released many details about the characters, they’ll likely be portraying slightly modified versions of characters in the original Stephen King novella. He also added in a great deal of extras required to film large crowd scenes.
When Will ‘The Life of Chuck’ Be Released?
Although they’ve finished filming, the pre-production stage is still underway, and a set release date hasn’t been announced. With the long SAG-AFTRA Strike finally ending in November, production will hopefully be in progress soon. While it’s possible we may enjoy The Life of Chuck in late 2024, we may not see it hit screens until early 2025.
It’s also unclear if the film will premiere in movie theaters or be available on streaming services. With Flanagan, either is possible, with one of his Stephen King adaptations, Doctor Sleep, debuting in theatres and Gerald’s Game released exclusively on Netflix. With Flanagan leaving Netflix behind after his most recent series, The Fall of the House of Usher, it’s unlikely he’ll sign a deal like he did with Gerald’s Game back in 2017.